Becoming The Student, #1: Shalonda Farrow

Starting this month I will be periodically posting a new series of portraits, beginning with the one below. The title of this series, Becoming the Student, is based on my desire to be quieter and learn from others rather than be entirely bound up in my identity as an educator. In Becoming the Student, I hope to present thoughtful, dignified portraits and use the time while creating the works as an opportunity to learn from the people who sit for me. With each post I will include some observation, quote, or other tidbit of glory that the subject shared with me.

The one below was created in 3 hours or so at a portrait workshop I conducted at The Columbia Art League yesterday. Pictured is my friend (and fellow CAL instructor) Shalonda Farrow. I was struck by how often she used the word “love” (as in: “Thank you, love” or “Do you need any of this, love?”) during the session. In speaking to her friends, she’s always intentional about communicating care and awareness. Shalonda seemed like a perfect initial entry into the Becoming the Student series. Here’s to many more. And thanks to Shalonda and the ladies at CAL!

20131208-155201.jpgShalonda, 13 by 11 inches, pastel on paper. 2013.

Current Shows and News

It’s been a full summer so far… plenty to be excited about in spite of the 107 degree heat!

I’ve currently got work up at PS Gallery in Columbia, MO. It’s a solo show – titled Adding – in their secondary gallery space, the Hallery. It’ll be up through July 28th. The Reception for the exhibition takes place July 14th at 6:00pm and we’ll be around for that. Also, stop by on Artrageous Friday, July 20th. Artageous Fridays are always epic cultural events in Columbia. Below are a few images from the installation.

Already making sales!

I have a piece of work at First Street Gallery in NYC until July 14th. First Street is a quality stop if you’re out there!

I am in a show (exhibiting a collaboration with Marcus Miers) at the 930 Art Center that runs through August 12th, called Phoneography. Check it out if you’re in Louisville!

I’ve got a work – already sold! – up at the Columbia Art League Annual Member’s Summer Open Exhibition. It garnered a 2nd place ribbon even…

I was the juror for Figure It Out! at the Craft Studio Gallery on the campus of the University of Missouri which was up from June 14 through June 28. I was delighted to select some amazing work and have a piece of my own there as well. See some shots below.

A detail of Catherine Armbrust’s amazing “The Titillator”

Ryan Johnson’s Crisis (on the pedestal) and Morgan Hobbs’ Self Portrait – which won an Honorable Mention.

Detail of John Schneider’s Do These Stripes Make Me Look Fat? – Oil on panel.

Detail of Jane Jun’s Journey.

My own monotype print titled Extend on the back wall, and a front view of Armbrust’s The Titillator.

Detail of David Mazure‘s Habakkuk, a luminous ink and marker on translucent paper that won Best in Show.

Wow… quite a bit going on since the spring semester ended. I’m trying to get my studio really set up and am enjoying time with my wife and daughter. I’m teaching a summer session of painting at Mizzou, which is quite a lot of fun, and working on a few odds and ends here and there in our new place. I made some hanging polyhedral sculptures for the front porch, a first for me. But perhaps the most effervescent developments of the last few days are my first brews – both IPAs – a Chinook and a Double. I’m using Northern Brewer equipment.

Beer Room…

ACTIVE FERMENTATION!

 

 

 

Vacation = Work

This Thanksgiving Break my wife and I decided to stay at our home here in Columbia, MO rather than going to visit family for the holiday. There’s a lot going on for us, and for my work in particular. There’s no time to take a break.

I’ve got three significant shows coming up. The first is a wonderful show at the University of Mary Washington Ridderhof Martin Gallery in Fredericksburg, VA. The exhibition is titled SHADES OF GRAY: Drawings in Graphite and will run from January 21 – February 25, 2011. I’m particularly excited about this exhibition as Joann Moser, Senior Graphics Curator from the Smithsonian Museum of American Art, will be presenting a lecture and placing the work on view in context. Below is one of the four works of mine that will be included in the show.

Anthropology (Conceits of Knowledge #3), graphite on paper, 38 by 42 inches, 2008.

The next show I’m involved in is a solo show at the Barrington Center for the Arts at Gordon College just outside of Boston, MA. The show is titled Redeeming Tensions and will feature approximately 40 paintings, mezzotint prints, and drawings. It’s the largest show I’ve ever attempted. It will run from February 5 through March 19, 2011. Below are two of mezzotint plates I’ve been working this week. The finished works will be printed and appear in the show.

Lamentations Chapter 3 Verse 8, copper mezzotint plate, 2010.

Lamentations Chapter 3 Verse 14, copper mezzotint plate, 2010.

The final major show I’m involved in will be a two-person exhibition at the 930 Art Center in Louisville, KY with Tim Lowly, one of the most amazing representational painters working today. It is an extreme honor to be asked to show with him, and I am super excited about our show of tondos. I’ve got some work for this show underway but since it’s a while until the show opens I want to keep that under wraps – the run should be June 17 – July 31, 2011.

So, as you can see, I don’t have time to take vacations from the things I love, the things I’m passionate about… and I wouldn’t want to. Faith, family, art making, community, teaching; I life for and in and through these things. They may all seem like cliches to some people, but I’ve got a full life and a full plate. I love it and I am thankful for it.

Color Drawing, Spring 2010

A year ago I started teaching all levels of Color Drawing (Beginning, Intermediate, and Advanced) at the University of Missouri. While I really enjoy all of my classes, the Color Drawing sections have been particularly special to me.

So here’s just a review of some of the great work from this semester…

Danielle Moser, Beginning Color Drawing: Reflection Project Drawing, Oil Pastel, 24 by 18 inches.

Jillian Blanck, Beginning Color Drawing: Master Copy Drawing (after Dali’s The Hallucinogenic Toreador), Chalk Pastel, 30 by 22 inches.

Scott Fisher, Beginning Color Drawing: Master Copy Drawing (after Michelangelo’s Libyan Sibyl from the Sistine Chapel), Chalk Pastel, 30 by 22 inches.

Holly Meador, Intermediate Color Drawing: Head Planes Model Drawing, Chalk Pastel, 44 by 30 inches.

Holly Meador, Intermediate Color Drawing: Self Portrait as Flaming June (after Lord Frederic Leighton’s Flaming June), Chalk Pastel, 30 by 36 inches. (Unfortunately, this drawing was stolen from my flat files at the University – I’m actually pretty pissed off about it. How can we expect our students to be willing to put forth their best efforts when their peers don’t respect that work? Really unbelievable.)

Roxanne Kueser, Advanced Color Drawing: Courtney, Chalk Pastel, 24  by 18 inches.

Brittany Carney, Advanced Color Drawing: Neil (The Proper Posture), Chalk Pastel, 24  by 18 inches.

Marcus Miers, Advanced Color Drawing: Untitled Composition, Chalk Pastel, 60  by 45 inches.

I want to thank all of my Color Drawing students for making the class so enjoyable. I could have easily had 100 drawings to show from the production of my 24 students; I don’t mean any disrespect to those I’ve not displayed here. These works do show the overall quality and worth ethic I’ve seen throughout all of the students this semester. I’m so glad I got to work with them. Here’s to setting the bar high for next semester!

Beginning Painters, Spring 2010

I have a pretty good crew of beginning painters this semester at the University of Missouri. I’ve been teaching the course a little differently this year, jumping into making stretchers and stretching canvases, working directly with color from the start, and assigning many, many more preparatory works than I usually do. I’ve been showing them Diebenkorn, Tim Kennedy, Sangram Majumdar, Catherine Murphy, and Uglow. The students seem to be responding.

We’ve been talking a lot about the color and direction of light, focusing intensely on how value shifts over forms and through spaces. I’m enjoying a lot of what they’ve done. Here are a few of the current project (all are oil on canvas, each approximately 14 by 14 inches):

Sarah Burch

Arin Hennessey

Dannah Moore

Jesus Roman

Katie Westhusing

Alyssandra Wilkey

Craft Studio Gallery Show, Presenting Context

I’ve got an installation up at the Craft Studio Gallery of the University of Missouri in Columbia.

I proposed the show and brought in the additional artists and their works. See below for more shots of the installations and to read our group statement. Be sure to click on each artist’s name to see more of their excellent work.

The Reception will take place February 19 at 4pm. Hope you can make it. Check back here soon for some details from the installed contexts.

Work and Installation of Context by Nathan Sullivan.

Work and Installation of Context by Derek Frankhouser.

Work and Installation of Context by Sloane Snure Paullus.

Work and Installation of Context by Catherine Armbrust.

Work and Installation of Context by Marcus Miers.

Presenting Context Group Statement

Artworks are almost always presented to viewers far removed from the circumstances of their creation. The inspirations, research, sources, methods, and background information that form the basis for all artworks are usually unavailable to the audience. This amounts to a veil of mystery surrounding the finished work, masking and focusing it. Artworks appear to have simply sprung fully formed into the world, though we know this to be false. This exhibition proposes to change that – at least in some small way – by displaying singular artworks in tandem with the ephemera that lead to their creation. Alongside completed works, artists will show some background to the art: inspiring data, evocative objects, images historical and pop cultural, as well as the more traditional sketches showing trial and error. Taken together, these artifacts will serve to illuminate the experiences artists go through to process their ideas and actions into finalized pieces of art.

Exhibiting Artists

Visiting Assistant Professors Matthew Ballou and Nathan Sullivan
MU Graduate students Catherine Armbrust and Sloane Snure Paullus
MU Undergraduate students Derek Frankhouser and Marcus Miers

Heaven?

I’ve been obsessed with the sign shown above for months. As you can see from the image below, it’s located in an unused, locked lobby at a Landmark Bank location. Why would there be a neon HEAVEN sign at a bank? What does it mean? Is it art? Is it irony? Anyone out there have thoughts? Click on the pics for a clearer view…

Winter 2009 MU Honors Convocation

Me with one of my favorite art students, Shannon.

(Above: photo by Rob Bratney)

She earned honors for her work in Psychology at MU. She minored in Art, which is obviously where I worked with her.

Honor students often name a faculty person who walks with them in the procession to the ceremony where they receive their honors regalia. I was humbled when Shannon asked me to attend the festivities with her.

She is a dedicated, thoughtful, conscientious person. I’m looking forward to seeing the trajectory of her continued success as she looks toward Graduate School and combines her love for people with her love for art. Good job, Shannon!