Kaye Kelly is a Boston-based singer, composer and arranger. With three studio albums under her belt as well as a large catalogue of original music, she is most at home fidgeting with her love of words while playing the piano. Kaye is the founder and composer of SheGrooves, a female-forward band comprised of women from the Berklee College of Music.
In 2023, Kaye was a Massachusetts Cultural Council awardee for her project “SheGrooves” and was funded to explore songwriting for social change, specifically within the lens of gender equity. Kaye was also recently named a 2023 “Commonwealth Heroine” through the Commonwealth of Massachusetts for her work with arts advocacy and community activism.
Andrea “Ani” Johnson
Andrea “Ani” Johnson is an associate professor of Music Business/ Management at Berklee School of Music. She is an international lecturer and consultant in music licensing, marketing, and strategic startups.
Previously, she worked with Chris Blackwell at Palm Pictures/Rykodisc and licensed over 30 albums for artists including Elton John, Parliament-Funkadelic, and Fleetwood Mac. Her work with Gloria Estefan included restructuring financial systems and managing royalties for a Sony Music venture.
She serves as faculty support to the student team developing RAIDAR, Berklee’s music licensing platform, and also teaches the RAIDAR blockchain practicum. Built by students, for students, the platform hosts music from Berklee students, alumni and faculty, and allows them to license it for placement in films, ads, video games, and other media.
Ember (They/Them) is a mixed media textile artist, and teaches at NIAD Ember makes, curates, and supports art as a life practice. Ember’s current focus is on human relationships with other animals. The series, “The Hands of Death,” features dead or dying animals and human hands. Contrasting bright colored embroidery on dark fabric illustrates frank depictions of death. An interest in human relationships spills into all of Avalos’ curated spaces. It’s all right there waiting to be grabbed.
Ember has curated and been featured in various exhibitions such as "Hey, Give me a Call" at the Rock Paper Scissors Collective in Oakland and "Through My Eyes" at the NIAD Art Center in Richmond.
In addition to creating art, Ember has also facilitated textile workshops, led art committees, and curated art shows. Ember's art is an exploration of the complexities of human-animal relationships and works to create a space for reflection and conversation.
Emma Spertus lives in Berkeley, works in Richmond, and has a studio in Oakland. She is a teaching artist from one of our partnerships, NIAD. Her sculptures and architectural interventions are inspired by her varied encounters in the Bay Area. She is interested in highlighting the humor and visual intrigue of banal subjects, from business parks to technology lingo.
Emma has completed a diverse range of community-minded art projects, including co-founding Real Time & Space, which offers affordable artist studios to 17 artists in Oakland Ca. In 2018, she co-organized Channel Arts with the support of the Oakland Museum of CA. The community-based art workshops focused on enjoying public parks with the belief of art-making acting as an equalizer and a bringer of awareness of the space around us. She is an arts instigator, curator, performance artist, and has attended a number of residency programs both here in the US and abroad.
Ocean Escalanti is an indigenous visual artist and writer residing in Oakland, CA. Originally from Southern California she relocated to the bay to achieve her BFA Printmaking from the San Francisco Art Institute.
Ocean has recently exhibited work and developed a natural dye workshop for the group show ‘Tikkun: for the Cosmos, Community and Ourselves’ at the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco.
Ocean has also performed poetry and vended self published works at the Small Press Bazaar at SFMOMA and UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive.
Ocean is a facilitator at NIAD Art Center in Richmond, CA and monitors at Max's Garage Press in Berkeley, CA. NIAD is one of Chalk Hill Artist Residency’s Bay Area Partnerships.
Alexander Hernandez is a teaching artist from Creativity Explored, who specializes in outdoor interactive exhibits featuring textiles, soft sculpture, and video.
Growing up, Alexander found his safe space in crafting, where he could freely express his love of American pop culture and his Mexican upbringing.
In his physical practice, Alexander marries quilting techniques with digitally printed imagery while considering both color and pattern and their relationships with one another.
His work has been featured in various exhibitions and galleries worldwide, and he has received numerous grants and awards for his art.
Sara Lankutis's artistic practice includes painting, drawing, printmaking, and collage media. Sara has led educational and public programs for all ages at Kala Art Institute, Berkeley Art Museum, and the City of Stockton. She facilitates the printmaking program and offers public events and workshops at Creative Growth Art Center, a historic studio and gallery for artists with disabilities in Oakland, California.
Each creation of a work is a slow, unfolding process incorporating the traces of time and evidence of a larger collective experience of a place - scratches, footprints, tracks. She’s interested in how these environments can hold layers of mystery and collective familiarity simultaneously.
Amy Keefer is a visual teaching artist from one of our partnerships, Creative Growth. She works in textiles and knitwear. Hailed as "radical in its romance" her work is rooted in wearable art, simultaneously addressing textile practices and relational aesthetics. By making such art and wearing it, the female identifying body is at stake in the narrative. Clothing is an extension of the self.
Parul Naresh is a textile designer, mother, visual artist, art educator, and an advocate of sustainable practices. She derives inspiration from nature and highlights its beauty, honesty, and perseverance. Her drawings often use a wash of watercolor or India ink, and a range of renewable resources. As a fiber artist and a printmaker, she dyes and creates prints on handwoven fabrics using silkscreen, plant-based dyes, soy milk and earth pigments.
For more than a decade now, her volunteer work supports local Indian artisans to create slow textiles, with an aim of promoting craft and sustainability in the textile industry. The profits from the sales go back into the artisan community thus helping to sustain their livelihood while caring for planet Earth.
Her handcrafted Indian textiles can be found at Weaves and Wildflowers.
Sarah is a collaborative lithographer, writer, and maker in LA, originally from Australia.She is captivated by the alchemic expanse of lithography and loves things that seem impossible. Her printmaking studio is called Speck Editions.
Her collaborative printmaking means is that she works with artists who normally have an exclusive relationship with their medium of choice (painting, sculpture, music…) to explore the unique visual language of the print process. She sees profound wisdom in rocks, as with all things that have been living a long time. She uses the word living, for it is old Indigenous news that non-human entities such as trees, rocks and bodies of water carry forth an essential ancestral consciousness.
During her time at Warnecke Ranch, she collected natural materials including pigments. She has a particular interest in and attunement to color.
William Mark Sommer is a visual artist and educator working within the small town of Loomis, California. Through Sommer's work in analog photography, he has received a BFA in Art Photography from Arizona State University and traversed the United States developing a practice that engages in themes of human nature, preservation, empathy and time.
Growing up in a bypassed highway town of Loomis, Sommer’s life was shaped by small-town American culture. This culture along the Lincoln Highway gave him a deep admiration towards the overlooked and in-between places that were forgotten by the many. Through his many travels he has gained a closer understanding with complexities of America and has created perspective on time through his work.
Lorena was born and raised in Sonoma County, and will return here for a month to work with an alternative dark room process called gum bichromate.
She draws from her family history and tradition of gardening. She explores ancestral knowledge, self sustainability, and the indigenous peoples’ connection to the land. She reflects on and records their traditions through her prints and basket weaving.
She makes prints of gardens using sunlight. She is testing this process on petates, a flat woven mat made out of natural palm fibers. These petates will become a printing surface for the gum bichromate process which allows her to mix her own pigments into a light sensitive solution.
Her work has included her family’s experience as immigrants and first generation Americans.
Sarah is a writer and researcher at a social justice nonprofit. Her writing has appeared on KQED Public Media and in Literary Mama, Adoptive Families,
and the San Jose Mercury News.
She's writing a creative nonfiction manuscript looking at the stories of how three generations of mothers in her family have dealt with “unacceptable” differences in their daughters (epilepsy, queerness, and madness).
"Necessary Artifacts" uses the lens of motherhood to explore questions of belonging.
Through her artwork, Mary Jane shares her reverence and appreciation for the natural world. She works in portrait, figure, still life and landscape subjects.
Her drawing and painting style is influenced by painters in the Classical Realist and Realist movements as well as Art Nouveau, Renaissance,and Botanical artists.
She draws from her talents as a draftsman and dancer as well.
Working primarily from life, She is faced with the constant, even if subtle, changes of life. The drawing becomes a conglomeration or layering of many hours and days of a facial expression, a
gesture, a likeness - an attempt to make a record of the reality she experiences and observes moment to moment. She is energized by the challenge of capturing something that is not really possible to capture. She distills her observations, experience of a landscape, the weather,
the light on a form, and she does not seek to replicate.
Michelle Mansour is an artist, educator, and curator as well as the current Executive Director of Root Division, a visual arts non-profit in San Francisco.
"The focus of my work is the interior space of the mind and related ontological meditations. Through the lens of
perception, fluctuating between the miniscule and the grandiose, we find fear and wonder of the unknown, the
invisible, and the uncontrollable. Based initially on an investigation of the interior world of the body where beauty and illness mingle in the same fluids and membranes, my work has become a broader reflection on where the physical and the metaphysical intersect. Originally referencing microscopic imagery, the works push an imaginative space that exists beyond the threshold of the eye or lens. Forging a connection between the microcosmic and macrocosmic, the paintings explore tensions between the scientific and the spiritual, the corporeal and the ethereal."
Based in Victoria, Australia, Madeleine Joy Daws creates compelling and life-like drawings through a personal process of marketing making using symbols placed onto a grid.
"Utilizing a system whereby the ruled grid becomes the vessel for a lexicon of hand-drawn symbols, the principal theme in my work is employing iterative mark-making as a temporal site to record measured and psychological time. This emphasis on time and repetition informs my work in a way that allows me to mediate rather than mirror the world; an attempt to coordinate thought and stabilize the disorder of the everyday. Underpinned by the language, tactility, and intimacy of textile-based crafts, works that initially masquerade as digital prints are subverted from by subtle nuances and imperfections in mark-making."
. -Madeleine Joy Daws
Yulia Pinkusevich is a visual artist working primarily in drawing, painting and installation. She creates projects and large-scale environments that deal with ecological and social systems. Her installations directly engage the body of the viewer and address surrounding architectural spaces. Her work explores the psychology of spaces and human relationships to their environments.
Formally, Yulia’s work is engaged with the direct experience of the viewer through perspectival illusion and spatial perception that play with the cognitive understanding of space. By breaking logical perspectives she creates illusions of impossible spaces, non-places or Utopias that shift the viewpoint to the panoptic.
Her background itself is rooted in change. Born and raised in the USSR, her understanding of rules, social status and human abilities were redefined when moving to the United States. Learning to adapt and observe things carefully and move fluidly throughout her surroundings. She questions and studies our ecology in flux, attempting to tether seen and unseen forces acting upon our current narratives.
Jonathan Crow create images that combine symbols of American mid-century nostalgia with today's mood of anxiety and impending apocalypse.
I create oil paintings that recall the vibrancy and optimism of America during the Cold War, reframed to reflect the anxiety and uncertainty of this current era. I draw inspiration from vintage snapshots culled from the 1950s through to the 1980s and use them in a way that creates compositional tension between positive and negative space. I’m drawn to images that seem to be small parts of a larger narrative; images that raise more questions than they resolve. My paintings are fragments of mid-20th century suburban life where disaster seems to lurk just beyond the frame.
Charles Moxon is a portrait artist who is based in London and New York. Having graduated from BA (Hons) Painting at Camberwell College of Art in 2013, he has exhibited in Europe and North America.
Moxon's sitters have included Harriet Harman MP and Ex-England and Chelsea Football player Roy Bentley. He was selected for the Young Masters Art Prize in 2012 and the BP Portrait Award in 2016. He has exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery in London and a residency/solo exhibition at the Lux Art Institute in San Diego. He has appeared on the BBC and in publications both in Europe and USA. In 2018 he was shortlisted for the Royal Society of British Art Rome Scholarship and the Sunny Art Prize.
Contemporary dancer, vocalist, and actress Alli Ross is an assistant professor of theater at Boston Conservatory at Berklee. She and her colleague Amanda Friou were selected by the institution for a residency at Chalk Hill as part of a partnership program between CHAR and Berklee College of Music.
Alli has performed in works such as in Liz Lerman's Healing Wars (Arena Stage, 2013, and tour, 2013-2015), which was a three-year investigation with the company and veterans of our most recent wars. Other transformative work includes Lady Macduff in Sleep No More (original U.S. cast, American Repertory Theater, 2009; Emursive, New York City, 2011). Ross has recently launched Excavate, a collective dedicated to researching, making, and performing site work looking at the interconnection of topography and history of land as it meets somatic landscape.
A director, educator, and disabled multidisciplinary artist, Amanda is a theatre professor at Boston Conservatory at Berklee where she teaches acting, devising, and musical theatre performance in the MFA and BFA programs.
She and colleague Alli Ross were selected by the institution for a residency at Chalk Hill as part of a partnership between CHAR and Berklee College of Music.
In addition to directing, she designs and fabricates puppets and consults on projects attempting to straddle different theatrical worlds. On very rare occasions, you may also see her as a performer.
Amanda is a world builder at heart. Her early training in dance and music resulted in a belief that making theatre is more than making plays. Theatre is an umbrella term, that covers a collection of artistic tools that can be used to fashion performance in whatever form a story demands.
Amanda is a member of SDC and AFT, an alumna of Macalester College, The University of Washington School of Drama, The O'Neill Theatre Center National Puppetry Conference, and was a two time fellow of the Drama League Director's Project.
Patricia is a visual artist originally from Spain, currently based in San Francisco, CA. Her work focuses on colorful abstract geometrical structures and bold organic shapes creating spaces that are hypnotic and inviting. She creates these constructions as a way to organize her thoughts and recreate memories and feelings.
She has received her B.F.A. from the University Complutense, Madrid, Spain in 2009, and her MFA in Serigraphy and Lithography from CIEC Foundation, Galicia, Spain in 2010. She lives and works in San Francisco and collaborates as a Teaching Artist at Creativity Explored.
Through the constant migration between Santa Maria, CA and Leon, Guanajuato, Mexico, as a child, I struggled to maintain emotional stability... Home has always seemed far away from me. In Mexico, my home is the US, and in the US, Mexico is my home. Inculcated by my parents’ cultural values, catholicism, and traditions, have strongly impacted my art practice. In the Spring of 2017, I achieved the degree of MASTER OF FINE ART in Sculpture, at San Francisco State University, San Francisco, California.My practice is Interdisciplinary, including painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture, mixed media, installation, photography, audio and sound recordings, video, writing and performance. I approach medium and materials according to their formal and conceptual significance. Currently, it is crucial to me that the materials I select be ones that trigger memories of my past. The acts of making, cutting, twisting, tearing, wrapping, heating, burning, and/ or banging provide me with a sense of healing and acceptance: These labor intensive acts that could be associated with violence or even torture have allowed many of those brief past memories, which had faded away, to awaken.
Meadow Presley is a teaching artist with Creative Growth in Oakland, CA. She was selected by the organization to spend a week in residency at Chalk Hill as part of a partnership program.
Meadow's mixed media sculpture, collage, painting and installation combine themes of memory, collections and popular culture. Each piece hints at a nostalgic story of a magical place existing not quite in reality, a place where inanimate objects come to life. Her work is influenced by collections like that of the magpie, said to have a nest of shiny jewels and gold, images from dreams, and her vast collection of vintage toys and dolls.
Klea McKenna is a visual artist who also makes films and writes. Her work has been shown and published internationally. Her photograms are held in several public collections, including SFMOMA, LACMA, Getty Museum, Santa Barbara Museum of Art, the US Embassy collection, The Mead Museum of Art and The Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Klea is represented by Euqinom Gallery in San Francisco and Gitterman Gallery in New York. In addition to her own art practice, she was co-founder and photographer at IN THE MAKE an online arts journal that published studio visits and interviews with over 120 West Coast artists from 2011 to 2015. She is the daughter of renegade ethnobotanists, Kathleen Harrison and Terence McKenna. Klea lives in San Francisco with her partner and their young children.
"Places have a memory, a history, a feeling that we connect with. These memories, like faint echoes, are revealed as light moves across the landscape, transforming the color and texture of a place. It is these moments and experiences that I capture in my atmospheric landscape paintings".
"My recent work centers around sculptures and installations made from old piano parts. While making these objects originally, a story emerged of a fictional tribe known as the Pianistas. In the gallery setting, the objects function as artifacts from this lost culture, which used piano parts for all their material needs, creating everything from tools, ceremonial objects and masks, costumes and musical instruments, to large-scale structures and weapons, among other things, in much the same way native tribes from the Great Plains utilized the buffalo. The original purpose, symbolism and spiritual meaning of these objects, how they have been described by art historians and anthropologists both in the past and present, and what happened to these objects over the course of history are all part of the narrative, which continues to evolve."
Lindsey Cunica Walker
Lindsey Cuenca Walker is a Filipina American contemporary artist based in Portland, Oregon. She works primarily as a painter but also makes occasional though enthusiastic forays into other media such as printmaking, ceramics, wood, and textiles. Her works explore the ideas of solitude, community, and communion with nature by creating an emotional arrangement of forms that result into still lifes or landscapes. She approaches painting as an attempt at harmony between disparate parts.
She recevied her BFA from Pacific Northwest College of Art in 2017. Lindsey has been the recipient of numerous merti-based scholarships and awards, and has exhibited regionally in Oregon, California, and nationally in Philadelphia and New York City. She is originally from Southern California and has lived and worked in Portland, Oregon since 2013.
"I was born to a culture of gold adornments on bronze skin, hand-picked cotton lightly woven and layered into full-body wraps, dresses and shawls. Ornate textiles, mesmerizing embroidery, unforgettable spice blends and a ritual of coffee ceremonies like no other."
Often referencing her her African origins, Féven's work explores eclectic perspectives on language, culture and land. She engages with topics such as divinity, black femininity, political and cultural issues, and is continually striving to find challenges that bring new meaning and understanding to her craft. She lives in Santa Rosa, CA.
Maria Ylvisaker is a visual artist living in Brooklyn, New York. She works in drawing and printmaking to explore nostalgia and everyday life. Her work has been published by Womanly and Polyester magazines, and has been shown at Printed Matter’s NY Art Book Fair, David & Schweitzer Contemporary, and A.I.R. Gallery. In 2021 she was a resident at Open AIR in Missoula, Montana. She holds a B.A. in studio art and rhetoric & communications studies from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa.
"With each artwork, I begin by crafting a scene that conveys the internal world I’m experiencing or questioning. These imagined landscapes often include naturalistic elements, such as trees, flora, oceans, and mountains, existing alongside manufactured ones, often taking shapes of buildings or boats. Using a blade, I cut and extract pieces from paper.
What results is a papercut imbued with the imperfections that arise from a precise tool in imprecise human hands. I revel in the uniqueness of these variations and hope that they serve to personalize the work so that others may find their own imperfect, evolving, growing stories within it".
Sheng Lor is a Hmong-American artist based in San Francisco, CA, whose process-driven practice combines thread, natural dyes, and visual language to explore new narratives through cloth.
Her current project Dyeing Flora is an inquiry into the impact of the textile production on communities and the controversies surrounding it. While at Chalk Hill, she will be foraging for natural dyes to create a local fiber-based work which can be used to express the climate resiliency of certain sites based on their dyeing flora.
We highly encourage you to visit her website to view her beautiful weaving and textiles, and learn more about Sheng's inspiration.
Amanda Season Keeley
Amanda Season Keeley is a visual artist, curator, and writer. She received her MFA in sculpture from Parson’s School of Art & Design, and her most recent solo exhibitions in Miami include Fredric Snitzer Gallery and Wolfsonian--FIU Museum, with special commission projects featured at UNTITLED Art Fair, Vizcaya Museum & Gardens, and The Bass Museum of Art. In 2014, Keeley founded EXILE Books, an independent publishing house and store specializing in artist's books which recently settled in the Little Haiti neighborhood. She is also the Associate Curator for the Sackner Archive of Concrete & Visual Poetry. Keeley is the recipient of several grants and awards such as the South Florida Cultural Consortium Grant, the Knight Foundation Arts Challenge, Florida Department of State of Cultural Affairs Grant, and New York Foundation for the Art’s Blackburn Printmaking fellowship. Her work is included in numerous private and public collections.
Born in Northern California, I spent my childhood making little animals in my mom’s ceramic studio, playing for hours in the woods, and concentrating fully on imaginary characters I invented. Before painting, I was an editorial fashion and portrait photographer in NYC and London for 18 years, a rare woman in a very male-dominated field, working for the best mags. I was trying to capture the female figure and attitude in the form of a narrative. The story was usually fantastical and sometimes absurdist – a theme that I continue to explore in paint. The animals protect others in the artwork, like a charm or pact. They soften the strangeness that is allowed to creep into the juxtapositions. Their participation adds goodness and loveliness. Familiars; part of a person’s soul in animal form, but having their own agenda as well, undefined but potent. The prehistoric animals in some of my paintings seem recognizable yet odd-looking. They are extinct, so their beauty is lost forever.
Alexandra Watson is a co-founder and executive editor of Apogee Journal, a publication providing a platform for historically marginalized artists and writers. She’s the recipient of the 2019 PEN/Nora Magid Prize for Literary Magazine editing. She is a Lecturer in the First-Year Writing program at Barnard College, where she has received a Provost's Innovative Teaching Grant. Her fiction, poetry, and interviews have appeared or are forthcoming in The South Carolina Review, The Common, The Bennington Review, The Rumpus, Yes Poetry, Nat. Brut., Breadcrumbs, Redivider, PANK, Lit Hub, Apogee, and elsewhere. She is a 2021 poetry scholar at Tin House and Bread Loaf. She has received grants from the New York State Council on the Arts and the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council for community arts programming. She holds a BA from Brown University and an MFA from Columbia School of the Arts.
Born in the Bay Area, Monique Lazard received a BA from the California College of Art, and pursued graduate studies at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. After a successful career in fashion design and art direction, she left New York for Colorado, and began shifting her focus to painting. Monique now lives in Miami.
"What I try to achieve in my paintings is a sense of “aliveness” with brushwork and color. My aim is to paint the light and pieces of color that describes what I see. My experience with painting is impulsive and fluid rather than an organized plan of action. When I paint I am reacting to the excitement I feel when I see something that registers as beautiful to me. My focus is on the magic!"
Bill Zindel is an independent artist, illustrator, and designer who creates collages that are structured yet unrestrained, employing bold colors and patterns with geometric leanings and retro-futuristic tendencies. He draws inspiration from typography, signage, old records, and sacred geometry. His work as a designer informs his art formally, but his love of cutting, pasting, and collecting goes back to childhood. A graduate of Rhode Island School of Design, Bill lives in El Cerrito CA and works as a Studio Facilitator at NIAD. This residency is a part of our partnership with NIAD, which brings teaching artists from local nonprofits supporting artists with disabilities to spend a week at Chalk Hill to work on their artistic endeavors.
Jo Ann Biagini
Bay Area artist Jo Ann Biagini presents new works on paper that simultaneously embody whimsy and lushness. Inspired by books about nature as well as by the natural world itself, Biagini puts book pages into new environments layered with drawn and painted imagery. With shape, color and scale she conjures up new visions of the natural world. Born in Oakland, California, Jo Ann received an MFA in ceramics from the California College of the Arts in 1993. Jo Ann has shown her work regionally and nationally. She currently teaches at Creative Growth Art Center in Oakland CA. This residency is a part of our partnership with Creative Growth, which brings teaching artists from local nonprofits supporting artists with disabilities to spend a week at Chalk Hill to work on their artistic endeavors.
Lacey Johnson’s work is part manifesto, part pedagogy, and part girl gang. Using interdisciplinary art practices to explore her code of ethics, she began her work as the Video and Animation Instructor at Creativity Explored in 2019. Lacey is mostly concerned with telling triumphant tales of the feminine divine in non linear ways, and considers visual expression to be both her love language and a tool to inspire transformative cultural practices. Always a collaborator, she has been a part of multiple art and activism collectives and has presented her work locally in The National Queer Arts Festival, and at Artist Television Access, and SOMArts. She is from the Texas Gulf Coast and lives in Oakland, California. This residency is a part of our partnership with Creativity Explored, which brings teaching artists from local nonprofits supporting artists with disabilities to spend a week at Chalk Hill to work on their artistic endeavors.
Sonja Hinrichsen* examines urban and natural environments through exploration and research. As an artist she feels the responsibility to address subject matters our society tends to neglect or deny, particularly adverse impacts to the natural world. Her work manifests in immersive video installations, video performances and interventions in nature. Sonja graduated from the Academy of Art in Stuttgart, Germany in 1997/98, and received a Masters degree in New Genres from the San Francisco Art Institute in 2001.
*Due to changes in his scheduling, Will Clift will not be able to attend and instead, Sonja's residency was extended.
Bennett Ewing*, informally known as "Eyevan Tumbleweed”, is best known for his sculptural series of faces composed of found wood. He has spent the majority of his artistic focus creating an ongoing series of visages comprised from pieces of wood he collects from mountains, deserts, swamps, riverbanks, forests, and beaches. The wall-hanging relief faces in his series are pieced together meticulously and somewhat extemporaneously, using the natural colors, patterns and directions of various wood fragments to create countenances described as powerful, whimsical, even haunting. Bonded with glues and reinforced with two-part epoxy, the sylvan entities and their expressions of thought and emotion portray a glimpse of an otherworldly realm that is not altogether unfamiliar.
*Due to changes in her scheduling, Mary Jane Ward will not be able to attend and instead, Bennett was invited to attend Chalk Hill Artist Residency 2021.
Greg Crawford is a mixed media artist who lives and works in Oakland, CA. He is also a substitute teacher at Creative Growth- a community program we are proud to partner with! His amazing work examines American consumer culture through a process in which he transforms found materials into new narratives.
Experimentation is critical as I work with any material that adds towards a developing sense of finalizing projects. I appreciate vibrant and complimentary colors. A visual tension between color, tone, and material is a reason to sustain art making.
Working on large surfaces is a way of informing intimacy with the surface. Large and unrefined expressive marks work with a large canvas through the product of physical engagement. I paint formally on table cloths, bed sheets, and other non-traditional surfaces as a comment on industrial manufacturing and a societal intrigue around repurposing/recycling. I appreciate finding harmony in decorative material’s utility as aesthetic.
Filmmaker Shalini Kantayya’s, Coded Bias, premiered at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival to critical acclaim. She directed the season finale of the National Geographic television series Breakthrough, Executive Produced by Ron Howard, broadcast globally in June 2017. Her debut, Catching the Sun, premiered at the LA Film Festival and was named a NY Times Critics’ Pick. Catching the Sun released globally on Netflix on Earth Day 2016 with Executive Producer Leonardo DiCaprio, and was nominated for the Environmental Media Association Award for Best Documentary. Kantayya is a TED Fellow, a William J. Fulbright Scholar, and an Associate of the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.
Diane Wang is an artist and designer working at the forefront of innovation. She was born and raised in the Bay Area and is currently based in San Francisco. Through her paintings, she explores perception, creation, and the human condition in our rapidly evolving world. She studied Computer Science at UC Berkeley with a focus in Human-Computer Interaction, and currently works as a User Experience Design Lead on augmented reality. Her artistic practice explores psychological and societal unknowns that surface in her work in technological innovation, with optimistic visions for the future. Her work contains a harmonious coexistence of stark contrasts and drives intense and complex emotions through art and design.
Christie's works are layered, mixed media paintings that combine abstraction and realism. She works in layers with oil and acrylic paint, often incorporating original drawings and collage. This layering is a metaphor for the multifaceted dimensions of time, place, memory, and the everyday cultural stories that she's drawn to. Through utilizing veils of abstraction with the realistic subject matter, she seeks to evoke a sense of beauty, mystery, and emotional depth.
Amber Allen is a contemporary painter whose work combines her love of scientific theory, space travel, science fiction, and her Jewish heritage. Always on the lookout for fun yet thoughtful subjects, she favors bold colors, and explores the connections between our past and our future, with a current focus on space age themes as a metaphor for the progress of the human condition. Working primarily with oil paints, she uses a combination of palette knife and brushwork to give her work texture and interest.
"Born and raised in rural area of California, Deborah grew up surrounded by nature, but close enough to San Francisco to be influenced by the city’s history of social, musical and political upheaval. Her lyric-driven and soul-wise music draws on folk, rock, and Americana and is often compared to Lucinda Williams and The Cowboy Junkies. Venturing into everything from funk and reggae to rock and blues, her expansive and eclectic sound has evolved over her years studying writing and poetics at The Naropa Institute in Boulder, CO; voice and yoga in Mysore, India, and co-writing and collaborating with her Bay Area peers. ”
"Making art is a process that changes as the artist grows and changes. We are constantly bombarded with images, conflicting information, and ideas. In our current cultural moment, I want to stop in the maelstrom so that I may observe things closely in an attempt to answer the question of what matters most in life, what is it that is truly important. Right now, this truth is important to me." -Jennifer Fearon
"Animals are my primary subject mater. Animals utilized as stand-ins for people can say a lot about the human condition, but in a less individualistically identifiable way and I like this visual challenge as an artist. There are no human faces to distract from what my message is. That message is often narrative and personal. I can and often do, address environmental issues and endangered species within my artwork as a way to draw attention to the beauty and significance of these subjects. This duality of personal narrative and environmental consciousness is what interests me in my art making process." -Tara Tucker
Madelyn Covey is an Oakland/Emeryville based artist working in painting, drawing, video, and textiles. She received her MFA from Mills College in 2012 and currently works at Creative Growth Art Center. Covey's work deals with the relationship between people and media representation and how the production and prevalence of images affect culture. Cosplay, or costume play, is a motif throughout her work that explores how people are able to combat the commodification of heroes and reclaim the characters as representations of their own lived experiences.
"My artistic heritage is as American as Thomas Hart Benton and Charles Burchfield, their tumultuous landscapes a metaphor for a country in turmoil. My paintings often are based on photographs I’ve taken in the area where I live and also during my road trips across the United States and South America, but the photograph only starts the painting--then the back-and-forth between the mechanics of painting and my subconscious intentions take over, until there is a truce between the two---then the painting is finished. Sometimes I get ideas that won’t let me go, and I spend several days envisioning how to put them on a canvas. "
Anahid Aslanyan is an Armenian/American artist born in Iran. San Francisco is her home, She has been drawing since childhood. She lived and exhibited at the historical Goodman Building, an artists' community in San Francisco in the early eighties. Later she obtained a BFA from S.F. Art Institute in 1988. Her work has been shown and published since 1978. She has also exhibited Internationally in Armenia and the Czech Republic. Nature is the strongest inspiration for her work.This is art that comes from the spirit, exploring the dream universe of the soul.
Holly Friesen was born in Saskatchewan, studied Visual Arts at John Abbott College in Montreal and painting at York University in Toronto. Through many years of travel she discovered the portability of watercolors and honed her skills by painting on location. Settling in Mont-Tremblant, QC, Holly opened Artbeat Studio where she painted and taught for 20 years. While living and working in the Laurentians she painted from close observation of nature. She rediscovered the luscious physicality of oils and the textural versatility of acrylics. The scale of her paintings continually grew to accommodate the large movement she felt within herself and the earth around her. Her newest pieces are largely informed by internal metaphors and dream images she encounters when painting from inside the landscape.
Casey Gray is a contemporary artist working primarily as a painter, but occasionally in printmaking, design and site-specific murals. His work examines our collective entanglement with the dignity and reality of every day, and engages the symbolic potential of collected objects and personal ephemera to tell stories and inform identity. He often works in serial format, referencing historical painting tropes as a point of departure. His work is characterized by his commitment to aerosol paints and laborious hand-cut masking techniques, resulting in a type of skewed realism. Gray received his MFA in painting from the San Francisco Art Institute in 2010, and his BA in painting and printmaking from San Diego State University in 2006. He has exhibited extensively across the United States and abroad, and has been published widely both in print and online media. He has lived and worked in San Francisco, California since 2008.
Hersley Casero & Toulla Mavromati
Hersley Casero is a multidisciplinary visual artist based in Dumaguete City, Philippines. He received his BSC in Marketing and an Artist of the Year Award from Foundation University. Being born and raised in Dumaguete, the city has shaped Hersley’s perspective as a visual artist and is the stage for many of his paintings & photographs. His works have been recognized and published in local, national and international publications. Over the years, Casero has explored and experimented with a wide spectrum of materials, subjects, and concepts. He motivates others by collaborating on art projects like “Ha?: The Laughing Boy Project” and promoting the freedom of self-expression through art. Toulla Mavromati will be accompanying him as a documentary filmmaker.
Painter, Antoinette Wysocki was born in Washington DC. She later moved to California to earn her BFA from San Francisco Art Institute. Currently, she resides in New York where she continues her craft. Her works have been exhibited and sold all around the world. Including New York, London, Hong Kong, Dubai, and San Francisco. Wysocki was nominated by GLAAD as Top Emerging Artist in 2007. Her pieces are often multimedia in which she incorporates acrylic, ink, charcoal, pencil, gauche and watercolor. She describes her works as expressive and abstract.
"My painting has its roots in the fanatical ethos of a small school in the South of France which made Cezanne its figurehead and had a very black and white view of art history. L'ecole Marchutz was a great place to get rooted in a concrete perspective of the fundamentals and a format of painting from real life. Twenty years later, I still paint on location, finding myself in relation to a place and seeking unity with my surroundings. Only now I've exchanged the south of France for the open-air nut house that is San Francisco."
Marian Pham is an artist and illustrator based in Salt Lake City, Utah. She has studied at California College of the Arts, Academy of the Arts University, and studied abroad in South Korea at Hongik University. She earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Illustration in 2010, and is currently continuing her studies in all aspects of classical realistic art, creative writing, and comics.
Anne Faith Nicholls
Anne Faith Nicholls is an American contemporary artist based in California. Best recognized for her Neosurrealistic paintings, Nicholls has exhibited in collections, galleries, museums, and fairs around the world, and also contributed to a variety of high profile commercial projects with renowned collaborators. Often exploring the subconscious, her works are layered and mysterious, creating symbolic and alluring narratives on the human condition, with a unique perspective.
Brenda Zlamany is a multimedia artist from Brooklyn, NY. Since 1982 her work has appeared in numerous solo and group exhibitions in the United States, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East including the Museum of Contemporary Art, Taipei; the National Portrait Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Denver; Frankfurter Kunstverein, Germany; the National Museum, Gdansk, Poland; and the Museum voor Schone Kunsten, Ghent, Belgium. She has received portrait commissions from the World Bank, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, The New York Times Magazine, and other institutions. Grants that she has received include a Peter S. Reed Foundation grant, Fulbright Fellowship, a Pollock-Krasner Foundation grant, a New York Foundation for the Arts Artists’ Fellowship, and a Jerome Foundation Fellowship. Yale University recently commissioned her to create two large-scale group portraits, permanently installed on campus. She received a BA from Wesleyan University.
Painter, L.C. Armstrong, explains "my paintings are primarily about focusing on the good, and on the resilience of people and nature, and most importantly on finding magic in the everyday. The viewer is invited to recover the symbols that can enrich our increasingly virtual lives, and to embrace the beauty of reality."
Helen’s musical inspirations are wide-ranging: from Bach to Messiaen (a fellow synaesthete), Fats Waller to Keith Jarrett and Bill Evans, from Wayne Shorter to Astronomy, Shakti to Archaeology, and Nick Drake to total Native American respect – but most importantly of all – finding time to watch the flowers grow…
Kevin Bleau is a composer, arranger, musical theater writer, and performer based in Boston, where he teaches musical theater writing, composition, arranging, music technology, and harmony at Berklee College of Music.Kevin’s arrangements have been performed by Crystal Gayle, the Platters, Hollywood actor Wilford Brimley, Broadway divas Michele McConnell and Marni Raab, Miss New Hampshire, and many others. As Staff Arranger for the United States Air Force Band of Liberty, he arranged and transcribed more than one hundred popular songs; these arrangements have reached over five hundred thousand audience members since 1998.
"My work is about memory and family. Although I work from photographs, the paintings are not photorealism. The paint itself, with its restive and gestural surfaces, embodies the memory with which I see the past. And the past is my family, is sibling rivalry, marital conflicts, divorce and adversity and their effects." -Patrice Sullivan
"You are invited to pick up a mask from the floor. It might not be so easy. You move, and there’s a new face, waiting. What do these faces say? You must continue to scan. Is there one that speaks to you directly? Or more than one? Will you decide? I can help you. Are you represented? Are you left out? There are three hundred masks on the wall and three hundred more on the floor! I want to ask, where are you among these creatures? We began with a hole, now there is a chance." - Hamlet Mateo
Emily Carr has lived all over the world and is the author of several collections and chapbooks of poems. After she got an MFA in poetry from the University of North Carolina-Wilmington, she took a doctorate in ecopoetics at the University of Calgary. These days, she’s the program director of the low-residency MFA in creative writing at Oregon State University-Cascades.
Megan Roberts and Raymond Ghirardo
Megan and Raymond have been collaborators on video, sound sculpture, and performance works since the 1970s. Primarily working on large-scale installations that incorporate sculptural construction, sound, video and other elements. Their work has been widely exhibited both nationally and internationally. Awards include fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and New York Foundation for the Arts.
Julianne Jones is an artist living and working in Franklin County, MA. She received her Associates degree in Fine Arts in 2014, from Greenfield Community College. Julianne continued on to UMass Amherst to complete a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in Studio Arts in 2016. After graduating she remained in the area to work from her home studio and show locally. Jones has exhibited throughout the Berkshires, Hudson NY, and Brooklyn NY. Jones’s work delves into themes of female body image as well as racial inequality and social justice.
Mariel grew up between two countries, born in the United States, raised primarily in Mexico. As a border child and contemporary artist, she is interested in discussing the issues concerning life on the US-Mexican border and the ongoing search of identity that specifically happens in the region.
Based on mystical animal hybrids and elements of Mexican folklore and folk art, her work reflects this issue, seeking identity within modern fractured culture. These native creatures, or as she calls them “Tescuani”, are a break between the fantastic and the real while they inhabit an uncanny setting and space of liminality. The analogy of animal hybridity is a representation of Mariel's own background and lineage.
C.K.Itamura is an autodidactic interdisciplinary artist, designer, and producer. Her work blurs the lines between mediums as she combines tangible materials, sensory prompts, book arts, photography, language, time and space to create visual work, participatory projects, and conceptual installations.
Lea Walloschke is a multifaceted artist living in Berlin. She has worked as a fine artist, sculpturer, performer, director, author, graphic novelist, composer and singer. Lea has visually formed many theatre shows, dance shows, performances and films with her work as stage and costume designer. In every work, she looks for authenticity and tries to penetrate the chosen subject from all sides.
Gloria is a former art teacher who is looking forward to delving into the beautiful Sonoma countryside! Her work as a plein air painter is a snapshot of the environment, yielding bold, strikingly original content. She holds a BA from the University of Missouri, Columbia, MO, and is a lifelong resident of Kansas City. With exhibitions in various local and regional shows, she is currently represented by Gallery V, Leawood, KS.
Reuben is a Bay Area based artist. He holds a BFA from Savannah College of Art and Design. He also attended The Corcoran School of Art in Washington, D.C. During his stay Reuben plans to spend time doing fieldwork such as; sketching, photographing, and drawing of the natural environment throughout the Warnecke Ranch and Vineyard grounds. The other portion will be spent in the studio working with those photos and sketches to create paintings.
Kirsten Rae Simonsen
Kirsten Rae Simonsen received her MFA from the University of Chicago after studying traditional Balinese painting and drawing in Bali, Indonesia for a year at the Indonesian Institute of the Arts (ISI) and with a master painter in Sukawati, Batuan (I Made Bukel). She has shown her work nationally and internationally, with work shown at Root Division in San Francisco, Peter Miller Gallery in Chicago, Pterodactyl Philadelphia Gallery in Philadelphia, and The Residence Gallery in London, to name a few. Also, she has created site-specific drawing installations for the Zendai Museum of Modern Art in Shanghai, the Mills Gallery at the Boston Center for the Arts, and the Florida State University Museum of Fine Arts. Simonsen lives in Honolulu with her husband, dog, and bird, and she loves traveling the world for inspiration. You can see more of her work at: Instagram: @behomebeforedark.
Gilmor attended The School of The Art Institute of Chicago, Iowa State University and has an MA and MFA from the University of Iowa School of Art. She is professor emeritus at Mount Mercy University in Cedar Rapids.
Jane has exhibited her work internationally for 38 years. She began showing at A.I.R. in the late seventies and was a national member from 1986 -2006. Her work has been reviewed in journals such as The New York Times, The Chicago Tribune, and The New Art Examiner and is included in several books including Lucy Lippard’s, OVERLAY: Contemporary Art and the Art of Prehistory; and Broude and Gerrard’s The Power of Feminist Art: The American Movement of the 1970’s History and Impact, Abrams, 1993; and Pioneer Feminists: Women Who Changed America, 1963-1976, B. Love, University of Illinois Press, 2006. In 2009 she was a contributor to Cabinet magazine.
Genevieve Quick is a San Francisco based artist and arts writer. She received her MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute and has shown her work in galleries in the Bay Area. She has been awarded residencies at the Mills College, de Young Museum, MacDowell, Djerassi, and Yaddo. Quick has received a Center for Cultural Innovation, Investing in Artists grant and a Kala Fellowship. She has contributed writings to Shotgun Review, The Present Group, and Temporary Art Review. Quick regularly contributes to Art Practical.
Zygarewicz was born in Chile in 1965, grew up in Bolivia, and moved to San Francisco at the age of 15. She received her BA in Visual Arts from Loyola University, New Orleans and her MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute. Zygarewicz has exhibited across the US and has received numerous awards and critical recognition for both her sculptures and installations. She recently participated in “Southern Open 2011”, at AcA, “NOLA NOW Part I: Swagger for a Lost Magnificence”, at the CAC; “Women Work Wonders”, and “Brother, Can you Spare a Day “ at Staple Goods, “thread ~ el hilo de mis dias” AcA, Lafayette, LA.
A widely respected performer, composer, and educator, Vessela Stoyanova is a triple threat on the Boston music scene. Born and raised in Bulgaria, most of her original music is inspired by the folk music of the Balkans. Her compositions have been recorded by numerous ensembles and performed at major Boston-area venues
Enrique Gonzalez Müller
Enrique Gonzalez Müller started his career as a music producer and engineer at the Plant Studios working with artists like the Dave Matthews Band, Joe Satriani, Joan Baez, Les Claypool, and members of Metallica. In his home country of Venezuela, he's produced many chart-topping albums in for Caramelos de Cianuro, Viniloversus, and Desorden Publico, and in 2009, his collaboration with Los Amigos Invisibles won the band a Latin Grammy Award for their album Commercial.
Nate is a musician, writer, and educator. He curates the Lost Marbles Salon, an experimental monthly art and science gathering at Cloud Club a Boston art collective. While in residence Nate will focus on the development of a new course for Berklee College of Music that will draw from diverse scholarship, including: media and cultural studies that address celebrity identity, fan culture; psychodynamic explorations of human-computer interactions, and the nascent field of sound studies.