E&H Art Department Student Exhibition 2023
March 20 th – April 15 th
Artalk March 27 th , Kennedy~Reedy Theatre
Visual art students at Emory & Henry display a rare creative and entrepreneurial spirit that starts with a unique hands-on approach to learning from our award-winning faculty. This expertise carries on long after graduation and into the professional world. Each individual explores a rich array of approaches toward creating while investing original ideas through painting, drawing, photography, collage, graphic design, printmaking, ceramics, sculpture, mixed media, and any number of combinations of art-making techniques.
We are proud to present their research at the McGlothlin Center for the Arts.
My work is focused around two topics – diverse storytelling and representation. Diverse storytelling is important to me as an artist because it provides a platform to share a range of narratives and shows that there is value in an array of experiences and perspectives. More specifically, storytelling focuses on circumstance, curiosity, characters, conversations, and conflicts. I want my show to embody these elements of storytelling through a diverse array of settings, characters, and conflicts, while presenting them in a format that would promote curiosity. I chose comic book covers because in this medium the cover art and layout are important in creating curiosity in the audience. Without a strong cover, it is unlikely a consumer would think to pick up a comic no matter the story being told inside.
The next topic my work focuses on is representation. When thinking about representation in my work I think there are three main ideas that are important. The first is that an individual can, if they try, connect to any character. More specifically, a character does not have to be an exact copy of an individual in terms of how you identify for you to connect to them. It is more the shared experiences that bind us. The second is that in modern media representation and in turn how you identify has become something that needs to be announced.But in reality a person’s sexuality, gender and race are more nuanced. One cannot know these specific things just by viewing someone’s presentation. This is present in my show through gender. I tried to present some characters as more neutral and in my feedback I have found many people see them as different genders. Lastly, I believe that the media needs to present characters and tell their stories without pigeonholing them according to their unique differences. This is why I tried to present a range of characters partaking in a range of experiences.
My work is meant to tell a range of stories and present an array of characters. My work exudes a sense of vibrant intrigue. Much like the media that inspires me it is unapologetic. I seek for my work to inspire others to create.
In my work I like to capture the emotions and essence of people and artists I admire and am inspired by. I listen to music most of the time while working and try to immortalize the feeling of the music in every work, and I have been drawn to these influences for a while now, even if I do not fully understand why. Furthermore, I work mainly with acrylic and oil paints on canvas and wood panel, and intaglio and aquatint printmaking. When it is appropriate, I also enjoy incorporating embroidery into my work, usually with beading.
Additionally, I am influenced by many queer and queer-supporting artists. I could only make art of people if I am sure that they love and support this community and everyone in it. Similarly, my artwork tends to gravitate towards figures of women. I love the strength of women and how they fight for their voices in a patriarchal society that tries to push them down and silence them. I do not necessarily feel like I, as a male identifying person, need to speak for the women that I paint, but I want to thank them for how they make me feel through their work, and their support for others.
Furthermore, color is one of the most prominent assets in my work and I try to make my color choices intentional and impactful. If one of my works is more solemn or more angry, peaceful or stressed, I want it to be perceivable in the color palette I have chosen. I never want somebody to be bored with what they see when they walk past one of my works. I want the colors to pull them in so they can see the details in the work up close.
There are many little memories that come to the forefront of one’s mind that are triggered by certain objects, smells, and even past events. Who would I be if I had not realized at the age of 10 sitting in my southern Baptist church that organized religion did not make sense to me? It seems to be a reminder every time I hear church bells, the smell of the air in the sanctuary, and the Sunday school class that shared gummies as a snack. For as long as I can remember I have loved researching the ideas of other religions and how the United States population sees it.
My relief prints are the production of years of wondering if there is a god. Could there be more than one? Why do we have to have one true religion in the world? Some people today do not fully respect the practices of others’ religions. Without the knowledge of these beliefs, the next generation but just the same. I choose relief print because in this medium can be molded to add my artistic style into it . Every piece in this collection utilizes gold leaf sheets; I chose this material because it gives the viewer something to decipher.
Through my research of these religions there is a creation of understanding of the lives of the people that follow them. My work is meant to tell a variety of stories with different points of view about multiple religions. The work that has been made is meant to inspire and bring forth an understanding of others and give hope to others to create.
Most of us are told that we should respect everyone’s opinion, so why can’t we respect that others may have different views than us?
The human experience is a topic that has always fascinated me, specifically the way we interact with each other, ourselves and technology. With the introduction of social media, there has been a cultural shift amongst human beings and the way we communicate with each other; especially given how media surrounds our daily lives. The long-term effects of media consumption is something that affects everyone who uses it, and my art brings awareness to this social problem. While the specific struggles vary from piece to piece, the common denominator is media, its purpose, and how it is used recreationally. My designs and illustrations explore sensitive subjects with bold graphics, an explosion of color, calligraphic lines, and shape.
I create my art with programs such as Procreate, Adobe Photoshop, and Adobe InDesign. My favorite traditional form of art to explore is paper collage, and I like to obtain my graphics from magazines and newspapers. My favorite element in my work is color because of its richness in symbolism, as well as how it interacts with viewers. Everyone sees color differently, yet we also see it similarly. The colors I’m drawn to in my work are meaningful to the subject within the work, but can also be up for interpretation, as color affects everyone differently.
I draw inspiration for my art from personal experiences as well as from peers. Although the generation before mine was the first to be exposed to social media and use it as the primary form of communicating, my generation has been gifted vices such as insecurity and mental health struggles on a silver platter, which can have life altering consequences.
I grew up admiring both printed comics and animated cartoons, longing for my work to be fully realized as a famous piece of media with rich storytelling, captivating designs, and heavy-hitting plotlines. Over the years, my art has developed into a darkly comedic, semi-realistic style, crafting anatomically plausible characters using digital mediums. I thoroughly enjoy bringing my imagination into the fringes of reality to interact in both fantastical and domestic situations.
One of the most noticeable parts of my characters is that they are unsettling, uncanny humanoid figures. These creatures navigate the pressures of conformity in different manners, representing the range of human experiences and individuality. Some have grown up and lost what makes them special, while others struggle to find their place in the world. How will they be allowed to feel human emotion while being viewed as something inhuman or evil? I ask myself this question every time I write about my art.
I am drawn, fervently, to seek understanding. My characters, beloved extensions of me, have been developed to tackle specific problems such as platonic relationships, navigating “embarrassing” personal interests, mental health and more. Each piece of art in this show partakes in the theme of overcoming problems as a group, aiming to conclude with the outcome of least pain. I know there will be sacrifices, and so do they. Reality and fantasy are richest when there are obstacles to overcome and a great, looming, impassable beast blocks their paths. May they work together and bring the truth to the surface regardless of who is left behind.
For most of my life, I have battled several mental illnesses. I have witnessed first-hand what others have faced and would like to spread more awareness of this topic through imagery. My work focuses on exploring deep meanings through psychology and bringing awareness to mental illnesses such as anxiety, depression and the process of recovery. I have always found interest in learning about how the mind works and what makes us who we are. This series was created through the combination of two of my favorite interests, art and psychology. Through my work, I am discovering and creating more ways to help bring more awareness to the severity and reality of mental illnesses.
My exhibition was created to help others better understand the lives of people who struggle with mental illnesses. Each design depicts one of nine mental illnesses or negative thoughts and emotions. There are six that cover seeking treatment and the process of recovery. With these designs, I hope to bring more awareness to the severity and reality of what people who battle with a mental illness face.
The primary medium I work with is digital design using the programs InDesign and Illustrator. In Illustrator, the imagery is created and then placed into InDesign with the already graphed out typography. To help make the typography and imagery harmonize, I design a specific background to match the meaning of the type and the energy of the image. Once the designs are complete, they are printed as archival pigment prints. Within this series, there are fifteen digital posters and an informational card for each poster. I chose this medium because it not only brings awareness to people who attend my show – the viewers are capable of spreading awareness through the distribution of the informational cards as well. For example, someone who visits my show can pick up one of the informational cards and spread more awareness outside of the show to a larger audience. This was the primary reason I chose digital design as the medium of my work. Digital design and typography are inspiring to work with and help me express my true emotions to a wide range of viewers.
Our bodies are wired to remember, we retain information long after something has come to pass. That’s why smelling hot sawdust takes me back to my father’s construction sites and the Saturdays we would spend checking on each one, why the scar on my forehead brings me back to thinking I was going to die from a superficial cut. Who would I be had not tromped through the woods with my cousins at age five, ruining our tennis shoes in the mud and catching salamanders? The dark depths that these memories emerge from is much like the ocean. With the full picture never truly there, I find myself remembering small details that were important to me at the time. The moment I recall something, it seems like one hundred other moments burst forth into my consciousness, like an overpacked sardine tin being opened.
Using collage, I can bring elements from all over and stitch them together into a cohesive idea. It doesn’t stop at scraps of paper and glue, as digital art programs help in adding depth, light, and shadow, ultimately creating something beyond the original pieces. I believe we aren’t just the products of situation, but the pieces and parts of things we stitch together to create one’s view of the world. Using fish, sardines, grants an anonymity to each memory to allow more focus on the emotion versus the person.
Reflecting on the good and bad of my childhood allows me to reconcile with my younger self and ultimately heal and understand why I am the way I am as an adult. Sometimes I wonder if I’ll always be that little kid, facing trials and tribulations over and over again, unsure of myself and the world. As I grow and allow myself to look back, I realize I can handle the hardships of life and that younger me was stronger than I could ever imagine.
Michael Ehlbeck: Life in the Sticks
Febraury 13 th – March 11 th
The Gallery will be open normal hours from March 6 th – 10 th during Spring break.
Artalk February 13 th , Kennedy~Reedy Theatre
I have always been attracted to the physical nature of making prints — carving linoleum, needling, etching, scraping, and burnishing both zinc and copper plate, as well as the process of inking and printing images. I have also continuously made drawings and three-dimensional images utilizing a variety of materials. My subject matter includes landscape, cityscape, objects and family.
The land and cityscapes document aspects of my travels that I found to be visually and personally interesting. Elements that stayed fresh in my memory were translated in such images as Saint Kolumba Catholic Church as seen from the Cologne Cathedral spire.
The physical objects — quite often natural elements like sticks, stones, water, and various collected trinkets — become a starting point. These images evolve without preconceived solutions or outcomes. This way of working is akin to a one-person exquisite corpse, so to speak.
Just as the landscapes, cityscapes and objects feature points of interest from my travels, the portraits revolve around my family. The recent images pay tribute to my departed mother and father as assemblages of fragmented memories.
Michael Ehlbeck, born in Dixon, Illinois, is a professor emeritus of East Carolina University, School of Art and Design, having taught printmaking, drawing, and design there for more than 40 years. He earned his BFA degree in painting from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, and his MFA degree in printmaking from the University of Florida, Gainesville.
While Ehlbeck works primarily in intaglio and relief processes, he has devoted serious studio time to making drawings and mixed media pieces. His large-scale etchings have been commissioned and hang in the Atlanta International Airport. Ehlbeck has spent time internationally teaching and leading workshops in Hong Kong, Germany, Italy and the United Arab Emirates.
During his career he has participated in more than 250 regional, national, and international exhibitions. Recent exhibitions include the “37th Bradley International Print and Drawing Exhibition” at Bradley University, Peoria, Illinois; the “Ambos Lados International Print Exchange” sponsored by Horned Toad Prints of El Paso, Texas and the Taller Grafica Libre of Zaachila, Oaxaca, Mexico; “The Print Effect: Small Works / Big Impact” at Manhattan Graphics Center, New York, New York; and the “55th Annual National Drawing and Small Sculpture Show”,at Del Mar College, Corpus Christi, Texas.
Steven Benson: The Aesthetics of Transformation
– Febrary 4
ARTALK JANAURY 16 TH , BLACK BOX THEATRE
Steven Benson: The Aesthetics of Transformation
– Febrary 4
Artalk Janaury 16 th , Black Box Theatre
These photographs are representative of a long-term project that reflects an ongoing interest in the idea of transformation. For the past six-years I’ve been creating images that explore the activities and artifacts associated with the process of transforming the landscape by an enormous infrastructure project. My goals are very different from anyone else working on the new I-4 highway running through Central Florida. Everything focused on has to do with physics – weight loads and distribution, gravity, traffic flow and water runoff. I’m looking at it from an aesthetic perspective, seemingly referencing the past, present and future, as the constructed environments can feel like ruins of a former civilization. I’m reminded of Margaret Bourke-White when she said industrial forms “were all the more beautiful because they were never designed to be beautiful. Industry…had evolved an unconscious beauty – often a hidden beauty that was waiting to be discovered.” The constructed environments I’m exploring function as ‘unintended’ site-specific sculptures or land art often presenting miraculous potential for photographic engagement. The process of making these photographs function as a collaborative activity with individuals I only know through the evidence of their actions.
Steven Benson is an associate professor and program manager at the Southeast Center for Photographic Studies at Daytona State College. Steven received his masters degree in fine art from Cranbrook Academy of Art. He is the recipient of three Creative Artist grants from the Michigan Council for the Arts and a NEA/ArtsMidwest Fellowship.
Collections include the Museum of Fine Art-Houston, Detroit Institute of Arts, the Portland Art Museum, Centre Georges Pompidou, and Museet for Fotokunst-Denmark. Feature articles about his work have appeared in European Photography (Germany), Katalog (Denmark), Creative Camera (England), American Photo, CameraArts, Urbanautica, PhotoMondo.dk and Cerise Press.
His solo exhibitions include the Centre Georges Pompidou, photography festivals and biennials and triennials in Argentina, South Korea, Germany, Syria, Poland, China, Denmark and FotoFest (2004 & 2008). His book, The Cost of Power in China: The Three Gorges Dam and the Yangtze River Valley, was published by Black Opal Press (2006) with essays by A.D. Coleman and Dai Qing. His work was the subject of a retrospective at the Southeast Museum of Photography during the 2012 exhibition, “Steven Benson: Space and Time-Forty Years in Photographs”.
Steven has specializations in editorial, annual report and advertising photography providing photographic services to publishers, advertising agencies, design firms and Fortune 500 companies. He has been sent on assignment throughout North America and Europe and to Mexico, the Caribbean, Russia, Brazil and Japan for clients such as AT&T, Ford, Chrysler, General Motors, Unisys, Borg-Warner, Allied Signal, Hughes JVC Technology Corporation and Canadian National Railroad, among others.
He has been an educator and fine art and commercial freelance photographer for more than 25 years. He is on the National Board of Directors of the Society for Photographic Education and the board of the American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP)-Central Florida.
Susan Fecho: When I Breathe on Air
October 24th – November 19th
Artalk October 24th
My recent work is inspired by the natural world - while also responding to the vernacular. On-site influences from botanical specimens, collected vintage items and histories provide ways to connect. Driving subject choices is historic iconography. “As I Breathe on Air” is an excerpt from a letter written by a young woman while traveling in 1910. Exploring the importance of storytelling, I want to image the surfaces placed in space – with increased negative space or forms that lift with layers to see around or through – to suggest memory, imagined sounds and emotions. This selection of mixed media works delight in intricate surfaces, forms and subtle hues to conceal deeper meanings.
Susan Fecho, a resident of historic Tarboro, has exhibited regionally, nationally and internationally - and has received numerous awards, grants and residencies. She shares that “storytelling is at the core of my work, with the collaged surface used as a mode of telling stories.” Fecho’s published images have been accepted into several major collections: the Smithsonian Institution’s American Art Museum/National Portrait Gallery Library, Washington, D.C.; the Word and Image Department, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, England; and the Museum of Women Artists, Washington, D.C.
CHAMPAGNE GOOLSBY SCRENKER WRIGHT VAN TASSELL
September 19 – October 15
Artalk September 19, 7:30PM, Kennedy~Reedy Theatre
Despite this subject matter I do not, and have never, considered myself to be a landscape photographer. What interests me foremost is the light, and only then the space upon which it falls. My current work explores the evolution, or rather devolution, of Boone Lake – now virtually dry since 2014, the marinas slowly becoming replaced by wooded areas as it transforms into a surreal landscape. The subject, however, is only a point of departure for visual exploration and expression and not a true documentary.
Charles W. Goolsby
I see the results of my work as a synthesis of memories, affective responses, logics, and
physical processes resulting in reflection and understanding. In essence, my paintings
are visual interpretations of complex intersections of experience and sensory stimuli.
Monotype combines the immediacy of painting with the graphic character of
printmaking. First, I paint my image onto a printmaking plate that has not been engraved
or etched. Once I finish the painted image, I transfer the image from the plate to paper
using an etching press. The resulting image is a one-of-a- kind print. This medium allows
me to experiment quickly with a variety of ideas. I explore etching plates as physical
objects with the intention of the printed images functioning as liminal ports.
Color and our response to color within our environment has been something we all take for granted. The research was slim at the time, and most essays on the history of color were written by centuries old philosophers such as Sir Isaac Newton, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, and Wilhelm Ostwald. These philosophers addressed color theory and mixing, but little addressed the physiological or psychological aspect of color. It wasn’t until Carl Jung that research
into archetypes and symbols opened the door to color as symbol.
The kitchen has been the hub of the household for centuries, it is the soul of the home. As social norms change, so does the kitchen. Focusing on the kitchen is a perfect glimpse into the social role of women as defined through the predominant colors available through the decades. In this series I would like to give an intuitive glimpse into the social constructs that defined the role of women, wife, mother, professional, and human based on the colors of the time.
Over the years photography has become much more than recording where I have
been. Conveying the impression that the scene leaves on my mind is my goal. In
my photographs, I strive to capture the atmosphere and ambiance that the
landscape evokes in me and hopefully pass that feeling on to the viewers.
This series is about capturing the surrounding landscape as it passes by during my
journey. In each of these images, I use blurred motion to capture scenes in my
camera that my eye doesn’t always register. Familiar objects are transformed by
the camera, clear outlines dissolve, and buildings become splashes of color; grass
and trees turn into brushstrokes. This technique helps to simplify the landscape
and the objects in it and creates an impression of a new landscape with new
colors, shapes, and textures.
My images are seen through the camera, they are not manipulated in the
darkroom or computer. Things are not planned, and decisions must be made in
an instant. Since I am not sure what the resulting image will be, I count on
random chances and surprises.
Dan Van Tassell
I am interested in creating pottery that could just as easily interact with the hand functionally as it can interact with the eye as a sculptural object. The pots that I create are full of breath and movement. The surface of each porcelain form is treated like a skin with luscious folds that beg to be touched. The soda-fired surface of these vessels is meant to accentuate each form in relation to another in the kiln. It also embellishes each surface as unique and one of a kind. I embrace the qualities of the fire as a brush to decorate my altered thrown surfaces with deposits of soda. Additionally, the fire adds layers of carbon trapping through the reduction cooling process during, and after soda induction. This creates diverse, rich and colorful surfaces over the oxides and flashing slip applied to each form.
As a sculptor, I am fascinated with how human beings interpret information, particularly when presented with a situation or idea that requires them to break their preconditioned notions of what the reality of an object or situation is. The ways which we interact with one another and the environment which we exist in is a curiosity to me. This curiosity is furthered in how each of these elements affects the other. These relationships exist in their most primal state through the notion that what we do affects where we exist, but where we exist can also affect what we do. The focus of my interest in this relationship lies in the “what if” which is unique to human perception. Through this psychology of connection, a narrative is formed in the work. By displaying works which have this implied narrative quality, I hope to create visual tension, as well as to speak to a particular metaphor unique to each individual work.
Joseph Champagne is currently the curator of the McGlothlin Center for the Arts as well as Adjunct Professor of Fine Art at Emory & Henry College. Prior to joining the faculty of Emory & Henry in 2015 teaching photography and web design, he was a Professor of Photography & Digital Imaging at Virginia Intermont College until the college closed in 2014, and was Chair of the Fine Arts Division there from 2009-2014, having joined the faculty in 1987 and started the institution’s Digital Imaging curriculum in 1989. In addition to teaching full-time, he served as director of the college’s Photography Gallery. He has served as S.E. Regional Vice-Chair and Chair of the Society for Photographic Education, and was appointed a Fellow of the Salzburg Global Seminar in 2004.
Charles W. Goolsby, Professor of Art at Emory & Henry College and Chair of the Division of Visual & Performing Arts, has been a practicing professional artist for more than forty years. He held the Allen & Agnes Rowlett Chair of Creative Studies from 2015-2018. He earned his B.F.A. in Art from Radford University in 1980 and the M.F.A. in Art from James Madison University in 1994. Goolsby’s work has been featured in more than 45 solo exhibitions throughout the southeastern United States at various college, university, fine arts center, museum and commercial galleries. Blue Spiral I Gallery, in Asheville, North Carolina represents him.
Catherine Schrenker, educated as a graphic designer, taught color theory and graphic design at Indiana University and The University of Notre Dame. Her research while at Notre Dame led to her work with color, emotions, and behavior and she became a distinguished pioneer in the integral role color plays in our emotions and behavior. This research led to Catherine being dubbed, “The Queen of Color” and she remains well respected in the medical, corporate, and educational communities throughout the United States and Europe. Internationally, Catherine has worked as a graphic designer in Den Haag, Netherlands and taught “The Philosophy of Color” at Warsaw University, Warsaw, Poland.
An established adjunct professor of art with more than 25 years of teaching experience at Emory & Henry College, Wright attended James Madison University where he discovered his passion for photography, achieving his B.S. in art with an emphasis in photography. He continued his studies at Virginia Commonwealth University where he achieved his M.F.A. in photography. Wright has exhibited photographs throughout the United States and his photographs have appeared in various regional and national travel magazines.
Wright is also a serial entrepreneur who has created numerous businesses since opening his first retail business in 1998. Wright’s business ventures include retail shops, restaurants, magazine publishing, graphic design, web design, advertising design, screen printing, and vacation lodgings.
Wright currently resides in Damascus, VA with his wife and daughter. Wright teaches digital art, beginning and advanced darkroom and digital photography.
Dan Van Tassell
A ceramics and mixed media sculptor who was born and raised in Janesville, Wisconsin, he received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in ceramics at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater in 2008, and his Masters of Fine Art in ceramics in 2012 at Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville. He was an artist in residence at the University of North Dakota in 2012. Upon completing the year long artist residency, he accepted a position in that department both as an Instructor, and as Preparator and Registrar of the University of North Dakota’s Art Collections. Dan joined the faculty at Emory & Henry College in the summer of 2015 as Curator, and also began teaching in the Visual Art Department at that time. Van Tassell served as art department chair from 2019 to 2022, and was recently promoted to Assistant Professor at Emory & Henry College. He has exhibited throughout the United States, recently winning “Best of Show” for his piece Projecting in the national juried exhibition Hybridity at the Edwardsville Art Center in Edwardsville, IL. His work has been published in the popular “500 Series” book 500 Ceramic Sculptures: Contemporary Practice, Singular Works. Currently, Dan, his wife Rachael, and daughter Lily reside in Glade Spring, Virginia. He remains an active studio artist, as well as a fanatically avid fisherman, fly tyer, outdoor enthusiast, and fish keeper.
Cheryl Goldsleger: Paradox
Feb. 14 - March. 12; Artalk Feb. 14, 7:30 p.m. via Zoom
Cheryl Goldsleger’s paintings, drawings and three-dimensional works are an exploration into the inescapable relationship individuals and societies have with place and location, and the myriad forces at work upon the landscape and its inhabitants. She offers her viewers unique vantage points from which they might understand these visible and invisible forces at play, suggesting that these are mutually dependent yet in constant states of flux - complex and ever-shifting.
My paintings, drawings and three-dimensional works are an exploration into the inescapable relationship individuals and societies have with place and location. When envisioning various sites, I imagine the myriad forces at work upon the landscape and its inhabitants. As socio-economic events and natural phenomena unfold, viewers are offered unique vantage points from which to understand the visible and invisible forces at play. Although the networks of relationships may not always be apparent, linear, or distinct, links exist, and connections and possibilities can be inferred. Visualizing webs of connections between positive and negative, animate and inanimate, natural and synthetic, and tranquil and turbulent, I visually suggest that these are mutually dependent yet in constant states of flux - complex and ever-shifting.
In these works, perception merges with proprioception - an awareness of our body in space - with attention to movements and changes in an evolving landscape. They are not static. Proprioception and unusual perspectives are particularly important, generating tension while fostering empathy when they coalesce. By immersing viewers in these situations, one can imagine how others feel in these conditions.
In planning my compositions, I weave together fragments that I have gathered from research, reading, travel and more, with how I react to that information and how I imagine it impacts others. My paintings develop in layers, accruing marks that, at different stages, must be selectively removed to reveal the foundation of lines and forms created in their earlier stages of development. The initial composition becomes submerged during this process as brushstrokes and color are added atop the original framework. Many more layers, additions, subtractions and revisions eventually allow the final image to emerge. In many ways, the process is a metaphor for the content.
Meteorologist Edward Lorenz stated, “When a butterfly flutters its wings in one part of the world, it can eventually cause a hurricane in another.” In my work, I strive to immerse the viewer in these places and in so doing, address these interrelationships and create an understanding of their chaotic ramifications in our increasingly smaller, interconnected global society.
Cheryl Goldsleger’s artworks in her exhibition, Paradox, continue her exploration of the relationships individuals and societies have with place and location. When envisioning various compositions, Goldsleger imagines the myriad forces at work upon a site and its inhabitants. Viewers are offered unique perspectives and are encouraged to immerse themselves in order to understand the webs of visible and invisible connections affecting our interconnected, global society.
Cheryl Goldsleger received her BFA from Philadelphia College of Art (now The University of the Arts) and her MFA from Washington University with additional study at Tyler School of Art’s program in Rome, Italy. She has an extensive exhibition record both nationally and abroad, including the European Cultural Centre’s 2019 Venice Art Biennale (Italy), The National Academy of Sciences (DC), the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters (NY), The Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia (GA), the Krannert Museum (IL), the Montclair Art Museum (NJ), the North Carolina Museum of Art (NC), The Institute of Contemporary Art (PA), the Israel Museum (Israel), and the High Museum (GA).
Goldsleger is a 2020 recipient of a Porter Fleming Foundation Artist Grant and previously received two senior Artists Fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts as well as other regional and state artist’s grants. Her work has been discussed in an extensive list of publications including Art in America, Artforum, The Hudson Review, The New York Observer, Burnaway, and ArtNet Magazine. Her international residencies at the La Napoule Foundation, France, a US/France Exchange Fellowship in Paris, and artist residencies in Italy have provided invaluable resources for her work.
Her artwork is represented in important museum collections including the Albright-Knox Gallery (NY); the Brooklyn Museum (NY); The Fogg Museum at Harvard University; the Greenville County Museum (SC); the Herbert F. Johnson Museum at Cornell University (NY); the High Museum (GA); The Israel Museum (Israel); the Museum of Modern Art, (NY); the New Orleans Museum (LA); the North Carolina Museum of Art (NC); the Tel Aviv Museum (Israel); and Yale University Art Gallery (CT); among other important public and private collections. Goldsleger’s public project Crossroads is a permanent mosaic tile floor installation in Terminal A of the Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in Atlanta, Georgia.
View the Artalk: February 14, 2022
Hedwig Broukaert: Peel (America)
Jan. 9 - Feb. 5; Artalk Feb. 2, 7:30 p.m. via Zoom
View the Artalk: February 2, 2022
Working with mass media imagery, Hedwig Brouckaert’s art refers to its distorted messages of desire and identity, totally transforming the original narrative. In doing this she reflects on mortality and the vanity of life in the hyper-consumer world of today.
As a teenager, I fantasized about painting all billboards black - and hijacking commercial images. Working with mass media imagery, my work refers to its distorted messages of desire and identity, but totally transforms the original narrative.
I am interested in the tension between the highly representational starting point, and the illegible and condensed result of my layering process. Using drawing, digital printing, collage, and installation, I create abstract and tactile work out of what once was commercial, banal material. As a memento mori, I reflect on mortality and the vanity of life in the hyper-consumer world of today.
‘Peel - America’ is a recent series of work of collage on commercial ceramic and marble tiles. From mainstream magazines like Vogue, with its over-produced images of whiteness that mask the inequalities in our society, I cut out models’ skin and layer it over and over with glue and acrylic paint to create a bas relief on tiles. I sand, cut, and carve with sharp tools to reveal the deeper layers beneath. The skins peel, uncovering strange patterns and melting boundaries.
Hedwig Brouckaert grew up in Flanders, Belgium, and has been living in NYC since 2011. She received an MFA from the University of California, Davis after completing a Masters in sculpture at the Sint-Lukas Hogeschool in Brussels, and a Postgraduate at the Higher Institute for Fine Arts in Belgium. Brouckaert received numerous grants from the Flemish Government in Belgium, and fellowships of the NYFA Immigrant Artist Mentoring Program, the Rockefeller Foundation – Bellagio (IT), Liguria Study Center Bogliasco (IT), Cité Internationale des Arts Paris, Hafnarborg Museum of Iceland, Yaddo (NY), Anderson Ranch (CO), Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and FLACC (BE). Her work has appeared in numerous exhibitions throughout the US and internationally, including ‘Re/pro/ducing Complexity’ curated by Peter Lodermeyer with work by Jorinde Voigt and Nelleke Beltjens at the Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens (BE), Städtische Galerie Villa Zanders (DE), Bangkok Art and Culture Center (TH), VOLTA NY with Jan Dhaese Gallery (2014 & 2018), Kentler International Drawing Space (NY), Kunstraum (NY), Project:ARTspace (NY), ChaShaMa (NY), Murray State University (KY), and Pallazo Vendramin Costa (Venice IT). Brouckaert’s work has been discussed in magazines and papers such as the Brooklyn Rail, the New York Times, Blackbook, ArtSpiel, Uncovered, the ArtCouch, and KunstHart (BE).
Greg Banks: An Explanation of Sympathetic Magic
November 1 - November 24
From the surrealistic imagery of The Precautionary Tale of The Goatman to the palpable memories of After The Family Farm, Greg Banks’ images weave a tapestry of family, folklore and the subconscious. Family photos combine a personal narrative with the folkloric history of the Appalachian Mountains of Eastern Kentucky.
God, witches, devils, mythical creatures, speaking in tongues, snake and fire handling, and raising the dead all exist in the Appalachian Mountains of Eastern Kentucky. For this body of work, I am appropriating family photographs, as well as vernacular images, to tell supernatural stories about my family history and the region from which I come. My work weaves together a personal narrative with the folkloric history of that area. Photoshop and the unpredictability of smart phone applications are used in a similar way to how a folktale unfolds. Each app is manipulating the story as a person might exaggerate a tale when they pass it along. By assembling family photographs and appropriating historical images, I am constructing stories with contemporary tools for manipulation and passing them along as visual folklore.
Greg Banks is a photo-based artist and instructor at Appalachian State University. He received his MFA in photography from East Carolina University in May 2017. He received a B.A. in photography and a B.A. in fine art from Virginia Intermont College in 1998. Banks was a top 200 finalist in Photo Lucida’s Critical Mass in 2018. He was one of only seven artists chosen for the Light Factory’s Annuale 9 in 2017. Banks’ work was among the top 5 most popular on the online magazine “Don’t Take Pictures” in 2017. His work can be found in publications such as Jill Enfield’s Guide to Photographic Alternative Processes, 2nd edition. Greg combines iPhone images and historic 19th century processes, gelatin silver printing, painting and digital printing. His current creative practice investigates family, folklore, memories, magic and Appalachia, as well as history and religion.
Charles W. Goolsby: Familiar Territory September 27 - October 23
I am transformed by my surroundings. My paintings are initially designed from an exploration of the environment in which I live. Partly informed by traditions of 19th-century American landscape painting, abstract expressionism, and neo-expressionism, my process transforms the landscape that inspires me into images that become intense psychological dramas.
The process for my work involves going out on location and making sketches and photographs. I use these source materials to develop my final compositions into the paintings. I am interested in paint as a physical material, which leads me to approach canvases with a gestural and liberal handling of the medium. Physicality and richness are two characteristics of oil paint and I wish to exploit them to their fullest extent.
I contrast geometric and the organic elements with activated brushwork in my paintings to develop a sense of tension and anxiety. Gestural brush marks colliding with trees and dappled reflected lights contrasting against aggressively sweeping concrete are examples of this basic organic-geometric opposition that is embodied in my work. In addition, I am fascinated with issues of space and the dynamics it has to offer in terms of illusionary depth within the picture plane. I am continuously searching for a personal, convincing and restricted color palette that is effective in delivering an emotional punch.
The selections I make are chosen because of a subconscious affinity I have to the subjects and forms that interest me. The themes that dominate my work are speed, confrontation, crossing borders, transitions, compression, isolation, reflection, fear, and collision. Mystery, monumentality, and ambiguity are key components of my work.
— Charles W. Goolsby
Richard Whitten: Grand Illusions August 23 - September 18
Richard Whitten’s paintings are meant to be games– games to be played in the imagination. He invites the viewer to interact with the painting by visually exploring the image and “touching” the objects depicted in it, challenging them to decipher the “rules” to propel the objects into “motion”.
The paintings, ranging from palm-sized to mural-sized shaped panels, fall into two categories: those that depict invented toys or machines in imagined classical architecture and those that act as game-boards themselves.
While the painting surfaces are flat, the viewer’s eyes persistently say otherwise, thus questioning their perception of reality.
Matt Wilt: Plans and Contingencies February 15 - March 13
An artist who draws inspiration from ancient vessels and other historical ceramics is featured currently in the McGlothlin Center Art Gallery at Emory & Henry College,
Matt Wilt’s exhibition, Plans and Contingencies, also is inspired by the “flotsam and jetsam of contemporary culture,” according to the artist.
While Wilt’s work in this exhibition is less vessel-oriented, those historical works continue to feed his ideas, which is demonstrated through forms that suggest a specific function or use, albeit a hybrid of the known world with a less concrete reality.
This newer work also draws from a catalog of forms that are suggestive in nature. “In Philip Rawson’s book, Ceramics, he refers to memory traces, and the power of forms to evoke thoughts and memories,” said Wilt. “This is similar to the way we associate colors with emotional states or meanings. By incorporating forms that are symbolic and suggestive, I attempt to engage the viewer in a process of decoding.”
Most recently, Wilt has become intrigued by art that synthesizes the human body with the mechanical forms of the manmade world, connecting threads that link elements of history, culture and what it is to be human.
These forms, as manufactured objects replicating natural functions, act as substitutes for nature. “I find this composite of the physical body and the synthetic world simultaneously fascinating and frightening,” Wilt said. “Through this line of inquiry, I am conscious of the connecting threads that link the many disparate elements of history, culture, and what it is to be human.”
Wilt holds a master of fine arts degree from Ohio University in Athens. He has been the recipient of numerous grants and awards, including two Pennsylvania Council on the Arts grants, an Illinois Arts Council fellowship, and the Evelyn Shapiro Foundation fellowship.
His artwork can be found in the collections of the Crocker Museum of Art in Sacramento, the DeYoung Museum in San Francisco, Arizona State University’s Ceramic Research Center, the Hand Art Center of Stetson University, the Kennedy Museum of American Art, and numerous private collections.
View the Artalk: February 15, 2021