university of louisville

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Open Studio Spotlight: Hite Institute Grows West in Portland

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On the outside, right now, it is a decidedly non-descript building. There is evidence of renovation, but no signage yet. Come closer to the building at 1606 Rowan Street though…press your face against the new glass windows and you will discover that the interior is much further along. Freshly painted drywall and track lights are visible and some random art paraphernalia is finding its way to these rooms.  

Helen Payne

Helen Payne

The University of Louisville Hite Art Institute’s Master of Fine Arts program is moving into the historic Portland neighborhood of Louisville a little early because this Saturday and Sunday is the annual Open Studio Weekend, and Curatorial Studies professor and Director of Galleries Chris Reitz has been determined to see this location included on this 5th year of touring artist’s studios. Open Studio Weekend is a co-production of Louisville Visual Art and the University of Louisville’s Hite Institute, a fundraiser for LVA’s Children’s Fine Art Classes and the Hite’s Mary Spencer Nay Scholarship.

The inclusion of the Hite MFA studios represents a dramatic expansion of Open Studio Weekend participants in the Portland neighborhood, which includes artists Victor Sweatt and Tara Remington in the LVA building at 1538 Lytle Street, just 2 blocks from Hite, John Brooks’ Quappi Projects space next door to LVA, Billie Bradford’s woodworking shop across Lytle Street from LVA, sculptor Bryan Holden on Main Street, and the Dolfinger Building on Montgomery Street, which will include painter Julia Davis and fiber artists Colleen and Maggie Clines.

Occupying a renovated warehouse constructed in the 1800s, the Fine Arts Department will offer studio space for MFA students and faculty focusing on ceramics, drawing, fiber, glass, painting, printmaking, sculpture, mixed media, book arts, and design. Faculty and MFA program artists who are listed as participants in the 2018 Open Studio Weekend are: 

Mitch Eckert – Photography                         James Grubola - Drawing
Scott Massey - Sculpture                              Tiffany Calvert – Painting
Ying Kit Chan – Mixed Media                      Moonhe Baik - Fiber
Barbara Hanger - Drawing                          Mary Carothers – Mixed Media
Zed Saeed – Photography                            Megan Bickel - Painting
Helen Payne – Drawing                                Reid Broadstreet – Mixed Media
Che Rhodes - Glass                                       Rachid Tagoulla – Photography
Monica Stewart – Mixed Media                   Lauren Bader - Sculpture
Shae Goodlet - Drawing                                Katherine Watts - Printmaking
Todd Burns – Ceramics                                KCJ Szwedzinski - Glass
Tammy Burke – Mixed Media                     Meena Khalili – Mixed Media         
Karen Weeks - Printmaking                                                                                               

                                                       

The building will also provide space for the Anthropology department’s Master’s program, with gallery space and outreach programs planned for the Portland neighborhood. Construction will continue for some time, but classes in the building are scheduled to begin in January 2019.   

Open Studio Weekend Directories are being sold at the following locations:

Moonhe Baik, 33"x168" 100% cotton thread, 100% linen thread threadwork

Moonhe Baik, 33"x168" 100% cotton thread, 100% linen thread threadwork

AA Clay Studio & Gallery - 2829 S 4th Street, Louisville, KY
AC Hotel Marriott - 727 E Market Street, Louisville, KY
Artist & Craftsman Supply - 1002 Barret Avenue, Louisville, KY
CRAFT{s} Gallery & Mercantile - 572 S 4th Street, Louisville, KY
Cressman Center for Visual Arts - 100 E Main Street, Louisville, KY
Kentucky Fine Art Gallery - 2400 Lime Kiln Lane, Louisville, KY
Kentucky Mudworks - 506 Baxter Avenue, Louisville, KY
Louisville Visitor Center - 301 S 4th Street, Louisville, KY
Louisville Visual Art - 1538 Lytle Street, Louisville, KY
Nitty Gritty - 996 Barret Avenue, Louisville, KY
Preston Arts Center - 3048 Bardstown Road, Louisville, KY
Revelry Boutique Gallery - 742 E Market St, Louisville, KY
Silica Ceramic Studio - 222 W 6th Street, Jeffersonville, IN 

Juried Exhibition Opening Reception and OSW Launch Party

November 2, 2018
6:00pm–8:00pm
The Cressman Center (100 E. Main St.)

Open Studio Weekend Self-guided Tours

November 3-4, 2018
Saturday and Sunday 12 noon–6pm

“35 THINGS THAT HAVE ONCE TOUCHED EACH OTHER STAY UNITED” by Megan Bickel, c-print. Digital Collage of artist materials: glitter, holographic film, excerpts from "too nice"

“35 THINGS THAT HAVE ONCE TOUCHED EACH OTHER STAY UNITED” by Megan Bickel, c-print. Digital Collage of artist materials: glitter, holographic film, excerpts from "too nice"


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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Drawing

Feature: James Grubola, Distinguished Teaching Artist

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After more than forty years teaching at a single institution, the question of legacy is a fair one to consider. First, in an age where upwardly mobile is a literal calling to never stay in one professional situation for very long, lest you be perceived as lacking ambition, that loyalty and dedication to one institution seems charmingly old-fashioned. Perhaps that mentality, commonplace in the corporate world, has yet to infect art professors, who are, after all, working artists who value the financial stability of an academic life.

For James Grubola, the most important metric is established by his students, so the crucial measure is in the achievements from thousands of people who earned their Bachelor’s degrees through the University of Louisville since 1975, when he joined the faculty. But the credentials and formal recognitions are certainly there:

2001 - “Red Apple Award” for excellence in teaching from the University of Louisville's Alumni Association.

2008 -  the “Trustee's Award”, one of the university's highest awards which each year recognizes one faculty member who has had the greatest positive impact on students at the University of Louisville.

2015 - College of Arts and Sciences Distinguished Faculty Award in Teaching.

But Grubola also served as Chair of the Department of Fine Arts and Director of the Hite Art Institute at U of L  for 16 years, and if to be a department head is to be a builder, under Grubola’s leadership, Hite saw the introduction of the Mary Spencer Nay Scholarship Endowment, the addition of a program in glass housed in the Cressman Center for Visual Arts - the university’s first, permanent, non-medical facility located in downtown Louisville, and the adoption of a selective admissions policy for the department. Not at all a bad record.

"The Liminal Series- Cycloid Arches" by James Grubola,  silver and goldpoint  22x30in, POR

"The Liminal Series- Cycloid Arches" by James Grubola,  silver and goldpoint  22x30in, POR

As a teacher, Grubola served as head of the drawing program, instructing courses on all levels of drawing from beginning through graduate, and anatomy was his specialty. As an artist, he has of late returned to the human form as subject. Working for many years with still life images devoid of the body (the Uranometria Series), and at times distinctly abstract in character (the Liminal Series), for his swan song exhibition as U of L faculty, he has returned to the body, including an ongoing series depicting dancers with the Louisville Ballet.

Early in their careers, Grubola and his wife, artist and curator Kay Grubola, were artists-in-residence at the Christopher Ballet in Michigan, and when he was a graduate student at Indiana University he drew during ballet classes, so the interest in dance figures is nothing new, yet it is interesting that an artist who favors silverpoint and goldpoint as mediums should be focused so intently on the kineticism of choreographed movement. His statement that, “a sense of order has always been an important part of my work,” suggests that Grubola seeks to work through the movement to connect with the tremendous discipline that underlies dance. His past work displays the kind of control required by the arduous silverpoint technique - the carefully crafted linear expression of the Liminal Series barely contains the visceral, sometimes dark emotional energy found in some of those images.

"The Thursday Sessions - 23 March 17 - VII" by James Grubola, graphite, POR

"The Thursday Sessions - 23 March 17 - VII" by James Grubola, graphite, POR

Clearly Grubola is embracing a similar dynamic in the dance studio, as he relates in the statement for the new exhibit: “For me this work is a means to build a vocabulary of gestures and marks that reflect a dancer’s body in motion rather than depicting any individual dancer or specific dance step. As the dancers go through a series of steps - first at the barre, and then moving to floor exercises - I draw, my hand seldom stopping, building lines, gestures and marks.“

The kineticism is there, formed in vigorous line around the barely detectable dancers in motion - think of the Tazmanian Devil cartoon character in full whirling dervish mode. The suggestion of animation seems entirely appropriate to the forceful way Grubola captures the grace and athleticism of dance with such immediacy. The artist has a deep and profound relationship to the world of ballet that is communicated with great clarity. It is a relationship he explicitly cites when referencing the more detailed and developed figure drawings in his statement:

“After the pose has been set, my figure drawings all begin the same. Working life-size (or slightly smaller to fit the full figure on the page) I begin by marking the limits of the body on the page with an empty hand. Just as a ballet dancer ‘marks’ steps in a combination through a series hand gestures to help make a muscle memory, I move over the page trying to visualize key landmarks and measuring distances with my hand creating a muscle memory between my hand and eye of figure before me and the graphic construction to come.”

"The Friday Sessions - The Gauze Shirt" by James Grubola, silverpoint, POR

"The Friday Sessions - The Gauze Shirt" by James Grubola, silverpoint, POR

In the finished drawings we see here, the figure is rendered in great representational detail, but the muted tonality that results from meticulous buildup of silverpoint allows an extreme sensitivity to the graphic perception of the nude body. The confrontational aspect of exposing the body is equally muted, putting the viewer at a slight remove, as if we perceive the body as object through a veneer of...civility doesn’t seem the correct word, but there is a condition of safety that would not be provided by a bolder medium, or the introduction of color as realistic as the presentation of the dimensional form. An image of a nude body tends to elicit an emotional reaction, but Grubola reinforces the intellectualism of his point-of-view, the academic distance of a teacher.

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James Grubola:
The Friday (and Thursday) Sessions
Figurative and Dance Drawings 2014 - 2017

January 19 - February 24, 2018

Opening Reception
Friday, January 19, 6:00 - 8:00 pm

Cressman Center for Visual Arts
Hite Art Institute | Department of Fine Arts
University of Louisville

Gallery Hours
Wednesday - Friday 11 - 6
Saturday 11 - 3

 

Scroll down for more images

"The Thursday Sessions - 19 January - VII" by James Grubola, graphite, POR

"The Thursday Sessions - 19 January - VII" by James Grubola, graphite, POR

"The Friday Sessions - The Gauze Shirt 1" by James Grubola, silverpoint, POR

"The Friday Sessions - The Gauze Shirt 1" by James Grubola, silverpoint, POR


Written by Keith Waits.
In addition to his work at the LVA, Keith is also the Managing Editor of a website, www.Arts-Louisville.com, which covers local visual arts, theatre, and music in Louisville.

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Photography

Vignette: Mitch Eckert


Art ,“born out of frustration,” — Mitch Eckert


Like many artists, Mitch Eckert works in several different veins. Here we examine some examples from his Translations series. Eckert explains that he has been exploring the genre of still life for 25 years, and in these images we see him emulating the lighting in Flemish paintings. At one point Eckert had sought to discard the project and placed the work prints in a recycle bin – a purging action more common than the lay person might assume, but familiar enough to working artists. Eckert explains the process in his own words:

“Still Life with Cherries and Blue Bowl” by Mitch Eckert, 30x49in, Archival Pigment Print (2006), $1200 |  BUY NOW

“Still Life with Cherries and Blue Bowl” by Mitch Eckert, 30x49in, Archival Pigment Print (2006), $1200 | BUY NOW

“Still Life with Two Nectarines” by Mitch Eckert, 38x26in, Archival Pigment Print (2006), $850 |  BUY NOW

“Still Life with Two Nectarines” by Mitch Eckert, 38x26in, Archival Pigment Print (2006), $850 | BUY NOW

“The Translations series was born out of frustration. I wanted to participate in a dialogue with the rich tradition of the Dutch masters of still life painting so I set out to learn compositional strategies of creating still lifes in that manner. I set up the floral arrangements (my wife made the bouquets from our garden flowers) and using natural light made probably 300 photographs of different still life. After printing them all on an inexpensive inkjet printer to pin them on my wall and contemplate, I came to the realization that perhaps they were too commercial, too pretty. As a student in the heyday of Postmodernism (1980's) I became anxious and nervous about making work that was too pretty. I didn't know how to talk about them. I didn't want to make commercial work.”

“Out of frustration I wadded up the prints and threw them into the recycle bin. After a couple weeks had gone by I was getting ready to set the crumpled photographs into the alley for the recycle to be picked up. I unraveled one of the balls of photographs and to my surprise there was an immediate visceral reaction of delight when my eyes looked at the creases, folds, and torn edges of the photographic paper. In an effort to preserve the image I scanned the crumpled still life with a flatbed scanner and then, using a large format printer, made enlargements on a wonderful printmaking paper that wonderfully complimented the aged wrinkles.”

“Still Life with June Bouquet, Cherries and Figs” by Mitch Eckert, 24x18in, Archival Pigment Print (2006), $450 |  BUY NOW

“Still Life with June Bouquet, Cherries and Figs” by Mitch Eckert, 24x18in, Archival Pigment Print (2006), $450 | BUY NOW

The results blur the lines of the medium by removing the slick surface and detail of photography and exchanging them for a distressed visual texture. Without intending to do it, Eckert brought his images even closer to the aged and brittle tactile reality of their inspiration.

Examples of this series can currently be seen in Altered Perceptions, an LVA Photo-Biennial Exhibit at Metro Hall, which runs through January 12, 2018. Some of the images we see here are featured in that show, which also includes work from C.J. Pressma and Jenny Zeller.

The artist currently lives in Louisville, Kentucky where he is an associate professor or art in the Hite Institute at the University of Louisville. His work can be found in permanent collections of 21c Museum, Butler Institute of American Art, Indianapolis Museum of Art, the Photographic Archives at the University of Louisville, and Swope Museum of Art.

Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
Education: BFA, Photography & Sculpture, Herron School of Art; MFA, Photography, Printmaking, Art History, Ohio University
Website: http://www.mitcheckert.com

“Still Life with Hydrangea (in blue)” by Mitch Eckert, 30x28in, Archival Pigment Print (2006), $750 |  BUY NOW

“Still Life with Hydrangea (in blue)” by Mitch Eckert, 30x28in, Archival Pigment Print (2006), $750 | BUY NOW

“Still Life with Lily and Figs” by Mitch Eckert, 24x18in, Archival Pigment Print (2006), $500 |  BUY NOW

“Still Life with Lily and Figs” by Mitch Eckert, 24x18in, Archival Pigment Print (2006), $500 | BUY NOW

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, Painting, Mixed Media

Vignette: Denise Furnish

"Gain/Loss (detail)" by Denise Furnish, 31x31in, yoyo quilt patch, archival ink on cotton, acrylic, $900 |  BUY NOW

"Gain/Loss (detail)" by Denise Furnish, 31x31in, yoyo quilt patch, archival ink on cotton, acrylic, $900 | BUY NOW


“I was asked, ‘What is a quilt?’ It is a question that, at first, seems obvious, but the answer goes much deeper than a hand-made bedcovering. The process of defining a quilt is the essence of my art. The quilt is a sign of women’s work. The making of a quilt implies a chain of signification through conception, use, deterioration, and, in my case, transformation.” — from Denise Furnish’s Artist Statement


"  Gold Star" by Denise Furnish,   77.5x76in, discarded lone star quilt, acrylic, $3200 |  BUY NOW

"Gold Star" by Denise Furnish, 77.5x76in, discarded lone star quilt, acrylic, $3200 | BUY NOW

In the history of Modern Art, or the still-being-written chronicle of Contemporary Art, the quilt can still seem like an outlier, despite several generations of fiber artists using it as the foundation of their work. Yet the very associations that might lie at the heart of perceived limitations – namely its functional role as comforting family heirloom, are also the source of the quilt’s unique power in communicating themes and ideas. Denise Furnish exploits these attributes but also subverts them by using discarded quilts as a vehicle for painting.

"Bed" by  Robert Rauschenberg  75.25x31.5x8in, oil and pencil on pillow, quilt, and sheet on wood supports (1955) © 2017 Robert Rauschenberg Foundation

"Bed" by Robert Rauschenberg 75.25x31.5x8in, oil and pencil on pillow, quilt, and sheet on wood supports (1955) © 2017 Robert Rauschenberg Foundation

“The quilt as a sign for bed interests me, yet I nearly always remove quilts from the bed and put them on the wall. For his collage, “Bed”, Robert Rauschenberg took a quilt from a bed and destroyed it to make art in 1955. The difference is that I am interested in taking already damaged quilts and transforming them into art. I later realized that seeing that work in the Museum of Modern Art in 1968 has influenced me.”

The inherent qualities of each quilt are crucial in the conceptual nature of Furnish’s approach, informing her thoughts and application of medium, but there is also a sense of rejuvenation emanating from the transformation of a tattered, worse-for-wear object becoming a wholly new creative action.  

“My work developed as a chain of signification beginning with the recognition of quilt as a sign of pre-feminist ‘women’s work.’ This work was created and executed with attention to design and purpose. It was used, washed, worn. Often, it was separated from its maker. It was found by me and painted–a sign not only of transformation, but also of post-feminist women’s achievement.”

Denise Furnish’s work is currently featured in the Louisville Visual Art exhibit, Tessile Ora, on display at Louisville’s Metro Hall through May 26, 2017.

Hometown: Louisville, Kentucky
Education: BA, University of Kentucky, 1972; Attended Louisville School of Art 1980-1981; BFA University of Louisville, 2008; MA University of Louisville, 2009
Website: http://www.denisefurnish.com

"Red Basketweave" by Denise Furnish, 56x37in, worn and discarded flower basket crib quilt, acrylic, $1200 |  BUY NOW

"Red Basketweave" by Denise Furnish, 56x37in, worn and discarded flower basket crib quilt, acrylic, $1200 | BUY NOW

"  Flower Garden Boogie Woogie" by Denise Furnish, 48x53in, worn and discarded flower basket crib quilt, acrylic,telephone wire, tablecloth, $1200 |  BUY NOW

"Flower Garden Boogie Woogie" by Denise Furnish, 48x53in, worn and discarded flower basket crib quilt, acrylic,telephone wire, tablecloth, $1200 | BUY NOW

"Lavender Log Cabin" by Denise Furnish, 40x28in, discarded log cabin crib quilt top, acrylic, $900|  BUY

"Lavender Log Cabin" by Denise Furnish, 40x28in, discarded log cabin crib quilt top, acrylic, $900| BUY

"FIreball" by Denise Furnish, 43x29in, discarded fireball crib quilt, acrylic, $1200|  BUY NOW

"FIreball" by Denise Furnish, 43x29in, discarded fireball crib quilt, acrylic, $1200| BUY NOW

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

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, Photography, Mixed Media, Digital

Vignette: Jacqlynn Hamilton


“Creating art evokes an emotional catharsis, and encourages emotional rejuvenation and transformation.” – Jacqlynn Hamilton


Hamilton in her studio.

Hamilton in her studio.

All art might be described to some degree as therapeutic; if an individual feels compelled to create, how could it not? The creative process always channels energy and reveals the character of the artist. Yet sometimes making art is an acutely self-aware journey of healing for both the artist, and the community that they reach. This is certainly the case for Jacqlynn Hamilton.

“I strive to incorporate the essence of aesthetic splendor visually, while displaying to the viewer what may be seen as slightly psychologically dark personal narrative. I cultivate eternal psychological images within my paintings in hopes to link the viewer to a personal introspection. By incorporating several levels of meaning, I hope can relate to work, yet still take away some notion of intrigue and ambiguity.”

“I also endeavor to include elements of womanhood conveyed in prescribed female gender roles, including being a daughter, sister, wife and mother. Symbols form most of the distinctive layers of psychological meaning. My intention is to try to incorporate symbolic meaning to as many objects within the piece, while maintaining an aesthetically pleasing visual whole; thus, allowing the piece to be appreciated on several different levels.“

"Angel" by Jacqlynn Hamilton, 8.5x11in, digitally manipulated photographic & mixed media (2017) $125 |  BUY NOW

"Angel" by Jacqlynn Hamilton, 8.5x11in, digitally manipulated photographic & mixed media (2017) $125 | BUY NOW

"White Rabbit (3 of 3)" by Jacqlynn Hamilton, 8.5x11in, blind embossing print (2016) $175 |  BUY NOW

"White Rabbit (3 of 3)" by Jacqlynn Hamilton, 8.5x11in, blind embossing print (2016) $175 | BUY NOW

Hamilton has spent several years working on a series titled, The Island of My Own Creation, which together forms a personal narrative depicting the realm of psychological disassociation. “Dissociation is a psychological coping mechanism to help minimize or tolerate conflict and stress in the outside world. The act of daydreaming is a mild form of dissociation, and the phenomena can even lead an individual to altered states of consciousness.”

In 2016, Hamilton was included in two exhibits at Kaviar Forge and Gallery, Kentucky Printmaking and Touched With Fire.

Hometown: Sarasota, Florida
Age: 38
Education: Fine Arts, Ringling College of Art, 2000; Fine Arts, JCTS (Louisville), 2012; Major in Fine Arts, University of Louisville’s Hite Institute
Website: http://jacq2di.wix.com/artist-painter

"Treva" by Jacqlynn Hamilton, 8.5x11in, digitally manipulated photographic image (2017) $125 |  BUY NOW

"Treva" by Jacqlynn Hamilton, 8.5x11in, digitally manipulated photographic image (2017) $125 | BUY NOW

"The White Rabbit" by Jacqlynn Hamilton, 48x48in, acrylic on panel board (2016) $875 |  BUY NOW

"The White Rabbit" by Jacqlynn Hamilton, 48x48in, acrylic on panel board (2016) $875 | BUY NOW

"Treva Blue" by Jacqlynn Hamilton, 8.5x11in, digitally manipulated photographic image (2017) $125 |  BUY NOW

"Treva Blue" by Jacqlynn Hamilton, 8.5x11in, digitally manipulated photographic image (2017) $125 | BUY NOW

"Her Brother" by Jacqlynn Hamilton, 11x17in, acrylic and mixed media (2016) $350 |  BUY NOW

"Her Brother" by Jacqlynn Hamilton, 11x17in, acrylic and mixed media (2016) $350 | BUY NOW