EVOKE at Imago Gallery and Cultural Center

I’ve had the great pleasure to curate a little exhibition currently on view at Imago Gallery and Cultural Center, a space that I’ve been consulting for and have really enjoyed working with over the last year and a half or so. On Tuesday, September 1st, the gallery will host a reception for the show.


I hope you can join us for this event. The works I’ve selected were created by a few young artists that really highlight the diversity of perspective that is present in our community. All three of these individuals were or are students at the University of Missouri where I have taught since 2007.


Detail of a work by Sumire Taniai.


Detail of a painting by Kelsey Westhoff.


Detail of a drawing by Simon Tatum.

I chose these artists not only for the ways their work stirs up interesting moods and thoughts, but also because they represent the different places, directions, and sources that artists use. Taniai is Japanese-American, a strong woman who uses her paintings and drawing to delve into the complex relationships between fathers and daughters. Tatum uses his Cayman Island heritage to explore how colonialism and sublimated history may be brought to the surface in singular, distinctive ways. Westhoff’s paintings deploy the aesthetics of apps and filters familiar to anyone who uses a smartphone, and in them she treads the line between affectation and sincerity. All in all these young artists show the vigor of painting and drawing in the 21st century, providing viewers with avenues that illuminate history, identity, relationships, and meaning.


Every Brushstroke An Opportunity to Help Change a Life

il_570xN.276209062Situation and Circumstance Overcome, Oil on Panel, 16 by 20 inches. 2003.

Eleven years ago I created this painting. Over the years many people have asked me to create copies of it for them. There are more than 15 versions of this piece scattered across the US. Now you have an opportunity to get one of your own AND help support the adoption process for two of my good friends, Aarik and Brooke Danielsen.

il_570xN.276129237Detail of Situation and Circumstance Overcome.

The original piece is one of the most important artworks I’ve created. Its quality of construction, unique place in the story of my art making, and the personal significance it holds cause me to value it highly. For $400 you can have your very own version of this painting. I will donate every cent of the sale price to the Danielsens’ adoption fund.

I am taking up to 10 orders and I will deliver the finished works by July 2015. If you want to have a beautiful, evocative work of art for your home and help give a child a home they deserve, please consider ordering one here. I love the Danielsens and am excited to give anything I can to their adoption journey. If you follow my blog, you know how close adoption is to my heart. I hope you’ll give me a lot of work to do; every brushstroke will be done with love and joy, and in the knowledge that each one is making a real difference to a real person.

To find out more about the Danielsens’ adoption and learn more about how you can help, check out their blog here.

If you have questions let me know.

il_570xN.276209106Detail of Situation and Circumstance Overcome.

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE SAMPLE IMAGES ABOVE ARE EXAMPLES OF THE ORIGINAL PAINTING. Copies that I create will have variation, but will maintain the overall composition, color, and general surface structure of the original, and will be created exactly to the scale of the original.

Chromatic Totality

I’ve got another amazing group of Color Drawing 1 students this semester. Below I’ll highlight just a few of the many who’ve distinguished themselves this year. Please click on each to see them up close.

A work in colored pencil by Marissa Valentino. About 18 by 18 inches.

A drawing by Lirong Gong. Chalk pastel, 24 by 18 inches.

Megan Schaffer has an amazing sense of material handling. Her oil pastel work here is 30 inches by 22 inches – it’s just one of 4 or 5 that are really stellar.

Carly Kurka working the chromatic shadows, 18 by 24 inches, oil pastel.


Becca Wholey’s grid work fulfilled the project parameters expertly – 16 by 16 inches, colored pencil.

It’s been a privilege to work with these students – here’s hoping they continue on with me in Color Drawing 2!

Inspiration – Hanneline Røgeberg

Hanneline Røgeberg is a great Norwegian-born painter who teaches at Rutgers. I’ve admired her work for many years, cited it in my graduate thesis for Indiana University, and poured over it in writings and classroom discussions.

Alloy, oil on canvas, 48 x 49 inches.

She really is quite a treasure. I appreciate her serious commitment to painting as a form, her philosophical engagement with that form, and her deep willingness to pursue material and application over the image as such. Below are some links that can introduce her work and words to you:

Form and Story: Narrative in Recent Painting discussion at MW Capacity (guest post text by yours truly)

Hanneline Røgeberg talk at Boston University (this talk is fantastic and I encourage you to watch it a number of times – so full!)

Her personal website

Balzac I, oil on canvas, 24 x 20 inches

Check her out, and seek out more for yourself!