University of Kentucky

Installation

Vignette: Amalia Galdona Broche

“Knotty Mountains Installation” by Amalia Galdona Broche, Fiber, 2019

“Knotty Mountains Installation” by Amalia Galdona Broche, Fiber, 2019

Amalia Galdona Broche describes herself as, “Living in a cultural in-between.” Born in Cuba, she has lived in the United States for the last 10 years. Now 25, her time in America frames the “coming-of-age” period that is often the most formative time in the identity of an artist.

“I am interested in the relationship between nature and nurture and how our surroundings shape character and identity,” she explains. “Through the process of collecting, tearing, breaking, joining, weaving, knotting and assembling, I mimic my journey through life, constantly adapting to the experiences, places and people around me.” 

“TheScream” by Amalia Galdona Broche, Fiber and pins, 40x15x15in, 2018

“TheScream” by Amalia Galdona Broche, Fiber and pins, 40x15x15in, 2018

“I use the cyanotype photo process to capture and present, in an abstracted manner, the way in which our environment imprints onto our identity. Currently, I explore figures through form, material, and surface treatment. The assemblage of woven structures with or created with discarded textiles creates a rich surface texture that is sometimes further altered through photo processes. By referencing the syncretizing of religious and cultural beliefs, as well as Spanish and Afro-Cuban culture in my work, I deal with the intricacies of the building and development of my own character as a product of colonization and appropriation.”

Broche’s use of the word syncretize in her statement is key. The Oxford Dictionary defines it as the ‘Attempt to amalgamate or reconcile (differing things, especially religious beliefs, cultural elements, or schools of thought),’ and the resulting tension in the work is palpable. The forms that are suggestive of human figures are colorful and vital, imbued with life and energy yet also not as open as they might be, their full identity occluded among the layers of material (“The Scream”). The more abstract constructions build atmosphere and context with the same air of muffled expression, curtains capturing a festive quality but also allowing some degree of barricade .

It may not be wrong to see a commentary of the American propensity for cultural approbation at work here, yet Broche’s statement also reinforces her own accountability in this exploration of identity.

“I find this creative process to be a meditative dance of making and building, using art and craft and their history to continue a conversation about otherness, feminism, and the global south.”  

Recent Exhibitions:

2019 Of Problems and Some Other Knots, Locker 666, Lamar Dodd School of Art, University of Georgia, GA
2018 Nurtured Nature, Glass Gallery, Lamar Dodd School of Art, University of Georgia, Athens, GA
2017 The Art of Structure, Still Point Arts, Virtual Gallery

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Hometown: Santa Clara, Cuba
Education: MFA candidate, University of Kentucky, 2021
BFA, with a concentration in Sculpture, Jacksonville University, 2016; BA, with a concentration in Art History, Jacksonville University, 2016, Departmental Honors in Art, Minor: Business Administration
Website: amaliagaldonabroche.com
Instagram: agaldonab

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“Sisters My Lady of Charity (left) and Our Lady of Regla (right)” by Amalia Galdona Broche, Fiber installation, 58x40x25in / 50x20x20in, 2018

“Sisters My Lady of Charity (left) and Our Lady of Regla (right)” by Amalia Galdona Broche, Fiber installation, 58x40x25in / 50x20x20in, 2018

“Sisters Our Lady of Regla” by Amalia Galdona Broche, Fiber installation, 50x20x20in, 2018

“Sisters Our Lady of Regla” by Amalia Galdona Broche, Fiber installation, 50x20x20in, 2018

“Knots in the Times of Trouble. Amalia Galdona Broche, Fiber and wire, 70x30x30in, 2019

“Knots in the Times of Trouble. Amalia Galdona Broche, Fiber and wire, 70x30x30in, 2019

Written by Keith Waits. Entire contents copyright © 2018 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved. In addition to his work at the LVA, Keith is also the Managing Editor of a website, Arts-Louisville.com, which covers local visual arts, theatre, and music in Louisville.

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Ceramics

Student Spotlight: Abigail Munger

"Pregnant Woman 2" by Abigail Munger, Ceramic, 3x6in, 2017

"Pregnant Woman 2" by Abigail Munger, Ceramic, 3x6in, 2017

In her sculpture “So fake you want to eat them” Abigail Munger shows meticulous craft in carving foam into convincing replicas of sushi, so when we are presented with the primitive forms of “Pregnant Woman 2”, we must consider the artist’s choice to work in such a rough, unfinished manner. The figure clearly references ancient sculptures such as “The Venus of Willendorf”, with the full rounded shapes of the historical fertility symbol and carved in geometric patterns. 

Munger states that her goal is to show the complexity of darkness and fear. “Darkness and Death is not always meant to be ugly or scared. Sometimes the darkness can be what shines a light at the end of the tunnel. My solo senior show is focused on that Beauty found in Darkness.” 

"So fake you want to eat them" by Abigail Munger, Carved foam, 7x8in, 2016

"So fake you want to eat them" by Abigail Munger, Carved foam, 7x8in, 2016

Munger has also exhibited two-dimensional works in conjunction with the annual Evening With Poe theatrical production at the Frazier History Museum. The stark and simple graphic images point to the artist’s interest in more macabre subjects.

“Overall my goal is to tap into a world that not many people focus on. Rather that darkness comes from the "freaks" hidden under a circus tent, or the dead body under the floor boards that you still hear the beating heart of.” 

Munger exhibited, "Pregnant Woman 2" in the Carey Ellis Art Show at the University of Kentucky. The piece was recognized with a Theophilia Joan Oexmann Award under the category of Ceramic. 

Hometown: Louisville, Kentucky
Education: BA, Brescia University, Kentucky, 2018
Website: Abigailmunger.wixsite.com
 

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"Woman in Relief" by Abigail Munger, Fired clay, 5x9in, 2017

"Woman in Relief" by Abigail Munger, Fired clay, 5x9in, 2017

"Painted Paper Flower" by Abigail Munger, Acrylic painted paper, 13in, 2015

"Painted Paper Flower" by Abigail Munger, Acrylic painted paper, 13in, 2015

"Quoth the Heart... Nevermore" by Abigail Munger, Acrylic print, 11x14in, 2017

"Quoth the Heart... Nevermore" by Abigail Munger, Acrylic print, 11x14in, 2017


Written by Keith Waits. Entire contents copyright © 2018 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved.

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Drawing, Painting

Vignette: Elle Brown

“I believe that being a woman is very important, especially in a world that predominantly shuts us down.” – Elle Brown

"A Transitioning" by Elle Brown (detail), Charcoal on paper, 163x18in, 2017, POR

"A Transitioning" by Elle Brown (detail), Charcoal on paper, 163x18in, 2017, POR

Every art student has a portfolio of work from figure drawing classes, but Elle Brown, a recent BFA recipient from the University of Kentucky, has kept her focus on the human form, developing her studies into a highly personal exploration of gender, body image, and identity.

"A Transitioning" by Elle Brown, Charcoal on paper, 163x18in, 2017, POR

"A Transitioning" by Elle Brown, Charcoal on paper, 163x18in, 2017, POR

“The general direction my work has been heading in explores larger scale drawings, prints, and paintings using layered print matrixes and inks. Like most of the work I make, my subject matter is mainly the nude female form, considering my work deals with the struggles and misconceptions of my own body image being portrayed to the world in a generation predominantly led by beauty. Body image is something many people, including me, struggle with.”

“The reason I use the female form is because I believe that being a woman is very important, especially in a world that predominantly shuts us down. Fitting into society has always been an enormous concern of mine, to a point where I would alter my image or personality to seem more likeable or approachable. I want my work to ideally omit my feelings and struggles that I have faced, I wish to come to not only love and respect my body and myself, but also not compare myself with the harsh fictions of people portrayed around me.”

Brown appears to be building an ongoing narrative through the use of multiple drawings. In one, extended, series of five-minute drawings that stretches around the walls of the gallery, she creates a frieze-like presence around us using our innate sense of linear flow to lead us into “reading” the work as we would a comic book panel.  "Being an art history minor and traveling through Europe, I would see elaborate friezes which is what always fascinated me the most about the buildings. Depicting movement and interaction, I created this installation as a viewing to see the day to day, pure form of a woman."

“I want to portray the mood and feelings of my own body. I do this by using a muted color palette along with subject matter connected to these feelings. I also play with what makes a piece of work finished or unfinished. I believe there is a giving balance that expresses gestural implied shapes, and skillful specific lines.”

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Hometown: Louisville, Kentucky
Education: BFA, Art Studio, University of Kentucky, Minor, Art History
Website: wixsite/ellebrown
Instagram: ellebrownart

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"Free Yet Restricted" by Elle Brown, Oil on canvas, 36x48in, 2017, POR

"Free Yet Restricted" by Elle Brown, Oil on canvas, 36x48in, 2017, POR

"Still" by Elle Brown, Charcoal on paper, 22x30in, 2017, POR

"Still" by Elle Brown, Charcoal on paper, 22x30in, 2017, POR

"Con(fusion)" by Elle Brown, Charcoal on paper, 22x30in, 2017, POR

"Con(fusion)" by Elle Brown, Charcoal on paper, 22x30in, 2017, POR

"Imagined Trophy" by Elle Brown, Oil on canvas, 41x58in, 2017, POR

"Imagined Trophy" by Elle Brown, Oil on canvas, 41x58in, 2017, POR

"Light Through The Storm" by Elle Brown, Charcoal on paper, 10x13in, 2018, POR

"Light Through The Storm" by Elle Brown, Charcoal on paper, 10x13in, 2018, POR

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Written by Keith Waits. Entire contents copyright © 2018 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved.