Journal

Wild Things

Wild Things
A little over a year ago, I was invited to exhibit my work in the Ruth Brennan Gallery at the Dahl Art Museum in Rapid City, South Dakota. At that time, I was working on several series of work dedicated to the restoration of wild spaces in the Chicago area. These works were informed and inspired by the re-wilding efforts taking place along Chicago's lakefront, in the Cook County Forest Preserve, and at Big Marsh Park on the southeast side of the city. Continue reading

New Season, New Series

New Season, New Series

During the month of September, artists focused on the concept of Extraction by selecting a specific area of an image made in the previous few months and developing a series from it. New works were constructed through multiple prompts that included working in a circular format, exploring new materials, methods, and surfaces, and infusing images with the spirit of contemporary artists of interest. The images below showcase these ongoing serial explorations.

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Summer Swept

Summer Swept
Chicago comes alive each summer with its beautiful lakefront and breathtaking views of Lake Michigan, bright cerulean blue skies, plush canopies of trees, colorful gardens of all shapes and sizes, and a wonderful abundance of urban energy. As an artist drawn to warm weather and being outdoors, soaking in the endless visual displays of nature in combination with the city's built environment fills me up with a dizzying amount of inspiration to consider and explore in the cooler months ahead. Continue reading

Emanations

Emanations

During the month of December, we worked with the concept of emanations, a thing or issue that spreads out from a source, while viewing videos of natural energies, forms, and phenomena. These include Reindeer Cyclones, Robert Smithson's Spiral Jetty, snowflake designs, ice crystal growing on glass and ice crystals freezing inside bubbles. Each of these subjects were explored on sketchbooks pages using a 5"x 5" square format and a wide range of drawing and painting materials.

 

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Constellations and Murmurations

Constellations and Murmurations
During the month of November, the artists in our Envision Program explored the concepts of Constellations and Murmurations in their sketchbooks. These subjects provided engaging opportunities for working with complex environments and natural phenomena while working with a succession of drawn and painted layers. Continue reading

The Artist and the Sketchbook - July 2022

The Artist and the Sketchbook - July 2022
During the month of July, we explored the physical world in our sketchbooks by observing the built structures and shifting forces of the earth's surface. We focused on the the layers, textures, and patterns seen in areas of strata and erosion and experimented with ways they could be visualized through layered ink and watercolor washes, linear mapping, combining wet and dry media, and by using dry earth pigments. Continue reading

Water Worlds Exhibition 2022

Water Worlds Exhibition 2022
Over the past six months or so, we have been busy creating work for our upcoming Water Worlds exhibition, opening June 10th, 2022 at the Anchor Building Gallery in St. Clair Shores, Michigan. Hosted by artist and marina owner Virginia Carstarphen, the show will be installed in a massive marina structure located on Lake Saint Clair that is usually reserved for boat storage. We are very grateful to Virginia and her husband Todd for providing this exciting opportunity for all of our artists. Continue reading

Summer Roundup

Summer Roundup

As we come to the end of August, there is that familiar feeling in the air -- the one that reminds us that the summer went by way too quickly and those back-to-school-days are right around the corner. It is reassuring that despite all the disruption from the pandemic, our calendars, schedules, rituals, and rites of passage keep moving us ahead. Even with the strange pandemic fog that we've been collectively suspended in for over a year and a half, the anticipation of seasonal change continues to keep us on track and offer new possibilities for growth and discovery.

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A Virtual Dinner Party

A Virtual Dinner Party
Our wonderful community of artists came together on Tuesday, April 27th for our much anticipated Virtual Dinner Party. This project came about after we had collectively been exploring the tondo, or circular shape, as a new compositional format. We had also been having conversations throughout the pandemic about which artists through history we would enjoy having dinner with, imagining the lively conversations that would ensue between artists past and present. Since the tondo form could so readily be imagined as a dinner plate, it seemed the ideal time to come together for a virtual dinner party (with Judy Chicago's famous Dinner Party installation not far from our thoughts). Continue reading