Xi Zhang and Kathryn Wingard
Xi Zhang Statement:
My art is a reaction to social media platforms, pop culture, and globalization. Today, massive commutation and interaction occurs between individuals, communities, and countries through digital media and wide-spread use of continuously changing social platforms. The ease of "virtual" travel blurs traditional references relating to identity and culture, creating a dual existence between the physical and virtual realms. This hybrid phenomenon emerges from every culture, leading to uncertainty. In my painting practice I combine technology-based pop-icons - from sources such as Facebook, video games, cartoons and advertisements - with historical icons such as classic Asian and European paintings, traditional photography and ancient calligraphy, as a way of processing our hybrid culture under the impact of technology and globalization.
The twelve different bodies work I have developed to date each have their own unique aesthetics, though some series maintain multiple aesthetics. In each I strive to depict a landscape of uncertain living environment: west versus east, old versus new, local versus globe, physical versus virtual, low art versus high art. Beyond my often psychedelic coding is a path that challenges the viewer to consider each element separately, deconstructing them until they no longer carry their original tags.
Xi Zhang Bio:
Born in 1984 in Kaifeng, China, Xi Zhang has been immersed in the practice of art throughout his entire life. Upon completion of his studies in painting at China's Beijing Institute of Art and Design, he moved to the United States to further his artistic training at Denver, Colorado's Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design. He received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting from RMCAD in 2008, and that same year was recognized by then Denver Post art critic Kyle MacMillan as the "Emerging Artist of the Year" for his "well developed, surprisingly mature vision." Zhang continued from there with his masters studies in painting at the University of Colorado, Boulder, receiving his MFA from the institution in 2011. That same year he was named one of the "12 Best Colorado Artists Under 35" as well as one of seven "Pathfinders" in the arts also by MacMillan in the Denver Post.
Zhang has presented his work in a number of notable solo exhibitions including "12921" at Rule Gallery, Denver, "Shows Promise" at the Jeppessen Terminal of Denver International Airport, and "11 Ceremonies" at Plus Gallery, Denver. In 2011 he was commissioned by CNN for their "Ripple" online international art project in commemoration of the ten year anniversary of 9/11, with his painting receiving more than four million hits from the news channels website. Later that year Zhang delivered a Logan Lecture at the Denver Art Museum as part of the prestigious series' fall focus on International Contemporary Chinese Artists. In 2012 Zhang received his United States citizenship as an "Artist of extraordinary ability," paving his way forward towards a career as a US-based artist. His work has been acquired by some of the most prominent contemporary collectors and curators in the state of Colorado.
Xi has been in the Artnaut since 2012.
Kathryn Wingard Statement:
My forms are inspired by my memories as well as my daily experiences and my emotional reactions to them. For me, creating is a form of play in which I formally investigate thoughts and feelings, memories, desires, and expectations. Whether I’m working in a controlled or a spontaneous method, process is very important. By rearranging different components of each piece and by using traditional as well as unconventional ways of working with a material, I attempt to discover new relationships among the things around us.
Kathryn Wingard Bio:
Kathryn Wingard is an artist residing Salt Lake City, Utah. She recently received a Master of Science in art therapy with a concentration in counseling from Mount Mary University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Though she now works in several different media, Kathryn has a fine arts background in sculptural ceramics. In 2008 she graduated from Massachusetts College of Art and Design with a BFA in fine arts 3-D, with a concentration in ceramics. After graduating, she left Boston and went on to continue studying fine arts with the graduate department of ceramics at the University of Colorado at Boulder. While in Colorado, Kathryn was a resident artist at the Paukune Wanner Art Hause in Severance, Colorado, and the Showpen Residency in Denver, Colorado. Kathryn has shown throughout the United States as well as internationally.
I have always equated the arts as a form of social activism; whether the expression is visual, musical, or interpretive, art has always been used to document who we are as a species, and attempted to use it to understand what it means to be human. The use of art as a form of social justice goes back to antiquity, and the way that life is portrayed has evolved through the years, from cave etchings to digital media. I feel that photography has allowed us to document the rapid changes of today’s world, and have used it as a means of artistic expression in myself. In my lifetime I have seen this medium go from simple black and white photos tothe use of digital media. While this has allowed more people to able to record important history, it has also allowed the soul and artistic expression to be taken out of the media (selfies, anyone?). Two years ago I decided to try teaching myself the art of colorization in photography. I started with old photos from the family, and have begun using my own newer photographs for my work. It has been a challenging process, and I am hoping that who I am will show through in my work. I will continue to show work highlighting societal and life changes, and am excited to have the opportunity to work with Artnuats.
I was born in 1957 to an Air Force chaplain and an artist mother. I grew up mostly overseas, where my parents exposed myself and my brothers to as much art as they could; one of my most vivid childhood memories is going to St. Peter’s and seeing the “Pieta”. My parents encouraged artistic expression in all forms with my brothers and I; 2 of my brothers went on to become working artists, one in Washington, D.C. I pursued the musical arts rather than the visual throughout my life, but I married an artist and brought up my children to appreciate and practice the visual arts. I have also been a social activist for my entire life, and my name is on the Civil Rights memorial in Montgomery Alabama for my work in the areas of social and human rights. My teen years were spent in the South, in the late 60’s and early 70’s, where I experienced firsthand the effects of social injustice, and I have worked on civil rights campaigns in many forms, most recently in the area of rights for people with different sexual orientations. I have been an avid photographer for many years as well, and manipulated my photography in the darkroom and through the camera settings. I have been searching for a way to express myself through my photos since the adventof digital technology; 2 years ago I decided to try painting on matte sepia photographs (which my mother did). I am hoping to express my emotions through the use of color and space through this process, and to bring a little of the “old school style” back to my photos. I am excited for the opportunity to show my work with the Artnauts in 2015.
Ardy Zirakzadeh was born in Tehran, Iran, in 1955 to Aboulghassem Zirakzadeh and Refugio Flores Zirakzadeh. The family moved to Boulder, Colorado, in 1956, where Aboul taught mathematics at the University of Colorado and Refy taught Spanish in the Boulder Valley School District. Ardy graduated from Boulder High in 1974, and attended Colorado State University, where he received a BFA in Printmaking in 1981. Ardy has been married since 1979, and has two children.
Ardy worked at Sears as a display manager from 1977-1984, when he left to found Master Screen Art, where he utilized silkscreening original images for clients. Ardy closed the shop in 1990, when he began a career teaching visual arts in the Boulder Valley School District. He remained with the district until his retirement in 2012. In 2013, after a long hiatus, Ardy opened fat Bird Studios, where he has began making his own art work again.
Ardy has been in the Artnauts since 2014.
Having immigrated to America from the former Soviet Union at an early age my work examines ideas of home, culture and the notions that distinguish personal histories from grand narratives. Relying on a wide array of approaches and aesthetic strategies my work swings freely from drawings of invented maps, large mixed media works based on historical photographs from Soviet Russia, to lyrical paintings that incorporate the traditional symbols of my youth with a personally invented vocabulary of images. By layering and overlapping such a broad range of references my work examines what it means to be both Russian and American while putting in to question our normative ideas of national identity.
Alex Yudzon was born in Moscow in 1977 and immigrated to the United States at the age of 8. After graduating from Chelsea College of Art and Design in London, Yudzon moved to New York to work as a visual artist. Since then, Yudzon has developed a complex and broad ranging body of work that speaks to his early experiences of displacement while raising questions about our notions of home, identity and change. Over the past decade Yudzon has exhibited works extensively both nationally and internationally. Alex Yudzon lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.
Alex Yudzon joined the Artnauts in 2014.
My painting occurs in relation to presence – the presence in a room, in between things, in open space, in light. It is this quality of presence, always available within the phenomenal world, which my work investigates. I am interested in how this sense of presence shifts and adjusts as our experience of the world changes, in a daily way, from hour to hour and moment to moment; an ontological inquiry through a dialectic of the objective and the subjective. How does the attempt at the representation of presence and the accompanying form change as our apprehension of presence changes? How does a painting language change to accommodate those aspects of our changing subjectivity? Additionally, there is the parallel and interconnected problem of the work achieving and embodying its own presence, not merely as a reflection, but as an extension, adding to the fabric of the world. To the extent that this is achieved, the work may perform reflexively, focusing our attention back to the phenomenal world, in a state of inquiry and attention. While painting I am in a three-way dialogue, between the piece of the world that I am observing, my inner subjective response, and the accretion of marks and formal needs of the painting. I am exploring the world in front of me, a still life, flowers, an empty room with a few chairs, perhaps a person sitting. As I continue this investigation I find that there are different modes of transaction and translation, different modes of painting language that conjure up differing experiences of presence. When these different modalities are juxtaposed, as for example, distinct canvases within a triptych, they create a synergy of presence that I find not available by any one of them alone. The resultant appearance of the work may be seen as a postmodern attempt at the investigation of the juxtaposition of different painting languages. But my interest lies more directly in the investigation and apprehension of a pre-conceptual sense of presence; and in that sense my theoretical interests lie more in phenomenology than post-structuralism. I believe it is through the identification of the self with a pre-conceptual and pre-linguistic sense of being that actual change occurs. While our identification remains within the confines of discursive thought and language our model of the world remains one of fragmentation and conflict. The development of a progressive criticality based on current theory and discourse is necessary in order to participate in our contemporary cultural dialogue, but actual change occurs through a shift in our identification of the self and the growing awareness of the essential and indivisible fabric of reality. It is to an investigation of this sheer presence, which is not only pre-conceptual but also resides before and between form, that my work is committed.
Jordan Wolfson, Bio Jordan Wolfson is a contemporary artist, born in 1960, and raised in Los Angeles. He received his MFA from Yale University School of Art in 1991. Wolfson has exhibited extensively both in the United States and abroad and has received numerous awards including the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant, the Ingram Merrill Foundation Grant and a Purchase Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters; he was a fellow at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, MA and the Ballinglen Art Foundation in Ireland. His work has been exhibited by Hirschl and Adler Gallery, J. Cacciola Gallery and the DFN Gallery in New York City. Wolfson is currently represented by Prographica Fine Works in Seattle, Rothschild Fine Arts in Tel Aviv and Artspace Gallery in Jerusalem. He lives in Louisville, Colorado. Jordan Wolfson has been in the Artnaut since 2015
My research is informed by issues surrounding the relationship between individuals and the construction of identity. I am interested in intersections: child and adult, women and men, the dualities of living, success and failure. Ultimately, I am interested in how we as human beings experience ourselves; how we define ourselves and are defined by our relationships with each other. Storytelling and narrative are central to my work. The power and importance of the oral, written and visual story lies at the heart of culture. I am drawn to the power of the narrative to seduce, influence and transform. My portraits speak to the physical and psychological spaces that we inhabit simultaneously. They are a documentation of a personal journey, but one that is universal to human experience.
Andrea Wallace is the Artistic Director of Photography and New Media at Anderson Ranch Arts Center. She received her MFA from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Before coming to the Ranch, she worked as Assistant Professor at Lake Forest College and Willamette University. Her film, Rochell and Brian, a documentary about teenage pregnancy, premiered at the New York International Independent Film Festival. She exhibits nationally and internationally with numerous shows throughout the Americas, Europe, China and the Middle East.
Luis Hector Valdovino and Dan Boord
Dan Boord and Luis Valdovino have been working in collaboration on video art works for twenty-five years. Their projects have been emotionally and intellectually involved, either directly or indirectly, with autobiographical experiences involving how individuals fit within a larger culture. Their collaborations are distinguished by their interest in the experience of everyday life. Seen from their perspective, everyday experience has a form and character, which often seems to fall outside the application of logic. Certain aspects of social and cultural meaning appear to defy reasoning or systematic attempts to unify that experience into something comprehensible. This situation is, as they see it, their backyard, the place where their poetic ideas and the ethos of their videos reside. They attempt to work out a way of expressing, in video, what it feels to be alive in this time and place.
Dan Boord is a professor in the Film Studies Program and Luis Valdovino is a Professor in the Art & Art History Department at the University of Colorado, Boulder. Selected exhibitions venues include: The Museum of Modern Art, New York, The Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, France, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid, Spain, Centro Nacional de Las Artes, Mexico City, Mexico; Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, Santiago, Chile, Toronto Film Festival, Toronto, Canada, The Institute of Contemporary Art, London, England, Robert Flaherty Film Seminar and Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, Holland.
Dan Boord and Luis Valdovino have been members of Artnauts since 1996.
I am an artist that uses digital mediums for creation, documentation and output of my artwork. Conceptually my work centers around explorations of gender and the unwritten rules of female socio-political identities. Most often I use my body in experiential performances or drawings – what does it feel like for me to act out dominant physical gestures that will provoke passive gestures in some else? I find that my methodology for inhabiting the corporal experience of my subjects allows for a closer look at the true nature of the subject matter – I am courting bathos as a tool to reveal the underpinnings of our cultural interactions.
I use drawing as observational tool. As a residual output of my research I use digital inputs to capture the incidentals and environment around my chosen subject matter. This can manifest itself in several ways, although my main practice is to take my digital drawings and use code to create instructions that final composition of the drawings follow.
In 2008 I graduated from San Francisco State University with an MFA in Conceptual/Information Arts. Since 2008 I have been an Assistant Professor of Electronic Art at Colorado State University.
Cyane has been an artnaut since 2010.
Virginia M. Schick
“The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.” W.B. Yeats Through unrestrained use of vivid color, I incorporate the essence of my unique experiences growing up in the Midwest wandering fields, woods, and lakes on foot, horseback and boat. I try to capture nature and existence in the magic of freedom as I run, hike, gallop, swim, sail and openly breathe with a passion for life. My mainly figurative watercolors and avian batiks embody the essence of the spirit within the beings. They combine pattern, pose, and rhythm with a voice, to release the instinctual and meditative movement of a world full of magic things.
Schick was born in the Midwest and moved to the foothills above Boulder, Colorado in 1985 after graduating from Northern Illinois University with a BS Ed. in Art Education. As an art teacher, Virginia excels in guiding young artists. She also rides horses through the forest behind her home. Her artwork captures her love oflife. She finds tremendous joy in experiencing both physical and emotional contact with life. She grew up, was educated, and went to work (like most of us.) However, life’s experiences and colors are brighter for Virginia. They’re intense. She more than sees things, she notices, focuses, and cares for details. Nothing in life is “ordinary” or dull for her. In 1998, Ms. Schick earned a Masters Degree in Creative Arts and Learning from Lesley University, Cambridge MA and continues to take post graduate classes in studio art and educational theory. She continues to create art and shows both in groups and solo venues. In 2014, Virginia was named “Colorado High School Art Teacher of the Year.” Currently, Virginia teaches drawing and painting at Boulder High School in Boulder, Colorado. Artnaut since January, 2015.
Julie Poitras Santos
I am a storyteller working in relationship to materials and spaces. In my practice I employ diverse materials to create installations and site-specific actions that share a relationship with language. As both artist and poet, my research interests include areas where art and language intersect. From the ekphrastic to the sonic, I have investigated how we come to language, how we self-determine through story, and how we craft history. I work in different media and models. On the one hand, the work responds to a peripatetic movement and desire, extending horizontal pathways though action in different communities and locations. On the other hand, I have long made installation works, sometimes inhabited or enacted by an actor, dreamlike narratives that exist temporarily in relationship to spaces. There is a productive tension between these two models: navigating home and away, stasis and movement, meditation and pilgrimage. While the site of my work is variable – a city street, a rural pathway, an old mill, a hotel built to look like a ship – I work in response to the history and structure of each space uniquely. Through research and dialogue, and by looking to divinatory methods, I regard the potential for ritual gesture to create a separate place between known territories, allowing space for new narratives to be created. In lacing together site, memory, and local mythologies the work explores our desire for both belonging and difference through the stories we interpret and the stories we tell.
Poitras Santos' solo and collaborative work has been exhibited domestically and internationally, including exhibitions at the Urban Institute of Contemporary Art in Grand Rapids, Michigan; the Centre for Contemporary Culture in Barcelona, Spain; Reykjanesbaer Art Museum in Iceland; and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Denver, Colorado. She has attended residencies and created performances and projects in the United States, Spain, France, Germany, the Netherlands and Iceland. In 2012, Poitras Santos curated and created work for a five-person exhibition at the Coleman Burke Gallery in the Fort Andross Mill in Brunswick, Maine, accompanied by a catalogue with curatorial essay and supported in part by a grant from the Maine Arts Commission. A new project investigating relationships between textile and text is featured in "On Our Radar" on the Creative Capital website. Recent written publications include poetry and reviews in The New Guard, The Café Review and Glint. Julie Poitras Santos holds two MFAs, one in Visual Arts from the University of Colorado at Boulder, 2000, and a second in Poetry from the Stonecoast Creative Writing program, 2013. She received a BS from Tufts University in 1990. Poitras Santos has taught sculpture at Bowdoin College, the Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design, the University of Colorado at Boulder, and currently in the MFA program at the Maine College of Art. She lived in Barcelona, Spain from 2004-2007 and worked as the Artistic Director of the Art Residency program Can Serrat, in Montserrat National Park.
Poitras Santos was previously a member of the Artnauts in 2003-2004.
Before children have the language and cognitive skills to name an object, they explore the world with all of their senses. For instance, a chair is not a “chair” but rather something to climb on, to crawl under, and, perhaps, even to lick. With the acquisition of language and the awareness of the purpose of something, the investigations dwindle and the senses simmer. My hope is that people approach my work and stay with it because they are not quite sure what is going on: What are the forms? What are they made out of? How are clinging to the wall, suspended in space, or creeping along the floor?
In essence, I make abstract sculptures and installations to give people a place to let language and purpose slip away and to allow the senses to delight and to muse and the mind to wander and to wonder.
Martha Russo earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in developmental biology and psychology from Princeton University, 1985. Formerly a world-class athlete, she suffered a career-ending injury in 1984 while vying for a spot on the United States Olympic Field Hockey Team. After recovering from surgery, attracted to the physical nature of sculpture, Russo studied studio arts in Florence, Italy, and continued studying ceramics at Princeton University. In 1995, she earned her Master of Fine Arts degree at the University of Colorado, Boulder. Martha exhibits her sculptures and installations nationally, most recently at The Santa Fe Art Institute, Denver Art Museum, and the Museum of Contemporary Art/ Denver. Also through the social and politically based art collective, Artnauts, Martha has shown her 2-dimensional works in over 160 exhibitions on 5 continents and counting. In addition to her studio practice, Martha has taught Fine Arts at Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design in Lakewood, Colorado for the past 19 years and currently is a visiting lecturer at University of Colorado, Boulder. Martha is represented by the Claudia Stone Gallery in New York City. She lives in the mountains northwest of Boulder, Colorado with her husband and two children.
Martha has been a member of the Artnauts since 1996.
Garrison Roots (Tribute)
Since the late 1970's, I have engaged in a variety of art and public art activities. Throughout this time I have held a particular interest in the integration of art, architecture and design as a viable way to connect humanity. I believe such endeavors help communities as well as individuals find solace, promise and excitement in the everyday activities that bring us together. At the same time individual and public artworks may provide a reflection or transcendence with respect to the current cultural frame-work. Given this, art can provide a generous catalyst for independent exchange. I believe it is my responsibility as an artist to provide vision and to take things noticeably further, always questioning the current cultural framework.
My interest and contributions in this arena may be more akin to that of an explorer than to that of an artist and I realize that the images of work I am offering within this web-site may not speak to this directly, but they do lend to a passable understanding of such possibilities. Regardless of what process is involved, my goal is to do everything possible to live up to this idea. I believe the art making process to be an opportunity for me as an artist to respectfully push beyond the reflection of a superficial common ground within a given context and to produce art that reflects an informed view, with regard to the multiple dynamics that make up our cultural frameworks, from individual, to family, friends, neighbors, city, and so on.
I believe the communities within in we work and live to be made up of many diverse individuals representing many different realities. They are places where varied individuals propagate discussion about their concerns for "our" larger community. My work is intended to activate a thought process that invites dialogue or conversation regarding subject matter that ranges in its investigation from history, beauty, reality, desire, and value to indifference, etc. I believe art can reach far beyond existing boundaries and act as a center-piece on the table of a larger "cultural family" where contemplation runs rampant through the structure of that cultural framework. I believe this can be done while at the same time reflecting on the composition of the very fabric that holds that community together.
In many ways I believe great art is like a “near accident”—that elicits a response similar to when one is driving and, just for a moment, attention fading, something crosses suddenly in front of the car and the driver slams on the brakes and is urgently “snapped back” to consciousness. There is a rush of adrenaline, the heart races, the imagination is piqued, and then soberness sets in completely and thankfully. Just for a moment after the incident, one feels fully alive again, shaking with life and thankful for “only” the reminder. We are built from such experiences and should with every opportunity allow them to resonate through our efforts. As one who produces as well as consumes art, and has served on a number of selection panels, design teams and other collaborative efforts over the last thirty years, I feel strongly this is what art can offer, a kind of “snapping back” without of course the actual "near miss".
Art allows us to know ourselves again. It prompts us to new discussions with our neighbors, creates new perspectives and helps us to make new friends. Most of all it has the potential for culture, through the artists eyes, to take a fresh look at itself. I attempt to do this by recognizing and confronting difficult issues that I feel are often overshadowed. I believe now more than ever it is a time to seek out original thinking and to explore the unknown. As an artist, I believe ours is not to make the statement directly, but to prompt the conversation regardless of how wonderful or complex the subject. After all, as a people we have and will continue to survive more difficult issues than that of a resilient “snapping back” might provide as a result of our art making endeavors.
Garrison Roots received his BFA with distinction in 1979 from the Massachusetts College of Art, and his MFA fromWashington University in 1981. Roots is noted for his large scale, site-specific sculptural installations and collaborative public works that are often allegorical and made to be walked through rather than around.
Roots has exhibited his work nationally and internationally since the 1980's, including projects in Chile, China, Mexico, Peru, Palestine, Russia and Spain and is the recipient of two National Endowment for the Arts individual artist fellowships. He is a founding member of ARTNAUTS, an organization dedicated to promoting a visual dialogue between economically diverse artists around the world and is the author of Designing the World's Greatest PUBLIC ART, Images Publishing Group, 2002.
Currently, Roots is Professor and Chair of the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Colorado, Boulder where he recently presided over the construction of the universities new 180,000 square foot facility, Visual Arts Complex.
In 2004 Roots was an Interdisciplinary Artist in Residence at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Arts Institute, sponsored by the Department of Art and the School of Landscape Architecture. Roots taught a seminar called “PUBLIC ART; from Statues to the Internet” and hosted a symposium entitled "The Madison Project: Challenging the Public Art Paradigm."
Roots was recently awarded the 2008 Distinguished Alumni Award from the Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts at Washington University and has just completed a large commission for the new Denver Justice Center. Additionally, he continues to explore ongoing ideas regarding patriotic nationalist icons, contradictions in popular world views and impending global calamities.
Garrison Roots was a founding member of Artnauts and passed away in 2011. The info on this page is directly from his personal website.
Rob Rix is an individual whose drifting and stumbling has often lead to accusations of artistic production, whether or not materials are associated. Due to the continued accusations, he has chosen to embrace the opportunities made present by that which is know as art, while maintaining a solid position of confusion.
Rob Rix graduated from the RMCAD in the Spring of 2010. After a year of unemployment he went on to the UNM and is expected to graduate in the Spring of 2014. He is soon to emerge.
Rob Rix has been in the Artnaut since 2014.
As one of a growing body of artists in the current field of environmental art, I have devoted myself to the investigation of contemporary notions of place. My personal artistic research not only addresses how we, as humans, culturally connect to the landscapes that surround us, it also focuses on the complexities of that connection in a world where the environment is loved and abused simultaneously.
Most recently I have been creating paintings based on the iconic visual language of the American Sublime landscape painters who traveled to the western United States and abroad. The imagery that I create addresses the role these artists played in the expansionism of Manifest Destiny by using their sublime visual structure to paint the artifacts of what their work helped bring about: the boom of industry, development and growth (and all its subsequent issues) that we continue to see today.
Erika Osborne received her BFA from the University of Utah in painting and drawing and her MFA from the University of New Mexico. Erika’s artwork deals with cultural connections to place and environment. She has exhibited extensively nationally and internationally, with over ten solo exhibitions and over 45 group exhibitions in recent years - including shows at the Carnegie Museum of Art, the Nevada Museum of Art and the Chautauqua Institute. Erika has also been the recipient of numerous grants and awards, locally, nationally and internationally. Her work has been highlighted in three books surveying the evolution of land and environmental art in the West. It has also been featured in regional publications along with international art magazines such as New American Paintings, Art Papers, Sculpture Magazine and Southwest Art Magazine.
As well as being a practicing artist, Erika Osborne has dedicated herself to university level art education. From 2008-2013 Erika worked as an Assistant Professor at West Virginia University, teaching painting and drawing along side two environmentally driven field courses titled, Art and Environment and Place: Appalachia. Erika is now teaching painting in the Art Department at Colorado State University. She is also developing place-based programming that will be offered in the fall of 2014.
Erika Osborne joined Artnauts in 2014.
Throughout history, artists have responded to social concerns around them with artwork that depicts culture, social injustice, human rights, environmental degradation and political power. Artists have created artwork as extensions of their caring hearts and concerned minds to explore the aesthetics of interconnectedness and social responsibility. I believe that there is a link between art and social justice. My goal as an artist is to create artworks that are personal and which also express a sense of social responsibility.
In my creative process I use distortion and exaggeration for emotional effect. I apply vivid and dynamic color, overlapping transparent color with opaque color. I combine flat space with cubical space. My work interweaves, juxtaposes and superimposes unlikely images from American and Mexican popular cultures that include icons, symbols, history and the contemporary world to foster opportunities for the bending of meaning.
Tony Ortega holds a MFA from the University of Colorado and is currently an associate professor for Regis University. He received the Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts in 1999 and the Mayor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts in 1998. Tony Ortega’s lifelong project is to contribute to a better understanding of cultural diversity by addressing the culture, history and experiences of Latinos through his art. His work can be found in Denver Art Museum, Los Angeles County Museum and the Colorado Springs Fine Art Center. He has exhibited extensively in United States, Latin America and other parts of the world.
Tony Ortega has been in the Artnauts since 1998.
My art talks about "Time", and timeless issues. Being part of the world , trascending boundaries, languages, cultures. Consciousness of earth and universe, using recycled materials; also using land, sand from the place were the art is done, ritual of gratefulness towards earth. My conceptual art , tries to connect the human being with his own sense of entireness, through a meditation, while looking at my art pieces.
Concepts of time: now, the present, were I am, were I was born, "Mi Tierra"; mixed with from were I come, my roots, past; and where I might go, acts of the present moment. I also question languages, metric system, concepts inside any western culture. Communication trascends different languages. The bilingual energy of both languages, English and Spanish. Words that travel to make us think. Sense of sharing the rounded world. Respect for the land. Inspiration of being part of this art group, as a lung of renewing air for the world.
I studied Art in a chilean university: Universidad Finisterrae, Santiago de Chile, South America.
During the 90th I had the opportunity of being a transfer student at CU Boulder Colorado University. Were I got a scholarship in the 2000.
In Chile I got all the tools for being a metal sculpture artist, and all the studies to be a painter with classic tecnics, of acrylic and oil paintings.
At CU boulder I had the opportunity of getting the tools for doing conceptual art, and modern art; I had my most important teachers that make the core of my art, like Tony Rosatto and Garrison Roots.
In 1998 I met George Rivera in Holland and I was invited to be part of the beginning of Artnauts. We had an exhibition in the most important place of my country, Museo de Bellas Artes in 1998. Then we had another exhibition in Valdivia, Museo de Arte Contemporaneo same year, MAC de Valdivia. Later we had some shows in Spain and Mexico. For me doing art is like breathing.
Norambuena has been part of Artnauts since 1998.
Susannne A Mitchell
My work draws from my life experiences traversing continents and cultures between Malawi and the United States. Through marriage and motherhood, I am united with an African family and a way of life vastly different from my own. I am interested in the phenomena of re-entry shock: the brief period of time after returning ‘home’ from a foreign place, when the mundane, unnoticed and familiar are fleetingly exposed to consciousness. My work contains figurative elements and range from large-scale mixed media drawing/installations to intimate, miniature paintings, which often integrate photography and printmaking. Through these media I examine and recombine elements that become a lexicon of signifiers that reference history, race, class, family systems, home, and globalization.
In a series of work collectively titled Crossing Into, I used a fabric called ‘chitenje’ cloth that was collected from a village in Malawi where my extended family lives. The women use these fabrics as clothing and for many other functions in domestic life. These cloths bear the traces of their extensive use and are therefore imbued with a life–force, which I sought to honor in the work. The history and spirit in the cloth is used as a counterpoint to images from the Victorian Era, which are printed and drawn on top or emerge from behind through rents in the fabric. The superimpositions create an ambiguous relationship between what the fabrics represent and the symbolism of the images imposed upon them, and relate to the complicated and painful history of colonialism in Malawi. In this work, these physical and metaphysical references to the past are used as a means to contemplate current issues and future developments in Africa.
In this and other series of works, I am interested in the materiality of the objects and photographs. I remove them from their original context and recombine them in my artworks, in order to reinvestigate their meaning and reveal something honest about our common human experiences.
Susanne Mitchell is a visual artist, whose works combine painting, drawing, photography and printmaking. Born in New York in 1973, Mitchell received an MFA in printmaking from the University of Colorado at Boulder (2007) and a BFA in painting and drawing from California College of the Arts (1996). She has served as a Visiting Assistant Professor of Art at Metropolitan State University of Denver and as a Lecturer of Art at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Her work has been exhibited both nationally and internationally, including at the Craft and Folk Art Museum (Los Angeles), the Academy of San Carlos (Mexico City) and the National University of Colombia (Medellín, Colombia).
Susanne Mitchell has been in the Artnaut since 2013.
Shadi Mirmohammadi was born in March 1980 in Isfahan, Iran. She received her Diploma in Human Sciences, Bachelor in Persian literature (University of Isfahan-2002) and Master of Painting (Isfahan University of Art-2010). She has also received Design Certificate from Pardis of Isfahan University of Art. She defended her master dissertation in 2010 entitled “Meaning of light and color In Panj Ganje Nezami”, a comparative work between Persian literature and painting. Since then, she has been working in various art institutes including cultural & artistic association at University of Isfahan. As a member of Visual Art Association, she gained miscellaneous experiences in professional make up as well as Theater & Concert Scenic Design for which she has also received honored awards. Shadi has been teaching in design and Persian literature in eight different art colleges and schools for years. She has become an honored member of Isfahan Committee of Painters where her work was selected as finalist in 2006. Her selected works were published in Isfahan University of Art Annual Book and were exhibited in Contemporary Art Museum of Isfahan. Shadi has held two Solo and five Group Exhibitions yet. She is the author of art critic and newspaper article. Furthermore, Shadi has served as editor and translator for one book.
Shadi Mirmohammadi has been in the artnaut since 2015.
I consider myself a conceptual artist. I begin with an idea or concept that intrigues me and then start exploring different mediums to visually express the idea. I am interested in exploring the ambiguity of simultaneous construction, deconstruction and reconstruction, and the points where they occur simultaneously, as it occurs in nature, cultures and institutions. Like a tree growing up in a crack in a rock and at the same time the tree is being constructed the rock is being deconstructed. An organism is conceived, and continues to grow, while at the same time it begins to die. Societies develop, break down and are rebuilt. My work visually expresses these processes, most often exploring environmental issues and cycles. Bees, butterflies, ice and barbed wire are recurring themes in my work. With my environmental installations, rather than lecture the viewer I try to create an experience that will move the viewer to care about the issue on an emotional rather than academic level.
Jane McMahan is a conceptual artist living in Boulder, Colorado. She uses photography, video, painting and installation in her projects. Born in Wausau, Wisconsin McMahan received her BFA from the University of Colorado. She then did graduate work in Architecture before turning to teaching. Ms. McMahan taught art in the public schools for 12 years before returning full time to her own work in 1998.
McMahan’s artwork is often influenced by her place in the natural world. Her current work explores ways to visually capture the process of construction, deconstruction and reconstruction, and the moments when they occur simultaneously. She is interested in the extremes within this process. Current themes in her work include nature and environmental red flags, cultural and political interactions and social issues.
McMahan has been part of Artnauts since 2009.
Valerie Kim Martinez
I define situations in space; they are not literal, topographical, localizable places, but rather intellectual concepts, images that reflect structural and textual metaphors. For me the definition of a space is predicated on human presence and initiative.
V. Kim Martinez is an Associate Professor of painting and drawing in the Department of Art and Art History, University of Utah, since fall 2001. She received her terminal degree from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her fellowships include: The Sara Lee Foundation, Ragsdale, Vermont Studio Center, Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, Social and Public Arts Resource Center, The School of the Arts Institute of Chicago George L. & Ann Roman Siegel Foundation, International Iron Casters, the University of Utah John R. Parks and Tanner Humanities Center Professors Off-Campus. Kim has an active visual artist record, exhibiting locally in Salt Lake City, Ogden, Park City, Ephraim, and Springville. Nationally in New York, Illinois, California, New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado, Nebraska and Vermont. Internationally in Mexico, China, Palestine, Columbia, Guatemala, and Brazil. She is the recipient of the 2003 Salt Lake City Mayors Visual Artist Award, recognizing her community involvement and contribution to the Utah Department of Corrections, Veterans Administration, Utah Hispanic Women’s Association, First Step House and Art Access/Art Positive! In 2006 she received the University of Utah, College of Fine Arts, Faculty Excellence Award in Teaching, Research, and Service. Her community grants include: The National Endowment for the Arts “Challenge America”, through the Utah Arts Council, Utah Transit Authority, City of South Salt Lake, Salt Lake County, Primary Children’s Medical Center, State of Utah Division of the Blind and Visually Impaired and the University of Utah Housing & Residential Education.
Formally, my material application is controlled, this technique indicates a somber attempt at objectivity, to avoid sentimentality. The political content of my work is about the use and abuse of power. I analyze political, social and psychological, norms which demand adaptation, integration, and assimilation of everyone outside its borders.
Kim has been an active member of Artnauts since 2003
The value of photographs was apparent to me at a young age. The recollection of my family arranging and re-arranging themselves in front of the camera to memorialize happy events had a profound effect on the way I perceive the world. Since 1965, with varying levels of consciousness, I have been using photography to construct realities that challenge perceptions about what and where I am.
Roddy MacInnes is an Associate Professor of Photography in the School of Art and Art History at the University of Denver. Since leaving Scotland at age 15, he has worked as a merchant seaman, a fur trader, a bush pilot and a minerals prospector. He received a Master of Fine Arts degree in photography from the University of Colorado at Boulder, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in photography from Napier University in Edinburgh, Scotland. Roddy has been documenting life through photography for over forty years. His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally. His latest photography project was inspired by two albums of photographs he discovered in an antiques mall in Denver, Colorado. A North Dakota woman made the photographs in 1917. Through this project Roddy is exploring issues surrounding the relationships between photography and the construction of identity.
Roddy MacInnes has been in Artnauts since 2007.
“Betwixt and Between”
I am of the belief that the human mind is hardwired to create order out of disorder. I begin each work with a rhythmic web of marks, lines, and colors that stretch across the painting surface. It is important to integrate the unexpected into my work: with every misstep that occurs, there is an opportunity to take the image in new directions.
As I am interested in creating a varied and complex surface, I work back and forth between the addition and subtraction of materials. I liken my subtractive process to the excavation of earth that an archaeologist undergoes while searching for remnants of the past. Alas, I am a Modernist at heart.
Conceptually, this body of work circles around the condition of LIMINALITY. (from the Latin word “limen”, meaning "a threshold") Liminality may refer to the disorientation that occurs during times of division and transition (divorce, dislocation, conversion, etc.) As a 2nd generation American, the malleability of cultural identity is on one foot freeing, and on the other foot destabilizing. Despite this rending, liminal borders and boundaries metaphorically zip together what had once been divided, and create rich opportunities for growth. Stitches atone for what once was torn. It is on the horizon where sky and land are reconciled.
Archaeologist Marie Louise Stig Sorensen relates, “..material culture is at the same time active and pliable, meaningful but not absolute.” The imagery that emerges from my artistic process owes its inspiration and existence to the initial marks, lines, and colors, and to all of the subsequent layers in between.
Kari Lennartson, MFA… grew up with one foot in Minnesota, the other in Canada, jumping on hay bales and picking wild berries. Borders and boundaries, as well as the notion of “home” have been salient motifs during her artistic career. She earned her MFA in Painting at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado. She completed a BA in Studio Arts and Scandinavian Studies from Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, Minnesota, during which time she spent a semester studying Nordic Art History at Uppsala University in Uppsala, Sweden. A second generation Scandinavian- American, Lennartson speaks both Swedish and Norwegian with near-fluency.
In her artwork, Lennartson uses acrylic paints with mixed media such as charcoal, pastel, colored pencil, cattle markers, graphite, and collage elements. She prefers the tenderness of paper, closely followed by the rigidity of panel painting, and blushingly admits her adoration for modernist/ formalist aesthetics. Surface texture and line play a significant role in guiding the artist’s process of intuiting the whimsical interplay of shape and pattern. Conceptually, her extensive international travel continues to satiate Lennartson’s lust for liminality in both space and time.
She has been an Artnaut since 2016.
There are three ways that I have found to approach the creation and execution of a work of art: (1) through a process using materials to arrive at the content or usually arriving through a series of drawings, paintings or sculptures or (2) Through a problem or question that needs to be heard and expressed through a protracted and yet mindful choice of the style, materials and techniques necessary to its visual form, or (3) Through the unconscious workings of my conceptual and intuitive process where an image presents itself in a Zen-like moment of realization.
No matter, what the approach, there are a few things I find to have an enduring presence in my life and work: the sensuality and sheer beauty of materials and the wonderful contrasts and emotions that they can evoke. I delve into experimentation and the discoveries that are found through mindful play. I understand and question the world’s and universe’s order and chaos through the process of making art, and lastly, but with more measure as I mature, my care for humanity and how it is expressed and active in my work.
Catherine Leisek is “ manipulator, an artist who combines acrylics oils, watercolors, pastels, and collage to create works that qualify as both paintings and drawings…. for Leisek provocative and ambiguous images form the crux of her art. Sometimes collage elements of metallic paper and heavy dollops of paint provide unexpected textures. Forms are seldom isolated in these compositions, yet no element can be removed without jeopardizing the unity of each scheme” Roger Hurlburt , Sun Sentinel, Ft. Lauderdale FL
Leisek’s multi- dimensional work shows versatility in both two-dimensional and three-dimensional mediums and over her career she has exhibited a brought range of styles and techniques honed and influenced as a professor of art. Choosing from a broad array of materials her work reflects her interest in social and political commentary as a means of change. The styles and materials vary from witty narratives to conceptual objectivity always infused with a unique worldview.
As a Professor and in the Visual and Performing Art Department at Broward College in Ft. Lauderdale she teaches Art History, Sculpture and Three Dimensional Design. Leisek an accomplished widely exhibited international artist and lecturer who have resided in South Florida for over 30 years. Professor Leisek was granted a Master of Fine Arts and a Master of Arts from Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green Ohio: a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Windsor, Windsor Ontario: and a Diploma in Studio Arts from Fanshawe College, London, Ontario, Canada.
Catherine Leisek has exhibited with Artnauts since 2013.
I am inevitably lured to exploring life's narratives. I examine the power of the story and how it affects the culture and social mores it defines. My visual language derives from symbolic imagery abstracted from legendary tales then combined into a visual blend between story and my journey of truth. Re-contextualizing imagery recalls metaphors for the human condition. I am in constant search for that metaphor that identifies this condition. My concept dictates the direction of my process and the media, which is incorporated throughout execution. The still life is an important element in my work and as a collection; it serves as a manipulator of time, caught in liminal space. The collection itself contains stages between life and death, where anxiety meets desire and seduction is affirmed. I am fascinated with the toy as replica for life, examining belongings, situations and places; they evoke aspects of the real while remaining worlds apart. The miniature functions as a tool examining past, present and future from a voyeur's perspective, not unlike the “Wizard of OZ”, who controlled or seemingly so, the outcome of act I, II and III.
Lane serves as Associate Professor and Drawing Coordinator at Metropolitan State University of Denver. She received her BFA in 1995 from the University of Colorado at Boulder and continued her education, graduating in 1998 with her MFA, also from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Lane has been teaching studio art courses in higher education since 1999. She was a member of Edge Gallery, an artist run co-operative from 1996 - 2012. Lane is an interdisciplinary artist, exploring both traditional and experimental media as well as two and three-dimensional works and installation. Currently, she is a member of Ice Cube gallery, also a co-operative art gallery in the art district referred to as RINO within the Denver communitywhere she serves as New Membership Coordinator for the gallery. She has exhibited nationally as well as internationally.
Sandy Lane, member of Artnauts since 2014
Change—affecting it personally, and socially—is very important to me. Often, I look to ancient sources as my guide for this, in part because they hearken from a time more comfortable with notions of Transformation. I've used wood gleaned from olive groves in Bethlehem to create staffs; I've compounded anointing oil based on the exact components (cassia, myrrh, cinnamon) as laid down in the book of Exodus, and offered it up in hand-blown glass dispensers to exhibition visitors—allowing them to anoint themselves as they see fit. I've made reliquaries of bronze (a material thought to have powerful "memorializing" qualities), and copper (for its "conduit"-like properties between the spirit and material worlds). Modern inventions like the sewing machine, and familiar office-tools like rolling casters, make their way into my sculptures as well. But at their root, these are forms that embody the sort of ineffable sense of 'shift' and internal re-orientation that I seek.
The tactile is a Formal response to the notion of the personal; materials are latent with message. Hence, I've spent a lot of time researching just what it is they might be trying to tell us; I've learned about early Jewish practices previously kept secret, of mysticism and magic—to the point where my studio practice can almost seem to border on the anthropological. That's an admixture with which I feel comfortable. In many ways I'm a visual archeologist, unearthing fragments of the past, digging up metaphor and parable that I then site into a personal narrative. The only way I can advocate change for Others is to begin with my own practice, put my own self and beliefs on the line. Viewers often respond with intense catharsis to these works, and I welcome that. Through the gentle power of shared emotion, darkness is exposed, and healing is brought to light.
Beth Krensky is an associate professor of art education and the Area Head of Art Teaching at the University of Utah. She is an artist, activist and educator. She received her formal art training from the Boston Museum School and MIT’s Center for Advanced Visual Studies. She has exhibited widely throughout the United States and internationally. Her work is intended to provoke reflection about what is happening in our world as well as to create a vision of what is possible.
She is also a scholar in the area of youth-created art and social change. She received a master’s degree with a focus on critical pedagogy and art education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and a Ph.D. in Education from the University of Colorado at Boulder. She spent a decade with the award-winning youth arts organization, Project YES (Youth Envisioning Social change), as the Co-Founder and Artistic Director. She has coordinated numerous community-based art initiatives, including creating a Peace Park with young people in Colorado and the book A Piece of Peace with youth from Massachusetts. Her co-authored book, Engaging Classrooms and Communities through Art: A Guide to Designing and Implementing Community-Based Art Education, was published in 2009 by AltaMira Press/Rowman & Littlefield.
Beth is a founding member of the Artnauts and joined the collective in 1996.
Claire’s sculptures, installations, paintings, and drawings stage disasters both real and imagined. The works uncover her pre-occupation with catastrophic forces of nature and the psychological conditions of crisis. Her paper models and installations evoke the familiar – airplanes, trains, suburban neighborhoods and city blocks – seen through a lens of fragility. The airplane is almost entirely burned to cinders; the city is suspended upside-down, anchored in its own rubble. Each event represented reveals that, to some degree, nature has complete control over us.
Claire Jackel received her M.F.A. from the San Francisco Art Institute and her B.F.A. from the University of Colorado. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally at Oakland Museum of California, Schneider Museum of Art, Ashland Or., Rena Bransten Gallery, San Francisco, Calif., Marine Contemporary Salon, Venice, Calif., Museo de Arte Contemporáneo-UACh Valdivia, Chile, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Bogota, Colombia, and Dar al-Kalima College, Bethlehem, Palestine. She received a fellowship to be an artist in residence at the Vermont Studio Center in 2010. In 2008, she was a recipient of the Murphy and Cadogan Fellowship in the Fine Arts. She lives and works in Los Angeles.
Claire Jackel has been an Artnaut since 2012.
My recent work has been dealing primarily with two main topics. The issue of violence, war, power, history and control and then the ideas of disaster, emergency and the vulnerability of us all to natural forces. I create finely crafted sculptures using the materials of clay wood and metal to express these ideas. Enlarged medieval helmets, high tech drones, and sinking battleships contrast with the life saving properties of fire hoses, standpipes and other emergency fire equipment.
Ben Jackel was born in Aurora, Colorado in 1977. He attended the University of Colorado at Boulder and studied fine art with a focus in ceramics and photography, receiving his BFA in 2000. In 2002 Jackel moved to Los Angeles to attend graduate school at The University of California, Los Angeles. While at UCLA he worked with Adriane Saxe and Charles Ray, receiving his MFA in 2005. In 2007 he participated in the show “Rogue Wave 07”at the gallery LA Louver. LA Louver formally represented the artist following the show. His first solo show at LA Louver “Compliance Solutions” 2009 was followed up by his second solo show “Zero Percent Contained” 2012” Both of these shows deal with themes of war, disaster, power and death. Jackel continues to live and work in Los Angeles. He first showed with the Artnauts in the year 2000 with a trip to Lima, Peru.
Ben Jackel has been in the Artnaut since 2014
Susan D Hopp
My work is rooted in media image proliferation and collage. However, my collages work outside of the picture plane. I adjust the scale of the image and let pieces of the images hang off the wall, referencing the uncontrollable and often unruly nature of media images. Choosing photographs that display a specific organizational structure, such as packaging, emphasizes my need to physically control an uncontrollable amount of media information. The interdisciplinary nature of my work grows out of disorientation and deception: disorientation around what the original image is and deception by turning the image into an abstracted deconstructed version of itself.
My studio process involves collecting images, re-photographing or documenting media images with my portable phone camera, digitally resizing them, and then professionally printing them for the sole purpose of physically cutting them apart to collapse their original intended meaning. The process of taking an image that conveys organization, and then deliberately disorganizing it, addresses the deception around image proliferation in media: you never know what you are really looking at or where it originally came from. I use the photograph as a tool; that is to say, I play with the space between an images manipulation and its believability.
b. 1970 Erie PA
Currently lives and works in Denver CO
Susan Hopp recently earned her MFA in Visual Arts from Lesley University College of Art and Design. Previously she obtained a BFA in Painting from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania and an MA in Sculpture from West Virginia University. Hopp exhibits nationally and was awarded a scholarship to attend a residency at the Vermont Studio Center in Johnson Vermont.
Her work is interdisciplinary and uses appropriated images, drawing, and collage to investigate the relationship between digital media and the hand-made. The nature of her work grows out of disorientation and deception: disorientation around what the original image is and deception by turning the image into an abstracted deconstructed version of itself.
Hopp currently teaches advanced drawing at Metro State University of Denver as well as foundations studies at The Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design in Lakewood Colorado.
She has been a member Artnauts since 2016
Being an artist is not a rational plan or decision. It is who you are and how you are in the world. You make the best of it using the circumstance you find yourself in, and take advantage of opportunities as they present themselves. As an artist my role is to inspire. If my art inspires anyone it is really satisfying.
I believe nothing is beautiful or compelling in and of itself. All beauty-all power to affect-derives from the way in which things are invested with disposition, how they are made to appear. No one knows where such an experiment will go, and it is one certainly rife with traps and dead ends. What is most beautiful about it, in fact, might well be its potential to magnify risk. To bring these ideas into such close proximity with life is to make laughter a necessary component of work and action. I know one is tentatively permitted to dream of a day when ideas might merge with philosophy itself. Take risks and do not be afraid to do the irrational. Think of every situation as a potential for an art project, no matter what life may throw at you. Learn how to trust yourself and use the technology available to amplify your message. Think outside of the frame and the white box.
I create paintings, prints, digital art, interface design, photography, sound and video works that explore the aesthetic potential and the cultural implications of seemingly well-known artifacts through the use of new technologies. These works are manifestations of new possible visual that emerge from explorations of existing but hidden dimensions behind the face of the everyday life. In these works, I often employ elements of surprise, critical investigation and subtle humor.
Nichole Hongchang is an artist and educator who currently lives and works between Denver, United State and Beijing, China. She received her MFA in Integrated Arts from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Her work is interdisciplinary, specializes in sound art, video art, performance/installation, and social practice. She is also highly proficient in painting and drawing, having studied Fine Arts in China. She exhibits widely throughout the world in Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, Palestine, Peru, Sweden, Chile, China, England as well as in the United States.
Nichole has been a member of artnauts since 2010
I continuously explore new ideas and switch genres and media in search of new possibilities in my art.
This is part of my transition from a student-artist learning how to paint to an increasingly experienced artist
trying to define my art and its purpose. My most recent
paintings explore ways to combine an organic,
free-flowing style with patterns and textures. I look for ways to fuse these elements in unusual and
unexpected ways. This process is an avenue to explore, through painting, qualities that are important to
me, both for leading a meaningful life and for creating meaningful art. Those qualities include honesty,
having an open mind and heart, truly listening to others, working to improve our world and being open to
Andrea Gordon was born and raised in Denver, Colorado.
She studied Economics at Colorado College
with an unofficial minor in Art History. After college
Andrea earned her law degree from the University of
Denver College of Law. While raising her three children, she occasionally practiced law and also started
her own mortgage closing business.
In 2010, Andrea began to pursue her life-long passion for
art by becoming a full-time artist. She has since
taken many classes at Denver’s Art Students League where
she continues to study art in a variety mediums
and genres. Andrea is an emerging painter, participating in juried shows and art markets in Denver.
Andrea has been an Artnaut since 2015.
In my art, I have chosen to create works that infuse the language of the abstract and abstracted to an art-making process that is inherently informed by the nuances of culture and emerges from a process of total and complete autonomous action; artistic narrative transforms into an impulse that is guided by intuition, reason and the will to express the experiences of life into arrangements of visual form.
The method in which I create my art is profoundly affected by the sheer fluidity and absolute sensitivity of the interplay between painting, drawing and video. These works are expressions of my trust in the power of chance and impulse to imbue the work I do with expressions that are a direct manifestation of my experiences with the act of exploring the power of experimental form.
Visual form is the vehicle by which these concepts are developed and the processes and methodologies of art making are where I can perpetually and meditatively seek truth. It is in that search that an insight into artistic integrity becomes the ultimate motivating force that causes me to seek a level of expression that entrusts the finished work of art as a unending source for revelation, mystery and profundity.
Quintín González lives and works in Denver Colorado. He earned his MFA in painting and printmaking from the Yale School of Art in 1997 and he received his BFA in painting in 1994 from the Kansas City Art Institute. He is presently an Associate Professor, of Painting and Drawing in the Department of Visual Arts, College of Arts & Media at the University of Colorado Denver. Quintín works in the areas of painting, drawing and new media and has exhibited his work nationally and internationally.
Quintin has been with the Artnuats for over a decade.
My work explores the life of the art object, building a visual dialog that extends from the internal to the external by testing the limits of narrative that exists not only within the work, but extending beyond it through process and intervention. Artifacts are created and eroded as weather, time and human interaction raise questions regarding the nature of external forces upon the artifact in the formation of its present history.
There is a fascinating paradox that occurs when confronted with ruins. Our thinking must split into two paths–one that leads us backward in time and another that travels forward, but these paths must be wandered upon simultaneously. The result may then be the creation of a complex alternative present.
We travel, perhaps great distances, to view the fragmented structures of past wonders, searching out a sense of our own identity in relation to time, recalling some Romantic notion of picturesque decline, in some attempt to reconnect ourselves with the earth. At the same time, we must reinvent these fragments that stand physically before us, searching out an imagined past which leads us into an invented future. Ruins point us toward a distorted world in which even what is now new will outlive us in some form of odd decay for other generations to translate.
It is these “translations” and reinterpretations of the artifact that my current work explores. These fragments are leftovers of a more public history, which we then make personal through our own contemporary experience. The work is layered in many senses–physically and conceptually–forming a narrative of struggle, of continuation and transformation through time. The ruin is a site from which life has departed, but the sense of its former occupation remains. There is a fullness that can be felt as we find ourselves in a constantly transforming continuum that is experienced in the present.
Melissa Furness received her MFA in Painting and Drawing from the University of Iowa with minors in both sculpture and printmaking. Furness’ work has been most influenced by her experiences of travel, which have included artist’s residencies in the countries of China, Mexico, Hungary, Poland and Ireland, as well as those in the U.S. at Kala Art Institute in Berkeley, California and the Corporation of Yaddo in upstate New York. These experiences have inspired the strain of her current work in painting and installation, which is influenced by history and infused with personal narrative.
Furness regularly exhibits her work both national and internationally, with international group exhibitions including those in Budapest, Swansea, Florence, Lecce, Zurich, and Bulgaria. She was also selected to partipate in the 2015 Biennial of the Americas, through which she resided in Mexico City for 10 weeks as an art ambassador. The artist’s 1, 2, and 3-person U.S. exhibitions have among them those at Plus Gallery in Denver, Colorado; Archangel Gallery in Palm Springs, California; the Dairy Center for the Arts in Boulder, Colorado; Ironton Gallery in Denver, Colorado; Kala Art Institute in Berkeley, California; the LoRiver Arts Gallery in Beacon, New York; Fish Tank Gallery in Brooklyn, New York; CoLAB Projects in New Orleans, Louisiana; and the Creative Arts Workshop in New Haven, Connecticut and others.
The artist is currently a national member of A.I.R. Gallery in Brooklyn, New York, where she has participated in curatorial projects surrounding women in the arts. Her work has also been featured in numerous publications, amongst them Studio Visit and New American Paintings Magazines through the Open Studios Press, the Manifest Creative Research Gallery’s International Painting and Drawing Annuals, the Creative Quarterly Journal of Art and Design, and the ArtWorld Digest. Furness is an Associate Professor of Painting and Drawing at the University of Colorado in Denver and has been with Artnauts since January of 2016.
My imagery is a collision of sources, styles, and subjects that operate as an open-ended and nonlinear construction of reality. Like the Internet, and a good soap opera, my art provides the viewer with a multiplicity of accessible inlets and subnarrative paths weaving a tangled cosmos. Crawling over, climbing out, hiding within, defacing and digesting its surroundings; these psychological environments filter culture through a feedback loop of the kitsch and banal to surface a grotesque comedy.
I work with readymade systems and personal narrative as a departure point. These structures provide me with parameters for finding, hiding, and projecting imagery. While I insert personal history within the work, I am less interested in autobiography than in viewers recognizing themselves in a hermetic complexity.
Donald Fodness earned a BA degree in Art History from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign and an MFA in Painting from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Fodness has an interdisciplinary practice that includes drawing, sculpture, furniture and installation. His drawings have been exhibited nationally and internationally. Regionally he has created site specific installations for the Denver Art Museum, The Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, The Gallery of Contemporary Art in Colorado Springs, two Biennial of the Americas, and Harmony Hammond's Material Engagements at Redline. His work has been published in New American Paintings, Sculpture Magazine, Yahoo home page, Found Magazine, The Creators Project, and art LTD.
Fodness is an active community member, curator, and collaborator with The Flying OHNO Twins and The DMB Collective. He co founded Showpen Residency, is a founding member of Hyperlink, and is an Artnaut. He has served as an educator at the college level for nearly seven years at various institutions including University of Denver, Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design, and Metro State University of Denver.
Donald has been in the Artnauts since 2013.
I am fascinated with the material qualities of plaster, gesso, ink. Of black and white and using color as a material, a physical element. Of building and eroding surfaces, of latent presence. Of telling a story that can be traced from its embryonic start to its present condition. Of my hand.
Childhood roaming the deciduous forests of Western New York, becoming a keen observer. Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry at Trinity College in D.C. and Masters of Architecture at State University of New York at Buffalo. Twenty years of Architectural practice, decades of drawing, painting, binding with string.
Michelle Fisher has been in the Artnauts since 2015.
When I wake up in the middle of a dream, I remember almost everything; the color of the room, the sound in the background, the person walking by, the smell of the air, the direction of the light, and the way I am moving within it. I believe our memories are similarly constructed. Time, event, object, and environment blend with physical experience to construct a permanent impression on our conscious and subconscious minds.
In my experience, both memories and dreams are rich with different kinds of truth and reality; those that are easily accessed and explained and those that can only be understood through the metaphor and abstraction that the mind allows. Dreams often disregard the rational organization of space, objects and time and create the “identity” of an experience that expands upon the impression of time and what can be expected from objects of everyday life. My artwork intends to explore questions related to significance, perception, and expectation in the context of memory, objects and space employing the sometimes irrational organization of dreams.
Suzanne Faris is a Studio Artist and Associate Professor of Sculpture at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, CO. She is originally from Indianapolis, Indiana but now calls Fort Collins, CO her home with her husband Jason and son Jett. Her MFA is in Sculpture from the University of Colorado, Boulder and Bachelors Degrees are in Painting and Graphic Design from Purdue University. Suzanne’s studio work is primarily sculptural and interactive.
Suzanne Faris has been a member of the Artnauts Artist Collective since 2003.
My research and image making have deep biographical roots: I grew up between Haiti and Jamaica, two post-colonial cultures divided by very distinct languages and traditions. I was raised, after the death of my father at the hands of the Duvalier dictatorship’s secret police, by grandparents who were born and raised in Benin and were devote Muslims and Voodoo practitioners. I spent my youth with them, first as a refugee in Cuba and then as an immigrant in France. They shared parental duties with Jamaican and Israeli relatives, and this complex family network profoundly shaped my worldview. My work transforms these traumatic experiences of linguistic, geographical and social displacement into a multi-layered narrative in different media: first and foremost drawing and painting, but also film, performance, and experimental sounds. It recounts my own story of isolation and exile, and it aspires to be a meditation on the very act of storytelling.
My work is primarily in the traditional methods and history of image making. It builds a visual narrative by juxtaposing images produced through traditional mediums such as painting, drawing, printmaking and photography. Since 2009, however, I have been working more extensively in experimental video, and I have developed and introduced into my work performance art, with the creation of two satirical fictional surrogates, Queen Nappy and YoYo Yolanda. My videos are about painting as much as they are about filmmaking and a strong narrative. I regard them as narrative paintings with a moving-image component and a still-life component, and the added elements of experimental sounds, text, and performance contribute to an investigation of the complexities of memory and place, spoken and body language, cultural traditionalism and the shifting political realities of race identities.
Françoise Duressé is a multiethnic multimedia artist whose work is rooted in the traditional and non-traditional practice of painting and drawing, but also in the art and performance of oral storytelling, filmmaking, and experimental music. She is interested in the relationship between spoken and body language, the complexities of memory and place, cultural traditionalism, and the shifting political realities of race identity. Duressé received a BA in Psychology and a BFA in Painting and Drawing from Wayne State University in Detroit and a MFA from Tyler School of Art, Temple University in Philadelphia. She is currently Assistant Professor of Painting and Drawing at the University of Colorado, Boulder. She has taught at Zayed University in Dubai, the College for Creative Studies in Detroit, the University of Washington in Seattle and Drexel University in Philadelphia. Her displacement from her native Caribbean to the Middle East, Southeast Asia, Europe, and now the United States, has had a profound impact on her creative work and views of the global world. Recently, she was the recipient of a Yaddo residency and honored with the Donald and Genie Rice Filmmaker Residency Grant. She has exhibited her work in the Middle East, Asia, Europe and the Americas.
Françoise has been a member of the Artnauts since 2008.
I use self-portraiture as a narrative device to explore the areas of identity, race, identity perception, African American history, and social justice. I often use my own racial identity as the topic of my work. I have experienced fluidity in the perception of my race and ethnicity as a light skinned, bi-racial Black man. My struggles to fit into a racial group category and how I fashion an authentic self, while constantly feeling like an outsider, is the foundational and emotional content of my work. I am primarily interested in the experiences of bi-racial people who might share in this struggle. Is there a unique bi-racial experience? My work seeks to find out.
Along with my personal identity struggles, the historical legacy of racism in the United States for communities of color informs my experiences. My current work responds to the police killings of unarmed Black men, women, and children across America. While this is a constant attack on the Black community, the increased international media attention, public awareness, and public movements are new phenomena. The recent killings of Trayvon Martin and Eric Garner to Tamir Rice and Michael Brown, illustrate that Black victims can range in age from 12 to 50 years old. This raises the question of the value of Black bodies in contemporary America, which is linked to a long history of violence against its Black population through slavery, Jim Crow, and mass incarceration. My aim is to locate myself in this discussion as a bi-racial Black man who has both been the victim of racism and has in some instances “passed” for white because of my light skin. I see this as the cost of a legacy of racism that particularly troubles me and this conversation must continue.
Michael Dixon is an artist working primarily with oil paint. He was born in San Diego, California, and received his MFA from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Dixon is currently an Associate Professor at Albion College, a four-year liberal arts school in Michigan. His work has been shown both nationally and internationally at museums, universities, art centers, alternative spaces, and galleries. Dixon explores the personal, societal, and aesthetic struggles of belonging to both "white" and "black" racial and cultural identities, yet simultaneously belonging fully to neither. The works of artists such as Robert Colescott, Beverly McIver, Michael Ray Charles, Glenn Ligon, and Kerry James Marshall have informed his work. Michael Dixon started with the Artnauts at the beginning of 2016.
I work with the collision and interpretation of various forms of nature, mythology, art history, and metaphysics. I am interested in unexpected relationships, the way a spider web mimics a wheel, the commonality between Dr. Seuss and the Dalai Lama, the resemblance between patterns in the constellations of the stars and the minute particulars inside the human body. I become fascinated with the materials: mica recreated as a skin or a chamber, thread floating on diaphanous fabric, knitted metal mesh emerging from a sand floor, the lyrical shape of a sphere of umbrellas, etc. The materials become a jumping off point to explore the nature of a veil, the phenomenology of an umbrella, or communication between plant life. Do we perceive in tiny bits of information, because otherwise so much beauty would knock us over? Like the French poet, Paul Valery, who wrote, “ Man’s great misfortune is that he has no organ, no kind of eyelid or brake, to mask or block a thought, or all thought, when he wants to.” It seems we need to be able to temporarily turn off the bombardment of stimuli, in order to re-emerge with new eyes. I hope my work acts as a kind of magic cloak, gathering fields of color and texture ever present in nature, reinventing and re-issuing them into another form. Like a butterfly that emerges from a chrysalis, when a filter is allowed to widen, a universal truth, or a band of possible truths may emerge, moving to a language that has been pulsating under our eyelids all the time.
Rebecca DiDomenico was born in Greenbrae, California. She attended school at Claremont College, Tribhuvan University in Nepal and graduated from the University of Colorado with a BA in English Literature. In DiDomenico’s world, there is no separation between art and life, studio and home. Her work is concerned with the collision and interpenetration of various forms of nature, mythology, art history and metaphysics. With her innate, relentless curiosity, DiDomenico casts the net of her imagination wide. “I am interested in unexpected relationships, the way a spider web mimics a wheel, the commonality between Dr. Seuss and the Dali Lama, the resemblance between patterns in the constellations of the stars and the minute particles inside the human body.”
A selected list of her exhibitions, collections and publications includes Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art; Museum of Contemporary Art, Denver; Denver International Airport; San Francisco Craft & Folk Art Museum; Denver Art Museum; Artspace; Art Papers; Artweek; Marin Independent Journal; The Washington Post; Art in America; and The New York Times.
Rebecca DiDomenico has been a member of Artnauts since 2007
Dennis P Dalton
I work two dimensionally in drawing and printmaking. My work is narrative and involves the figure. Usually, the main figures are in a gestural pose that are either symbolic or geometrically related to the composition. I find most of my compositional inspiration to come from drawing imaginary light sources and its impact on mood and composition. German Expressionism and film noir has influenced my interest in this aspect of creating a visual reality. Dramatic perspective is also dominant in my compositions. I work in lithography, etching and relief.
Dennis Dalton was born in Toledo Ohio and attended the University of Toledo while completing his art training at the Toledo Museum of Art School of Design receiving a BFA in Fine Art. He was accepted into the graduate school at CU Boulder and was there for two years. After receiving a full scholarship to the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, Dennis completed his graduate studies there with an MFA in 1984. Dennis has taught drawing and printmaking at Northeastern University, Texas A&M and Colorado State University-Pueblo. He received a Colorado Council on the Arts Drawing Fellowship , three AIPP Art in Public Places Commissions in Colorado and has exhibited regionally and internationally in 135 exhibitions since 2000. His work is in 14 public collections including Graphic Chemical and Ink in Chicago, Taylor Museum in Colorado Springs, Yuma Art Center, Curtis Art Center in Greenwood Village, Denver Art Museum and Ningxia University, Yinchuan China. Dennis currently lives in Pueblo but maintains a printmaking studio on his property close to LaVeta.
Dennis is one of the four founding members of the Artnauts which started in 1995.
It is a search to bring visual image to what is intangable with reference, experience and nothing.
Born in New York USA in 1963 Andrew Connelly has been a practicing professional artist since the early 1990’s. Mainly noted for installation, performance and mixed media sculpture, Connelly has exhibited his works in contemporary museums and alternative gallery spaces around the US most notably Forum For Contemporary Art St. Louis, Boca Raton Museum of Art, Tampa Museum of Art and at the Center for Contemporary Art Sacramento. His works have been published in Art in America, Art Week, New Art examiner and the Village Voice. In 2010 Connelly spent a sabbatical semester making and exhibiting his work in New Delhi, India and since his return has had works in Valdivia, Chile, Cuernavaca, Mexico and Leticia Columbia, with an artist collective called ARTNUATS. In 2014 Connelly was awarded a fellowship from the Kala Art Institute in Berkeley, CA for a six-month artist in residency.
Connelly holds a BFA from Alfred University and an MFA from University of Colorado Boulder and attended Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Madison, MN. He is currently a professor at Sacramento State University where he has been teaching sculpture, installation and performance art since 2003. Previous Connelly taught at University of Colorado, Denver, Washington University, St. Louis and Ringling School of Art and Design, Sarasota FL.
Andrew Connelly Has been an ARTNAUT since 2010.
I investigate defunct city blocks, rural communities, industrial landscapes and the subcultures that exist within them. My curiosity in these sites is a function of my interest in the spaces of abjection and class structures. Through architectural forms, drawings, and reclaimed objects I create a stage that reveals the way in which life emerges within these unexpected situations.
The exploration of so-called “dirty towns” is often my departure point. I gather roadside castoffs, imagining the life that these objects once led. In my hands, these objects are born again; the grim begins to contrast with the glam. Through their transformation, I engender circumstances that depict the space in between dreams and reality. The work is semi- autobiographical, exploring memory and the imagination in a nonlinear fashion. The underlying narratives within the work are a combination of my personal history, bar room tales, and “redneck” stereotypes as well as an amalgamation of abstract memories and appropriated stories.
Amber Cobb is a Colorado based artist, living and working in the Denver area. In 2011 she received her M.F.A. in Sculpture from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Since graduating she has created a diverse body of work that explores the duality of the attractive and the abject. Cobb has been exhibited in a number of exhibitions both nationally and internationally. This includes xiao shan xiao at the Hunan Province Art Museum in Kaifeng, China, Sweat Baby Sweat in Los Angeles, and Direct Connect in Berlin. She has shown in numerous exhibitions and institutions in the Colorado region including the Arvada Center, Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design, Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, and at RedLine where she is currently participating in a two-year artist residency.
In 2013 Cobb participated in an artist residency at Demiurge Design where she created her most monumental sculpture to date. Her full size concrete mattress, As I Adapt was included in RedLine’s Not Exactly exhibition. During this year she had her first solo show at the Gildar Gallery and was included in The Biennial of Americas. She has a forthcoming installation as well as an artist residency at 516 Arts in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 2014.
Amber Cobb has been with Artnauts since 2014
Information saturation is usually the starting point for my work; my process involves fragmenting and reconstituting the digital and analog information that surrounds and immerses me. I reconstruct it, creating contemplative works full of invented objects, spaces and topographies.
I create art using industry standard software such as Maya, After Effects and Photoshop, as well as open-source software, and mobile applications. The technological innovations that make my practice possible were developed to meet other needs, such as to create military simulations, or to provide media tools for the entertainment industry.
Living in the post-digital era, I believe that using digital materials and tools is the way to examine the contemporary moment. Almost everything we experience passes through digital channels and becomes data. While I’m using the technologies developed for 21st century capitalism, the way I’m using them becomes a critique of the corporate model of technology—a model designed for consumption of media. Instead the technologies are used to question, to assert creative agency, and to reimagine the virtual and physical world around me.
Rachel Clarke (born UK) is an artist, writer, curator and educator living in Sacramento, CA. She is Professor of New Media in the Art Department at Cal State, Sacramento. Clarke is the founding editor of Media-N the CAA New Media Caucus’s international journal. She served as Editor-in-Chief of Media-N from 2005 – 2011, and is currently serving on the Editorial Board.
Solo/two person exhibitions include: Unmapping at the University of Georgia in fall 2013; Awakenings at CSU Stanislaus University Art Gallery, CA in 2010; and Between at Reynolds Gallery, University of the Pacific, Stockton, CA in 2009. Recent group exhibitions include AR2 View for V1B3, launched at CAA NYC in Feb 2013; Currents International Festival of New Media, Santa Fe, NM in June 2012; Ostranenie at Aggregate Space, Oakland, CA in 2012; and Really-Fake at William Paterson University, NJ in 2011.
Commissions include Crocker Mosaic, a new media participatory artwork created in collaboration with composer Stephen Blumberg for the opening of Sacramento’s Crocker Art Museum extension in October 2010. In 2011 she co-curated an exhibition of experimental 3D filmmaking with artist Claudia Hart of the School of the Art Institute, Chicago, entitled The Real-Fake: Simulation Technology after Photography. The show toured in the US in 2012. Working in collaboration with Sacramento Metropolitan Art Commission she is artist/curator for an NEA funded augmented reality public art project, Broadway Augmented to be located in the Broadway Corridor in Sacramento, launching in fall 2014.
Rachel Clarke joined Arnauts in 2014.
Ceas’ work evolves around global social issues where tension exists, especially religiously. Her work is interdisciplinary and expressed through various mediums to include installation, drawing, collage, juxtaposition of objects, street art public intervention, and observational photography, with an aim to contrast cultural incongruities for collective discourse. Often Ceas leads collaborative social practice projects with students and colleagues.
Sandra Jean Ceas lives in the foothills outside of Denver, Colorado, creates in her home studio and exhibits internationally. She is a Professor of Art and Religious Studies, teaching as adjunct when the time permits and speaks internationally about art and spirituality. In the last five years, Ceas has experienced an annual artist-in-residence in Italy, Morocco, New Mexico, New York and Mexico.
Sandra Jean Ceas has been in the Artnaut since 2013.
This body of work is grounded in fundamental techniques of drawing where the act of creating marks and images becomes a focused, irrepressible and introspective activity. These marks are rhythmic in evolution on the page, creating a momentum I can’t interrupt while drawing. Individual marks may be simple and subtle, but as the marks on the paper accumulate, form and image become more evident. Works on paper begin from the obsessive mark using a wide variety of materials to make and imply lines and forms. The images in my work relate to natural forms found in and around the hills of Utah but are abstracted and layered allowing for multiple interpretations. Small plants, so delicate, and yet so strong in their struggle to survive are what I often use to represent my themes. These small humble plants are elevated to the majestic as they are enlarged to become the central focus of my images, yet they retain their simplicity of form. The tangle of scrub oak branches is reminiscent of human forms, while the abstract lines can perhaps be interpreted as trails in both physical and metaphorical senses. Beneath these forms are simple and subtle ink trails with a density of accumulated ink creating soft variations in texture. The white of the paper seemingly becomes whiter in areas of dense trails. The endless variation mesmerizes me and compels me to continue exploring the possibilities on the page. These images, these icons of the trail, represent to me the wholeness of our existence and the nature of our journey through this life.
Born in Michigan, Sandy Brunvand moved to Salt Lake City in 1982. Sandy is an Assistant Professor (Lecturer) in art education in the Department of Art and Art History, University of Utah. After receiving her MFA in 2003, she co-founded Saltgrass Printmakers, a non-profit printmaking studio and gallery located in Sugarhouse. As well as teaching studio and art education courses, at the U of U, Brunvand has also developed and taught a variety of professional development workshops for K-12 educators. These workshops have been delivered for the University of Utah, Salt Lake Art Center (Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, UMOCA), Jordan School District, Salt lake School District, Granite School District, and Art Works For Kids.
Brunvand’s artwork incorporates painting, drawing, printmaking, and mixed media. Her work has shown throughout the United States, as well as in Canada, England, New Zealand, and Hong Kong, China, Colombia, Palestine, Hungary, and Scotland. Commissions include: Utah Museum of Fine Arts, Salt Lake Art Center (UMOCA), and Utah Arts Council. Grants include Utah Arts Council Established Artist Grant, multiple grants from Art Works for Kids, and the University of Utah Graduate research fellowship. Brunvand was recently named one of Utah’s 15 most influential artists, voted on by Utah’s on-line arts magazine, Artists of Utah-15BYTES.
As well as making, teaching and viewing art Brunvand also has a passion for playing blues and bluegrass music and hiking in the mountains with her husband Erik, and dog, Scruggs.
Sandy Brunvand has been with Artnauts since 2013.
My intention is to reveal a truth that will draw the viewer closer to contemplate his or her own place. I am interested in discovery through imagination and the imprint we are left with as a record or a fragment of actual experience. My work references moments in history reflecting perceptions related to the idea of place. Perceptions of place can instill comfort even when danger and uncertainty exists. For me place is not merely a reflection of the imagination, but also a reflection of experience contextualized by nature, and the ideas motivated by a history. With my work I pursue themes of nature that are active throughout the urban environment. The city is moving, breathing and fluid with energy. I am interested in the interaction between the city and its inhabitants, how people adjust to and affect their own soundings. My drawings, installation and sculpture are pathways for exploration. Through the act of making I work to gain insight that may ground me to my experiences. I make work that reveals my response to nature, my ideas and perceptions of the world around me.
In 2010 Kevin Bouck earned his Bachelors of FineArt in Studio Art from Rocky Mountain College ofArt and Design, and in 2012 earned his Masters ofFine Art from Rhode Island School of Design. Aftermore than two years living in the ATE (Ah-Tey)district of Lima, Peru he recently moved back to the United States where he lives with his wife and Children. As a child Kevin spent time living inLagos, Nigeria. He has more recently spent a considerable time living in Poland, Denmark, Mexico and Peru.
Kevin Has been a member of Artnauts since 2015.
Joo Yeon Woo
As a culturally displaced artist, I have been drawn to the theme of cultural displacement and identity, and to social psychological and cross-cultural studies that are heavily influenced by immigrant experiences and by the interaction between people and space. My creative works explore the blurred boundaries of today’s nomadic life style. Today’s nomadism is not that of unrestricted wandering; it is based on a global nomadic culture. Our nomadic lifestyle redefines the meaning of ‘home’ as something that one may carry only in one’s mind or in one’s own character. In addition, our experiences are now multi-cultural, transcending geographic locations and the ethnic characteristics of our living environments. My most recent projects have adopted a documentary approach and artistic archives to present my experiences of dislocation and rootlessness in our contemporary nomadic culture.
Joo Yeon Woo was born in Daegu, South Korea and came to the United States in 2003. She received her MFA in Drawing and Painting from the Pennsylvania State University and an earlier MFA from Hongik University, Seoul in South Korea. Her artworks mostly consist of drawing, painting, video, and photography, and more specifically in the fusing of these media, such as acrylic painting on a digital pigment print, video from a still image, photography from a paper cut object. She has had solo shows nationally and internationally including 1925 gallery at University of Wisconsin-Madison, Television 12 gallery, Seoul, Korea, and Art Museum of Kyoungpook National University, Daegu, Korea. Joo Yeon Woo is an Assistant Professor in the Drawing and Painting at University of South Florida.
Joo has been in the Artnaut since 2008.
My work is a response to the effects of globalization on the natural environment and ethnic cultures. As globalization threatens to overwhelm the world via consumerism and environmental degradation, the question of how we preserve ethnic identities and natural environments has become a significant issue in my thoughts and artwork. During my travels around the world and time living in Mongolia, I have become increasingly aware of the conflicting relationship between nature and culture. The viral effects of globalization are rapidly destroying unique ethnic cultures and replacing them with homogenized consumer based cultures that expel vast amounts of unnecessary waste in our environments where it will remain for countless generations.
Recycling is a way of mitigating the disturbing amount of waste created by mass production and consumerism. Working with mass-produced discarded materials, I attempt to express the increasing impacts globalization has on us as well as our environment. I look to the way our natural landscapes are being altered as they are blanketed by our endless waste and through this, I work to create thought provoking and humorous sculptures from the heaps of discarded inner tubes, tires, and plastic bags I find.
Born in 1968, Jessica Moon Bernstein was raised in Ohio by a Nicaraguan Arab mother and an Irish German-Jew father. She earned BA degree in International Affairs and Visual Arts and an MA in 1995 from the University of Colorado at Boulder. She also studied art history and studio arts at the Instituto Internacional in Madrid, Spain. Following her undergraduate degree she lived in Mongolia for three years, working for the Peace Corps and the United Nations Biodiversity Project. She has traveled extensively in North and South America, Europe, and Asia. Jessica was an artist in residence at Anderson Ranch Art Center in 2007. Jessica’s work has been shown in Denver, Houston, Columbus, and San Francisco at Venues including the Biennial of the Americas in Denver, CO, Houston Art League, Ohio Craft Museum, the Dairy Center for the Arts, Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art and the Longmont Museum. She currently lives and works in Boulder, Colorado.
Jessica has been in the Artnaut since 2014.
My work is supposed to be about ‘everything’. About people, about the universe, about absurdism and metaphysics and the tarot and the occult and the internet and all other reasonsI constantly question my perception and existence.
I am overwhelmed by the universe. I am overwhelmed by my relation to it, by your relation to it, by the fact that we have no idea why we are actually here, as, as like beings. Why the fuck are we on this little rock hurtling through space, a giant infinite expanse of unknown, and there are SO MANY of us and even if I read about Bohm’s holographic model of the universe and allow myself to see the interconnectedness of everything and to accept and explore the idea that we might be a projection of a deeper level of reality, or that tarot cards really do work, or that who I am is somewhat determined by the position of the planets when I was born - there’s still no answer to the why.
We literally don’t know anything. If you look at how human modes of perception and representation have evolved over time, even just the last 200 years, what we are perceiving now is not ‘actual reality.’ It is only what our brains are capable of perceiving at this time. It’s an illusion and ultimately your own subjective consciousness is the only thing you will ever know and then you will die and ultimately have no idea why you or anybody else ended up playing.
Taylor Balkissoon was born in Toronto to French Canadian and Jamaican parents and Immigrated to The United States as a child. She grew up in Denver and received her BFA from the University of Colorado Denver in 2014. She is a regular curator at DATELINE and a guest curator at MCA Denver.
My paintings reference the natural world. Images are abstracted and recombined to convey the patterns, rhythms, and underlying forces inherent in our immediate environment. They merge an idea of place with a sense of memory and existence and address loss of nature relative to loss of memory, people, and place.
In alteration of colors, forms and perspectives, and through multiple transparent glazes, the paintings evoke an alternative universe in which connections are made between time and location, and imagined space and physical existence.
Trine is a graduate of The Rhode Island School of Design and spent a year in the European Honors Program in Rome, Italy. After graduating, she lived in New York City, working for Betty Parsons Gallery and pursuing her own studio work. Since moving to Colorado she has become a full time painter and has exhibited her work in galleries and museums nationwide. Her work has been reviewed in Art in America, ArtNews and the New Art Examiner.
Trine has done commissions for the city of Denver, the state of Colorado and companies such as the Four Seasons Hotel, the Peninsula Hotel Hong Kong, and Jacobs Engineering. Other collections include Chase Manhattan, HBSC and Century Link, the University of Iowa and the Japanese Consulate.
Trine currently lives and works in Denver, Colorado.