BY KEITH WAITS
I’m supposed to write about Ehren Reed, but remembering the old maxim, “A picture is worth a thousand words," I would begin with this photograph. Taken at an event celebrating the installation of murals painted by students from four different schools* and installed on the Alltrade Building on Barrett Avenue near East Broadway, it exemplifies so much of what made Ehren so valuable to Louisville Visual Art.
As an art educator, Ehren brought an invaluable mix of professionalism, dedication, creativity, and joy in her work that stands as an example to any individual steeping into that arena. Her enthusiasm never flagged in the face of the formidable challenges of limited budgets, tight schedule, and the reality that there was never enough time to do everything asked of her and Louisville Visual Art. Community partners who worked with her were always eager to return, and you would hard pressed to find a sour note from any of her collaborators, most especially her fellow staff members at LVA. She will be sorely missed.
So it is important to note that Ehren is moving on to new challenges, but still working within the Louisville arts community that she has been wholeheartedly committed to since she moved back from San Francisco in 2013. LVA is proud of her accomplishments on our behalf, and excited about what happens next.
(*Breckinridge-Franklin Elementary, Bloom Elementary, J. Graham Brown School, Jefferson County Traditional Middle School)
Ehren Reed grew up near Chicago and graduated with a BA in Latin American Studies from Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio. In late 2013, she moved to Louisville from San Francisco, where she had lived for 14 years and where she received a BFA with High Distinction in Painting & Drawing from the California College of the Arts. As LVA’s Outreach Programs Manager, she continued her work as a community-based art educator, working with youth in a variety of visual art programs. Ehren’s latest personal artwork relies upon found photography which she reinterprets and transforms through stitching and embroidery. This unique blend of traditional craft and contemporary media investigates ideas of memory in contemporary culture and seeks to develop a conversation between the ethereal world of technology and the hand-sewn physicality of craft. Her rigorous personal studio practice helps guide her throughout her journey as an arts educator.