human

Ceramics

Vignette: Amy Chase

"Complacency" by Amy Chase, 9x5.5x5in, Porcelain Cone

"Complacency" by Amy Chase, 9x5.5x5in, Porcelain Cone

It was recently announced that Amy Chase is one of the recipients of the 2017 Al Smith Fellowship. The prestigious award, named in honor of former arts council chair and Kentucky journalist Al Smith, recognizes professional artists who have reached a high level of achievement in their careers. Since its beginning in 1983, the program has provided more than $2.5 million in funding to artists in the visual arts, literary arts, media arts, composing and choreography. In this round of funding, the fellowships were awarded to artists in the choreography and literary arts disciplines.

Examining a selection of Amy Chase’s work, one gets the sense that a community has been built. The forms are often abstract, but the relationships are clearly drawn, and some of the figures capture very human postures and attitudes. Those figures live on various platforms, so there is always a context of isolation or separation. Sometimes characters are drawn closer, and other times they are widening the distance between them. Often, and most irresistibly, two of them (for they almost always seem to come in pairs) are connected by a slender thread, pulling on their tether in a precarious fashion that creates a delicate tension.

"Compliance" by Amy Chase, 10x8x10in, Porcelain

"Compliance" by Amy Chase, 10x8x10in, Porcelain

“The surface consists of intricate patterns that are applied using precise silkscreened slip and glazing techniques. These choices in pattern address personal experiences, while at the same time evoking the viewer’s own memories.”

Chase’s artist’s statement makes it explicit that these patterns and textures are drawn from childhood memory, so there is an undeniable element of autobiography in this work. Yet the abstraction puts us at a distance; we are empathetic because the fundamental dynamic at play resonates within our own memory. The anonymity allows us to see ourselves in this nebulous but welcoming community.

"Enticement" by Amy Chase, 3x4x3in, Porcelain, Underglaze, Luster

"Enticement" by Amy Chase, 3x4x3in, Porcelain, Underglaze, Luster

Chase is currently the Design Coordinator for Louisville Visual Art in Louisville, Kentucky. Since residing in Louisville she has also been the Ceramics Instructor and Gallery Director at Spot 5 Art Studio and taught Ceramics at Jefferson Community and Technical College. From 2010–2012 she was the Adjunct Professor of Ceramics at Southeast Missouri State University located in Cape Girardeau, Missouri.

Amy Chase has been awarded the title of ‘Emerging Artist’ by American Style magazine, has been featured in Ceramics Monthly, Clay Times, 500 Ceramic Sculptures and 500 Ceramic Vases. Chase has also has an extensive exhibition record including venues such as: The Clay Studio in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; The Clay Studio of Missoula in Missoula, Montana; The Washington Project for the Arts in Washington D.C.; Carbondale Clay Center in Carbondale, Colorado and Lincoln Arts in Lincoln, California.

Hometown: Murray, Kentucky
Education: BFA, Murray State University; MFA, Southern Illinois University
Website: http://amychaseceramics.com

"Inclination" by Amy Chase, 8x4x3in, Earthenware, Fibers

"Inclination" by Amy Chase, 8x4x3in, Earthenware, Fibers

"Solidarity" by Amy Chase, 9x7x4in, Porcelain, Stoneware, Flocking, String, Luster

"Solidarity" by Amy Chase, 9x7x4in, Porcelain, Stoneware, Flocking, String, Luster

"Deciphering Fiction" by Amy Chase,  6x6x6in, Terracotta, Wood, String, Underglaze

"Deciphering Fiction" by Amy Chase,  6x6x6in, Terracotta, Wood, String, Underglaze

Written by Keith Waits. Entire contents copyright © 2017 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved.

Are you interested in being on Artebella?  Click here  to learn more.

Are you interested in being on Artebella? Click here to learn more.

Painting

Q&A: Quappi Projects


“We have more knowledge than at any time in human history, yet not only do we not seem comforted or buoyed by that knowledge, we have - or some of us have, I suppose - begun to openly reject knowledge, experience and even commonly agreed-upon facts.“ – John Brooks


Artist, John Brooks

Artist, John Brooks

Q&A with John Brooks about Quappi Projects

‘Quappi’ was the nickname of Mathilde von Kaulbach, who was married to German New Objectivist painter Max Beckmann (1884-1950). It was derived from the similarity of her surname to the German word Kaulquappe, meaning ‘tadpole’.

It is a singular phrase with no other formal meaning, which seems to delight Louisville artist John Brooks, and so he chose it as the moniker of his new exhibition initiative, Quappi Projects. Occupying most of his current studio space at 1520 B Lytle Street in the Portland neighborhood, the mission is to showcase four artists each year from in and outside of Louisville. The inaugural show will be work of Adam Chuck, a Cleveland, Ohio native, now living and making work in Brooklyn, New York.

What motivated you to devote some of your studio space to exhibition space for other artists?

"Diogo In Pink" by Adam Chuck, 5x7in, oil on mylar

"Diogo In Pink" by Adam Chuck, 5x7in, oil on mylar

Running a gallery is an endeavor I've long been interested in, but it was difficult to imagine a way in which I could maintain a studio practice, run a gallery, and afford to do both. I was between studios in 2015 and spent the summer in Berlin. Part of that time was spent studying under the German artist Norbert Bisky, whose work I've admired for a long time.  We discussed a lot of things, including lamenting the difficulty of finding avenues to show and share work. He advised that I (or anyone!) should just "start my own thing;" so I've had this bee in my bonnet for a couple of years. Since January 2016 I've shared my Lytle Street studio space with another artist, and when he decided to move out I knew that this was my opportunity. The space is perfect - clean, bright, white, and with enough room to allow me to continue my studio practice and to exhibit others' work in a proper way.

As an artist, I know how difficult it can be to find arenas in which to show your work, and I am thrilled by the idea that I can provide that opportunity to other artists. Also, I've been fortunate to live in both London and Chicago, and have traveled the United States and Europe fairly extensively, so I feel like I have a broad range of art-related experiences and knowledge that I can rely on to help inform the direction of the gallery's platform.

"Baptism" by Adam Chuck, 4x7.35in, oil on mylar

"Baptism" by Adam Chuck, 4x7.35in, oil on mylar

How did you become aware of Adam Chuck's work?

"Hand Palm" by Adam Chuckn, 5.5x7in, oil on mylar

"Hand Palm" by Adam Chuckn, 5.5x7in, oil on mylar

Adam Chuck paints primarily images from social media; fittingly, we "met" quite randomly through Instagram a few years ago. Though we've never yet met in person, we have developed what I consider to be a real friendship, which speaks both to the power and possibilities of social media but also the power and purity of his work. When it became clear that Quappi Projects was really going to happen, I knew I wanted to inaugurate the gallery with a show of Adam's work and happily he said yes. I'm a fan (and a collector) of his work and am so excited to be able to share it with the Louisville art community and the city at large. At first glance, Adam's work might seem to border on the salacious, but I think it creeps up to that line and then walks back. Most of the work is tiny, phone-screen-sized, owing its existence to social media platforms such as Instagram. The work is intimate, sensual and extremely honest. Each work is an exposure, really; it is essentially about reaching out, about the deep desire to connect, and represents an attempt to know and be known. In an age of terror and big fears, Adam's work seems infused with knowledge of those fears, but speaks more to the fundamental needs and basic human fears of need: to be desired, to be loved, to be seen, to be considered.

Tell me about the term "quappi"? I know the Beckman story, but what does it mean to you?

I believe very much in the transformative power of art. I have experienced this enough times in my own life to understand and value its merit, and I firmly believe that the highest function of art is to allow human beings to know ourselves more deeply. My own work has been concerned with the emotional resonance of particular experiences and what Max Beckmann described as "the deepest feeling about the mystery of being." Quappi Projects' goal is to exhibit contemporary art reflecting the zeitgeist, and the zeitgeist is mighty strange. Perhaps all times are strange, but I don't think there's any arguing that we are living in very strange times.

"Bildnis Quappi" by Max Beckmann

"Bildnis Quappi" by Max Beckmann

We have more knowledge than at any time in human history, yet not only do we not seem comforted or buoyed by that knowledge, we have - or some of us have, I suppose - begun to openly reject knowledge, experience and even commonly agreed-upon facts. I find that very worrying. I think the experiences of 20th Century German artists like Max Beckmann (and others) are relevant to us today.  Beckmann didn't consider himself a political person, yet his entire life was thrown into upheaval because of politics. He considered political concerns to be secondary to the concerns of the spiritual or metaphysical. Although I am a political person (and have a BA in Political Science) I agree with him and certainly find most explicitly political work too narrowly focused. At the same time, I think the best art reflects the times in which it was created, so it must have some element of the political. Take Velazquez' "Las Meninas," for example - artistically, it is a masterpiece, but it also tells us so much about the Spanish Court and what was going on at the time. I find that balance fascinating, and hopefully we can show work that is interesting in the same way. Even if we fall just a little short of "Las Meninas," we'll be very successful!

I plan to alternate non-Louisville-based and Louisville-based artists have a great series of artists lined up: Baghdad, Iraq-born artist Vian Sora, who now lives and works in Louisville; Louisville native Whit Forrester, who lives in Chicago and just graduated with an MFA from Columbia College; wood artisan Michael James Moran, a central Kentucky native who now lives and works in the Hudson Valley; and photographer Ryan Tassi.

"Raven Wings" by Adam Chuck, 5.5x7.25in, oil on mylar

"Raven Wings" by Adam Chuck, 5.5x7.25in, oil on mylar

Beckmann credited Quappi with keeping him going, keeping him on task and inspired. I think we're living in times when we must keep going, be on task, and be inspired. It's very easy to want to give into the notion of being quiet and comfortable, but I think we must resist that. We must be open, communicate, and connect. I'm hoping the spirit of Quappi can help me do that.

Adam Chuck / Instant Gratification

August 18 – September 29
Opening: Friday, August 18 / 5:00-9:00pm

Quappi Projects
1520 B Lytle Street
Gallery open by appointment only
www.quappiprojects.com

"Portrait of Les" by Adam Chuckn, 3.25x4in, oil on mylar

"Portrait of Les" by Adam Chuckn, 3.25x4in, oil on mylar

Entire contents copyright © 2017 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved.

Are you interested in being on Artebella?  Click here  to learn more.

Are you interested in being on Artebella? Click here to learn more.

Painting

Vignette: Tom Cannady

"Scooch Over, Hon" by Tom Cannady, 48x60in, acrylic on canvas (2016), $3600  |  BUY NOW

"Scooch Over, Hon" by Tom Cannady, 48x60in, acrylic on canvas (2016), $3600  | BUY NOW

Tom Cannady describes his paintings as, “nostalgic representations of Americana,” and he has expressed that notion primarily through the use of mid-20th century automobiles, vacation images, and signs. Iconic images filled with the sunlight and faux innocence of Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello.

There were often people before, but they were typical – middle class Americans living the dream on a hard-earned vacation, but in newer work, Cannady introduces some of the same over-exaggerated quality that we find in the 1950’s cars: sleek, fins and detailing that call attention to themselves and remind us of a time when how a car looked mattered more than fuel efficiency, into human female figures. “They Went That Away” highlights the kind of emphatic sex symbol of the period, while “Scooch Over” completes the relationship between objectification of women and automobiles that has never left us, but which was in much greater bloom at this seminal moment.  

"OneTwoThree" by Tom Cannady, 24x36in, acrylic on canvas (2016), $1800  |  BUY NOW

"OneTwoThree" by Tom Cannady, 24x36in, acrylic on canvas (2016), $1800  | BUY NOW

Cannady creates paintings in what he describes as, “a pop impressionist style creating new perspectives or recreating unique moods from another time. I use vintage photographs acquired from multiple sources as reference points and inspiration. Many were originally printed in black & white, which gives me complete freedom to choose the pallet best suited to the composition. I lean to warm, bright hues with strong contrast.”

Cannady is currently showing works at Makers Crucible Showroom and Craft(s) Gallery & Mercantile in Louisville, Kentucky. In November 2016 he was selected as one of twenty artists representing the sixty participants in the LVA Open Studio Weekend in a group show of work at the University of Louisville, Hite Gallery.

Hometown: Louisville, Kentucky
Age: 59
Education: BS in Marketing and a minor in Art, Murray State University
Website: http://www.tjcannady.com

"They Went That Away" by Tom Cannady, 36x48in, acrylic on canvas (2016), $2400 |  BUY NOW

"They Went That Away" by Tom Cannady, 36x48in, acrylic on canvas (2016), $2400 | BUY NOW

"Launch Party" by Tom Cannady, 48x24in, acrylic on canvas (2016), $2400 |  BUY NOW

"Launch Party" by Tom Cannady, 48x24in, acrylic on canvas (2016), $2400 | BUY NOW

"Hurry Up, Fred!" by Tom Cannady, 48x36in, acrylic on canvas (2015) $2800 |  BUY NOW

"Hurry Up, Fred!" by Tom Cannady, 48x36in, acrylic on canvas (2015) $2800 | BUY NOW

Cannady's studio

Cannady's studio

Written by Keith Waits. Entire contents copyright © 2017 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved.

Are you interested in being on Artebella?    Click here    to learn more.

Are you interested in being on Artebella? Click here to learn more.

Fiber

Vignette: Vallorie Henderson


“Being part of the earth, its secrets are part of our fiber, our purpose, our memory, and our spirit.”  — Vallorie Henderson


"A Bigger Piece of the Pie" by Vallorie Henderson, 2x3ft, hand-dyed and felted Merino wool with silk organza, machine stitching, $675 |  BUY NOW

"A Bigger Piece of the Pie" by Vallorie Henderson, 2x3ft, hand-dyed and felted Merino wool with silk organza, machine stitching, $675 | BUY NOW

Because they are created by human hand, we are tempted to think that textiles are less connected to nature than some other mediums. Yet the work of Vallorie Henderson captures the tones and textures of the natural world with certainty. Her Appalachian heritage has always imbued her artist’s sensibility with a feeling for the land, but isn’t there something inherent in the fibers of the material, which are born of the fluid, organic quality of biology, that carries the earth with it through any process?

“My work will always have its origins in nature, if not by the inherent qualities within wool that allow it to felt, then perhaps by the preference for a particular line or form found only in the natural world. I enjoy creating landscapes with an abstract expressionist approach, hoping to represent the essence of the chosen vista through transparent layers of silk and wool, allowing a visual blending of complex colors when the viewer’s eyes see multiple hues through other hues.”

"Bottom Land" by Vallorie Henderson, 7x35in, hand-dyed and felted Merino wool with silk organza, machine stitching, $575 |  BUY NOW

"Bottom Land" by Vallorie Henderson, 7x35in, hand-dyed and felted Merino wool with silk organza, machine stitching, $575 | BUY NOW

“With my most recent body of work, Birds Eye View, I chose to focus on aerial views of the farmlands in southern Indiana, western Kentucky and some areas of southern and eastern Kentucky where I am from. At first glance, these works may appear to represent a fascination with geometric shapes, patterns and repetitive grids. Viewing the landscape from higher altitudes does not allow a full understanding of the ongoing process that give form to the land below or of how its appearance reflects human occupation and the day-to-day engagements involving people, land, material, and circumstances. Beyond its dramatic scenery, our landscape is remarkable for the cultural activities and ideas it represents.”

"Gray Day along the Pike" by Vallorie Henderson, 14.5x28in, hand-dyed and felted Merino wool with silk organza, machine stitching, $625 |  BUY NOW

"Gray Day along the Pike" by Vallorie Henderson, 14.5x28in, hand-dyed and felted Merino wool with silk organza, machine stitching, $625 | BUY NOW

“My Cherokee ancestors did not think it possible to own land, believing instead that we are born from Mother Earth. As an artist, I accept that we are made of this earth and in some manner, have always known the earth and its environs. Being part of the earth, its secrets are part of our fiber, our purpose, our memory, and our spirit. We are this place and all of its stories and events. Making connections between our experiences, their location and time is to be part of a greater whole while living in the present.“

Vallorie Henderson’s Bird’s Eye View series is currently featured in the Louisville Visual Art exhibit, Tessile Ora, along with work by Denise Furnish and Elmer Luciell Allen. It will be on display at Louisville’s Metro Hall through May 26, 2017.

Hometown: Somerset, Kentucky
Age: 59
Education: BA in Art, Berea College, Berea, KY; MFA in Fibers, Miami University, Oxford, OH
Website: http://www.valloriehendersontextiles.com

"Amber Waves of Grain" by Vallorie Henderson, 2x3ft, hand-dyed and felted Merino wool with silk organza, machine stitching, $675 |  BUY NOW

"Amber Waves of Grain" by Vallorie Henderson, 2x3ft, hand-dyed and felted Merino wool with silk organza, machine stitching, $675 | BUY NOW

"Woodland Vessel" by Vallorie Henderson

"Woodland Vessel" by Vallorie Henderson

Written by Keith Waits. Entire contents copyright © 2017 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved.

Are you interested in being on Artebella?    Click here    to learn more.

Are you interested in being on Artebella? Click here to learn more.

Painting, Drawing

Vignette: Jenny Shircliff

"Creekside" by Jenny Shircliff, 24x36in, oil on canvas (2017), $1500 |  BUY NOW

"Creekside" by Jenny Shircliff, 24x36in, oil on canvas (2017), $1500 | BUY NOW

Artists turn that introspective gaze towards themselves; it’s not at all unusual - most art reveals something of the person who creates it. Jenny Shircliff makes herself the subject as a way of investigating age and, by implication, mortality.

"Cavea" by Jenny Shircliff, 18x15in, pastels on paper (2016), $650 |    BUY NOW

"Cavea" by Jenny Shircliff, 18x15in, pastels on paper (2016), $650 | BUY NOW

Her earlier paintings were naturalistic renderings of the figure, but her new work is a departure, in which she dramatically abstracts human form nearly beyond recognition, and equates it with landscape forms.

“Our culture's idea of figurative beauty is predicated on youth, smooth skin, and rosy complexions,” observes Shircliff, “I am inverting that tenet and looking at my own aging flesh as a recording of my life, much in the same way that time is visually marked on the landscape. Thus, I have turned to viewing various parts of my own body as elements of land formations and use them as a derivation for abstract landscape. And I draw my color from nature itself. In a way, this new body of work could be described as ‘flesh-scapes’.”

What results from this focus are images of startling graphic impact. They appear to be abstract but are, in reality, intense, close-up views of the human form that embrace and reveal their humanity. The discovery of organic pattern and shape is so universal that we mistake them for images of other animals or natural rock formations. Through this highly candid, nearly forensic self-portrait series, Shircliff reminds us that we are a part of a larger natural world.

"Outcrop" by Jenny Shircliff, 20x24in, pastels on paper (2016), $950 |  BUY NOW

"Outcrop" by Jenny Shircliff, 20x24in, pastels on paper (2016), $950 | BUY NOW

Shircliff has returned to painting after a long period devoting herself to the studying and teaching art history. “One of the most important things I learned from that experience is that assumptions should be challenged, inverted, and viewed in a different light.”

Shircliff has taught previously at Kentucky College of Art + Design at Spalding University, KSAH, Bellarmine University, University of Louisville, IUS, JCTC, and Midway College.

Hometown: Louisville, Kentucky
Age: 62
Education: PhD in Art History, May 2014 University of Louisville, Louisville, KY; MA in Painting, 1994 University of Louisville, Louisville, KY; BFA in Drawing, 1976 Murray State University, Murray, K

"Cavern" by Jenny Shircliff, 31x36in, oil on canvas (2016), $3000 |  BUY NOW

"Cavern" by Jenny Shircliff, 31x36in, oil on canvas (2016), $3000 | BUY NOW

"Gorge" by Jenny Shircliff, 48x48in, oil on canvas (2016), $1500 |  BUY NOW

"Gorge" by Jenny Shircliff, 48x48in, oil on canvas (2016), $1500 | BUY NOW

"Cliffside" by Jenny Shircliff, 24x36in, oil on canvas (2016), $750|  BUY NOW

"Cliffside" by Jenny Shircliff, 24x36in, oil on canvas (2016), $750| BUY NOW

Written by Keith Waits. Entire contents copyright © 2016 Louisville Visual Art. All rights reserved.

Are you interested in being on Artebella?    Click here    to learn more.

Are you interested in being on Artebella? Click here to learn more.