About the Work and the Artist
Keri King is a cross-disciplinary artist, based in Providence, RI. She received her BFA in Illustration with a Concentration in Creative Writing from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2005. Upon graduation, Keri founded an experimental theater arts project. A joyfully irreverent feathers and sequins donning dance troop, the Danger! Danger! Birds performed musical vignettes and comedic skits that harkened back to turn of the century traditions of vaudeville and burlesque. Today, Keri’s visual art and writing reflect her love of art and entertainment history and are sprinkled with clues about her own personal history.
In addition to her creative practice, Keri is a dedicated educator and an active member of her arts community. Keri currently teaches art to students at the Wolf School, a K-8 private special education school located in East Providence, RI. She has also taught performing arts workshops on the subjects of vaudeville entertainment and the “Roaring Twenties” to students ages 8-14, through teaching artist programs such as I Was There at Vartan Gregorian Elementary School and Open Enrollment at Providence City Arts for Youth. Her professional service includes work with the Institute for Contemporary Art in Boston, the Rhode Island State Council for the Arts, the Providence Children’s Film Festival and the RISD Museum.
THE CULT OF PERSONALITY:
DIA DE LOS MUERTOS & SACRED HEART painting series
October 5 – November 6 by Jennifer Gillooly Cahoon
in the 1st and 2nd floor Lobby Gallery and URI Library/Providence Art Windows.
Gallery Night Reception with a special Day Of The Dead musical costumed procession at . The musical program continues throughout the eventing.
Jennifer Gillooly Cahoon is a prolific painter, sculptor and widely recognized Artist Educator whose work is exhibited regionally and nationally and is part of numerous private collections. She has recently taken on the role of full time artist after working in public education for 19 years. She lives and works in the Providence Rhode Island area, obtaining her art degrees at Rhode Island College in Sculpture and Education and supplemented her studies in both England and Italy in the 1990s. It was only as of 2011 that she transitioned into painting as her primary medium, working in both acrylics and water miscible oil paints. She is a self-taught painter.
In a recent review, art critic Don Wilkinson described Cahoon as “a high priestess” who creates paintings “which are expressionistic with an eye for detail (and an eye for the eyes, the “gateway to the soul”) (and) have controlled dripping and running of the paint, unapologetic brushstrokes and collage elements…”
Several series of recent works have been focused on well known personalities who have died but are remain alive if not deified in cultural consciousness. These sometimes haunting but also inspiring portraits presented in Dia De Los Muertos (Day Of the Dead) and Sacred Heart Portrait Series seem to be reaching from beyond to touch our lives as the influence of their work continues to speak about life and living. Cahoon says, “I was raised in the Catholic Church and Parochial School”and she seems comfortable letting the spirit of these individuals speak to and through her in these striking paintings that on the one hand bear a common core, yet are as unique as the individuals they portray.
"How come you bother with my heart at all? You raise me up in grace, then you put me in a place ... where I must fall."
— Leonard Cohen
They include actors, musicians, scientists, political/religious leaders, and visual artists. Working in acrylic and water mixable oil paints, she depicts cultural figures with a consecration reminiscent of old Catholic Church tradition, deploying sacred hearts, holy objects and colors that shimmer about heads like haloes.
Some of those depicted are still alive, such as Led Zeppelin lead singer Robert Plant, astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson (cleverly immersed in a Van Gogh starry, starry night) and actor Tim Curry of “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” fame. It is apropos that the painting of Curry is — unlike any other portrait in the exhibition — not named for him but for his best known role. In “Frank-N-Furter’s Sacred Heart,” Curry is the campy “sweet transvestite from Transsexual, Transylvania,” complete with a Dracula-inspired high curved collar, an overabundance of makeup, and a skull-headed dagger piercing his blood red heart. Curry as hermaphrodite trickster god/goddess works.
Most of the paintings, which are expressionistic with an eye for detail (and an eye for the eyes, the “gateway to the soul”) have controlled dripping and running of the paint, unapologetic brushstrokes and collage elements, including fragments of wrapping paper, stylized cursive writing and fragments of pages from a dictionary.
The depictions include the late Robin Williams, smiling but gray, literally and figuratively, and the martial artist and actor Bruce Lee (who some still believe is hiding in seclusion somewhere and others believe was killed for revealing secret ancient Asian fighting techniques to the West).
Prominent members of The 27 Club (a seemingly ever-growing group of musicians that died at the age of 27) are represented. They include Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Kurt Cobain and relatively new member Amy Winehouse. Joplin is in the nude save for purple beads and trinkets, her hands crossed in front of herself. Her sacred heart is topped with a symbolic torch and is emblazoned by a single eye (a recurrent element) and three teardrops.
Marilyn Monroe is depicted, as one might expect, as the misunderstood sex goddess. The painting is compelling, all pink and blonde, lusty and vulnerable, smiling but on the verge of tears. Her sacred heart is ringed by barbs, like thorns of the stem of a rose, appropriately enough.The rest of the pantheon includes Salvador Dali, as surreal as ever; Pablo Picasso, an old man but reassigned to his Blue Period; a beatific Mahatma Gandhi, and Brigid, a Celtic goddess, who given the company, seems oddly out of place.
A transformative expression of life’s journey
NEW LIFE Exhibit, the Ten-31 Puppets & Dance Company will come alive
June 13 4- for Providence International Arts Festival (PIAF) at 80 Washington Street
Work is up June 1-30, with Gallery night Reception June 18 in the Lobby Gallery
About the Work
The “New Life” exhibit is a series of 30 x acrylic on canvas uniquely designed butterflies presented in a full spectrum of color. With more than a dozen pieces, the viewer is at first inclined to peer closely to see the details of Eric’s hand and then step back and see the full joy of his imagination. Fine artist and photographer Eric Auger is pleased to present his “New Life” exhibit to raise awareness of suicide prevention especially in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ)* youth community.
About the Artist
Eric J. Auger (ō zhāy) is a mixed media artist and costume designer living and working in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. Born in 1969, he holds a BFA from Rhode Island College in Photography with minors in Graphic Design. He expresses his unique style in a variety of media including acrylic paint on canvas, pastel, colored pencil, photography and digital images. After his 14-year career as a Visual Merchandiser for one of the country’s top retailers, Eric became a performance artist. Today, Eric is the Creative Director and Co-Owner of TEN31 Productions where he has created hundreds of handcrafted costumes. Best known locally as the “living statutes” at Waterfire, TEN31's performers have traveled around the world showcasing their one of a kind unique imagery, which when combined with theatrical choreography, leaves audiences breathless.
Fine artist and photographer Eric Auger is pleased to present his “New Life” exhibit to raise awareness of suicide prevention especially in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ)* youth community.
“All youth, teens and young adults struggle to find their place and identity in their home, at school and in the community,” says Eric Auger, “and a satisfying future seems unreachable and often times unimaginable. Certainly, those feelings are shared by gay and straight teens no matter where they live or their life’s situation.”
But what made Eric journey different was the coming of age in a world that was only beginning to acknowledge the needs of the gay and lesbian community. There were no school based support programs and the adult gay world was out of reach so even role models were difficult to find. As a gay teen, Eric knew first-hand the raw emotions of struggling to first feel comfortable with his identity and all the while trying to gain the acceptance of family and friends “Suicide hovers over you when you are a gay teen”, says Auger, “and the future seems dark and colorless.”
“Because of my personal journey from gay teen to adult, I know first-hand how words can hurt and crush your spirit and your ambition. Along the way, I was fortunate to find my passion in the performing and visual arts, a place where I could express my own needs and wants and at the same time connect with my future. As time went on, I realized I had to distance myself from those around me who would try to use my sexuality as a reason to crush my hope. Over time, I knew I was more than a gay teen. I was a hardworking, talented, dedicated individual who deserved to dream of a future filled with optimism. I made up my mind to surround myself with people from the gay and straight community who valued the things that I valued – life, love and mutual respect. Once I made that decision, my life went from flat and lifeless to one of hope, possibility and endless color!”
For more information about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered health, please visithttp://www.cdc.gov/lgbthealth/
For local resources and support, please visit Aids Care Ocean State at http://www.aidscareos.org/
For local information about suicide prevention, please visit The Samaritans of Rhode Island atwww.samaritansri.org
It has been quite a winter! New installations are starting to pop up around town through April 3rd. Follow the map and enjoy these installations while they last. New installations by Suzanne Volmer and Judd Schiffman are installed especially for the NCECA conference in March, and will be up through mid-April All other through June.
About the Work and the Artist
A resident of Providence Rhode Island, Carolina was born in Santiago, Chile, and came to the USA in 1970. Carolina attended the Rhode Island School of Design and graduated in 1991 with a BFA in Illustration.
She has been illustrating full-time since 1991, and has worked on a wide variety of assignments from book covers, posters, editorial and retail mural assignments for clients in North America, Europe and South America.Carolina has won several awards, the first upon her graduation from RISD, she received the John Randall Orth Award, given to one graduate every year, whose goal is to pursue a freelance illustration career. Within her first year as a freelance illustrator, she won first place for page presentation, by the New England Associated Press. Soon after she received more awards over the years by The Art Director’s Club of New Jersey, The Catholic Press Association, and has been included in Print Magazine’s Regional Design Annual.
Go to hintstudio.com for more about her.
About the Work and the Artist
“After a few years all that is left is the green grass of expectation. The pure green grass of Antarctic tundra and the simplistic struggle of man vs. supply, spitting up ancient virgin dust doing doughnuts in truck 120. The ultimate tragedy was to have traveled so far, only to find that it was not far enough, and perhaps no place was”
David Craig is a Risd printmaking graduate currently working out of his studio in downtown Pawtucket, RI. These three works are part of a larger series that explore the memory and experience of his time working for the United States Antarctic Program in 2008.
Go to davidmcraig.com for more about him.
About the Artist and the Work
Suzanne Volmer is an internationally recognized artist based in Rhode Island. Her artwork is experiential and experimental in context. She is an independent artist. Professional organizations with which she is affiliated include the International Sculpture Center, NCECA, and the International Art Critics Association. She graduated form Pratt Institute and has taught at Rhode Island School of Design and been a guest artist at MassArt in Boston. Her work is exhibited in venues nationally and internationally. Her past experience includes being a preparator at Leo Castelli Gallery and working as an assistant to Mary Frank. Along with being an exhibiting artist she regularly contributes feature articles to “Artscope Magazine” a Boston-based publication with international distribution, and she writes reviews for “Sculpture” Magazine of the ISC, Washington, DC.
Exhibitions featuring artworks by sculptor Suzanne Volmer appear in Providence this March/April with the arching title of Augmented Earth. In three venues these shows coincide with the national NECA conference in Providence, RI, March 25th-28th 2015. The exhibits reach out to audiences with a dynamic that maps Providence with an experiential aesthetic. These exhibitions take place in three very different registered landmark buildings of the city and use traditional settings to amplify contemporary content.
Suzanne Volmer’s installation High Tor is at the Westminster Street entrance of University of Rhode Island, Providence Feinstein Campus in the group exhibition: Honoring Harriet Brisson: Ceramicist–Mentor–Friend Including over 30 artists the exhibition specifically honors the unique career and contributions of Harriet Brisson. Curated by Steven Pennell it continues through March 28th and is open 9am-9pm Monday through Friday and 9am-5pm Saturday, and closed Sundays.
Peel ‘n’ Crush is a sculpture visible in the bay window of the Handicraft Club at historic Truman Beckwith House at 42 College Street, between Rhode Island School of Design and Brown University on College Hill (near the corner of College and Benefit Streets). This is a short-term installation March 24th -April 1st, 2015. Facing the street the installation is clearly visible day and evening.
About the artist and the work
The most fundamental and difficult question a person can ask him or herself is “Who Am I?” It is challenging to truly know another person, and yet I think it is even more difficult to know oneself. We are all composed of a combination of culture, personality, family upbringing, past experiences, and genetics. These qualities inform the way we think about, experience and interpret the world. History can feel inescapable but how much of that history is true and if we can slip away, what are we left with? My work concentrates on the nuances of the question, “Who am I?” with a primary interest in the way that Jewish American culture constructs identity. Referring to information gathered in literature, art, film, television and history, I investigate the expressions of Jewish culture and how these values are perceived and demonstrated in society. Among other sources, my imagery is found in memories, episodes of Seinfeld and stories that my grandparents have told me and translated into pieces that appear to have been thoroughly touched. The touching is essential in delineating a reality from a memory, a stereotype from a truth. I am never searching to get it right, but am always hoping to expose another layer.
Judd's work will be on view during the NCECA conference.
"The National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts (NCECA) is a dynamic, 501(c)3 organization that engages and sustains a community for ceramic art, teaching and learning. In addition to deepening knowledge within the field, NCECA expands it by working to cultivate the next generation of ceramic artists and enthusiasts through programing that affects professional artists, K-12 schools, community centers, universities, museums, galleries, businesses, organizations, collectors and enthusiasts of ceramic art. Currently comprised of approximately 4,000 members from the United States and more than 20 foreign countries, NCECA reaches thousands of additional individuals each year through its programs, publications, events, exhibitions and resources.
NCECA cultivates and sustains networks for reflective and creative practice through an annual conference, special interest symposia, and national and regional exhibitions. NCECA’s annual conference features dozens of presenters, demonstrations networking opportunities and exhibitions over three and a half days each spring, each year in a different US city. NCECA’s Board of Directors and special appointees review hundreds of proposals for sessions and exhibitions gathered through open calls for submissions. Sponsored exhibitions include the NCECA Biennial, the NCECA Invitational and the National Student Juried Exhibition. In conjunction with the NCECA-sponsored exhibitions the organization also reviews, sites and promotes nearly 100 concurrent exhibitions in the host region surrounding the annual conference."