Meet Artist Mentors
Erik L. Peterson is a Chicago-based public artist, sculptor, and museum educator. Drawing on the vocabularies of traditional arts media along with architecture and transportation infrastructure, Erik L. Peterson creates site-specific installations, public artworks, urban performances, edible sculptures, and neon artworks that challenge a viewer’s sense of space and self. Teasing out the absurdities of social convention with wry humor, his projects give viewers agency to experience the physical act of perception. Peterson’s unconventional approach to materials and his commitment to audience engagement serve to activate the public realm in new and unexpected ways. His art transports the pedestrian into a space of subtle strangeness and surprise, offering viewers a new way to participate as members of, and in the space within, a complex and changing public.
Erik’s work been featured in solo exhibitions at the Arts Club of Chicago, Open House Contemporary, EXPO CHICAGO, Bert Green Fine Art, Waubonsee Community College, Project 1612, Chicago Artists Coalition; large-scale public art projects and performances for the Broadview Hotel in Toronto, the Downtown Norfolk Council, Chicago Department of Special Events & Cultural Affairs (DCASE), and Pick Museum of Anthropology; and in group shows at The Franklin, Ralph Arnold Gallery at Loyola University, Arizona State University, Eastern Illinois University, University of Nebraska–Omaha, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Columbia College, and the Chicago Artists’ Coalition among others. Peterson is a founder of Hyde Park Kunstverein (HPK), an experimental “community museum” and Qeej Hero, a cross-cultural video game featuring an ancient Hmong musical instrument.
He holds a B.F.A in Sculpture from Washington University in St. Louis and an M.F.A. from the University of Illinois at Chicago. In addition to his artmaking practice, Peterson is the Manager of Family Programs and Student Engagement at the Smart Museum of Art. Peterson recently completed Ashland, a sculptural bench made from reclaimed ash wood, located in Edgewater Beach as one of the featured artists in the City of Chicago’s Year of Public Art in 2018. Erik will be a guest speaker for Artist Case Studies: Project Development on December 4, 2018.
(Updated in 2019)
Hương Ngô (Huong Ngo, Ngô Ngọc Hương, 吳玉香) is an interdisciplinary artist whose conceptual practice connects the personal and the political, giving material form to histories which have been rendered invisible and interrogating the ideological origins of their erasure. Having grown up as a refugee in the American South, Ngô creates work that reframes the hybrid, the imperfect, and the non-fluent as sites of survival and knowledge. She is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (BFA Fine Arts, 2001), School of the Art Institute of Chicago (MFA Art & Technology, 2004), and was a studio fellow at the Whitney Independent Study Program (2012). She was recently awarded the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Grant in Vietnam (2016) for her research, begun at the Archives Nationales d’Outre-Mer in France and recently presented at DePaul Art Museum (2017), that examines the colonial history of surveillance in Vietnam and the anti-colonial strategies of resistance vis-à-vis the activities of female organizers and liaisons. Her work, which has been described as “deftly and defiantly decolonial” by New City and “what intersectional feminist art looks like” by the Chicago Tribune, has been exhibited at the MoMA (2018), MCA Chicago (2004, 2016, 2017), Para Site HK (2017), Nhà Sàn Collective (2016), the Queens Museum (2014), The Kitchen (2011, 2014), and the New Museum (2012) among others. She has been awarded the DCASE Individual Artist Program Grant (2017, 2018), the Illinois Arts Council (2018), Chicago Artists Coalition BOLT residency (2016-17), Rhizome Commission (2011), and has been in residency through the Camargo Foundation Core Program (2018), LATITUDE Chicago (2015), and SOMA Mexico (2014). She has taught at the MoMA, Pratt Institute, and Parsons The New School for Design and is currently Assistant Professor in Contemporary Practices at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Hương will be a guest speaker for Artist Case Studies: Project Development on December 4, 2018.
Meet Artist Residents
Alexandra Antoine is an interdisciplinary artist from South Florida who now resides in Chicago, Illinois. Her work addresses the themes of identity and culture through the use of typography, line and portraiture. She uses the portrait as a tool to re/present individuals of the African diaspora while exploring her relationship to them within the larger narrative of her Haitian identity. She incorporates bold colors and intuitive line gestures to portray the richness and beauty of her people. She holds a Bachelors degree in Fine Arts and Art Education from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her work has been exhibited around Chicago at institutions such as the Hyde Park Art Center, Roman Susan Gallery, Roots & Culture Gallery, South Side Community Art Center, ARC Gallery and Griffin Gallery.
Allison (Hales) Ellingson is an artist based in Chicago working primarily with textiles and the social fabric. She received a B.A. from St. Olaf College (2002), a Master of Divinity from McCormick Theological Seminary (2007) and an M.F.A. (2015) in Fiber and Material Studies from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her participation in the FIELD/WORK Residency marks the end of a three year hiatus from art during which she made two human beings.
Beth Bradfish (composer and sound artist) explores contemporary acoustic and electronic sounds. Her focus is on creating environments where the audience is free to move through the sound and experience it with more than their ears. She has been awarded an artist’s residency fellowship at Ragdale and her work was commissioned (2013) by Access Contemporary Music as part of the Open House Chicago celebration of the Chicago Architectural Foundation. Her work has also been performed at Spectrum NYC and Constellation (Chicago), and in September, 2014 she was selected as a featured composer in the Oscillations series of Experimental Sound Studio. She is a member of Chicago Composers’ Consortium and has taught as an artist in residence at the School of the Art Institute Chicago. She received her MFA in Music Composition from Vermont College of Fine Arts.
Charle Luckett is a writer, stargazer, and community volunteer. She holds a BFA from Southern Illinois University. She has studied and taught Cinema Production at San Francisco State University, and completed the Comedic Writing Program at the Second City Training Center. Believing strongly in community organizing through arts education she has taught digital video production in Chicago Public Schools and currently volunteers with the Chicago- All Stars Project, helping create safe spaces for youth performance. When she isn’t in-route on Chicago’s various L-Trains she can be found fostering kittens & perfecting her best Carl Sagan impersonation.
Connie Noyes’ interdisciplinary art practice examines social constructions and assigned values of idealized beauty and value. Through actions both in the studio and on site, the question provoked is: what constitutes beauty and worth and how do our very perceptions construct this reality? Born in Washington D.C, Connie Noyes is an interdisciplinary artist currently living and working in Chicago. She received her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and MA degree in Psychology from Notre Dame de Namur University in Belmont California. She was a recent participant in the Center Program at the Hyde Park Art Center and a resident artist at ChaNorth/Chashama in New York. In 2016, she was a resident artist with Salwa Zeidan Gallery, represented by them at Art Abu Dhabi and Art Bahrain. Her work has been exhibited both nationally and internationally in places such as San Francisco, Paris, London and Innsbruck, including the 3rd Biennale International d’art non-objective in Grenoble, France. International artists’ residencies include, the Emaar International Art Symposium in Dubai and Thupelo International Workshop in Cape Town, South Africa. Noyes' work is in corporate, private, and museum collections including The Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago, The Ekstrom Library of Photographic Archives Special Collections in Louisville and the Greenville County Museum in South Carolina. Her project, Under the Freeway, was chosen as a featured project for Chicago Artists Month 2015 – The City as Studio. Her current practice includes Good Mourning Café a pop-up traveling art installation and social experiment on love, loss and all things left behind. GMC will pop-up in various locations around Chicago during the next year.
Denise Hoover is an artist discovering that making art is a silent conversation on many levels, an awareness of internal and external nuances that prompt her to create. She welcomes the blind impulse arriving unannounced from unconscious or subconscious treasures. Their conversations are rooted in the now time and place with an inward gaze toward past and sometimes the future laying out a myriad of possibilities, usually beckoned toward a new path to an unknown destination. The fun or scary part begins, originating from different vantage points. It may begin with a sense experience, an investigation of material, a gestural mark making impulse, a color or colors, a visual grabbed from reality, a connection with art history, a symbol or sign, a word etc. etc. Body, mind and heart are unified in the recollection, reflection, wiring and timing of these silent conversations between the artist as the work begins with the untitled. She feels the process is akin to that of an engineer, an Aesthetic Engineer. The final conversation is with the audience or single viewer, most often, in silence. Denise Hoover graduated from St. Mary’s College of Notre Dame (enrolled in the co-ex program with University of Notre Dame) in 1969. She received her Certificate of Painting from SAIC in 2008 and her MFA from Vermont College of Fine Art in July 2015.
Fontaine Capel is a Chicago-based interdisciplinary artist, curator, educator, and facilitator. She is Co-Founder and Executive Director of the alternative art space Hume Chicago. In conjunction with her studio and curatorial practice, she has worked as a teaching artist at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and Marwen. She received a B.A. at Oberlin College where she studied Art History and Studio Art.
J. Slater (artist name Onyx) builds light installations as a means of public and communal gathering as well as a set to experiment with their performance works. These performances include scrawled text, scripts, contemporary dance, costumes, character design and metaphors for the intersections of queerness and blackness. In their recent site specific performances Onyx brings ritualism from an Afro-diasporic and indigenous root and displays the experience on the streets of Chicago.
Through her work, Chicago-based artist Lindsey Dorr-Niro aims to make art a practice of critical consciousness, calling viewers deeper into themselves and relation with the world. Her installations disrupt and reorganize our vision and being in a way that enables us to see, imagine, and be differently -- facilitating an embodied, contemplative, and ecstatic experience. Lindsey currently lives and works as an artist and educator in Chicago, Illinois. Recent projects include solo exhibition This Land Again (2017) at Sector 2337 in Chicago, In the Mesh (2016) --a site-responsive event in conjunction with This Land Again at Sector 2337 with poet Marty McConnell, and A Primacy of Perception (2016)--a solo exhibition at Indiana University’s Fuller Projects in Bloomington, Indiana.
Luis Mejico is a multidisciplinary artist and independent curator. Xe has performed and exhibited work at the Art Institute of Chicago, Museum of Contemporary Art of Chicago, Queens Museum in New York, Mana Contemporary Chicago, Links Hall, Zhou Brothers Art Center, The Oak Park Art League, The Uptown Arts Center, and Jan Brandt Gallery, among others. Xis first solo show, I will hurt you, recently opened in February 2017. Mejico just finished a summer-long fellowship at Oxbow, and will begin a curatorial project with AIR Gallery in New York, set to premiere in 2019. Xe is a 2017 FIELD/WORK Resident.
Using performance, video and sculptural installations, my work focuses on the relationships between identities, iconography and the social complexities that have shaped American culture. My creative process includes collaborations with educators and artists to enrich the acts of making by deepening the insight and meaning of the collective work. I consider what it means to position myself as an artist and citizen in creating visual forms prompting critical conversations surrounding this thematic structure. In addition to my practice, I work with the creative learning and research space collective Compound Yellow developing programming under the theme of the Self-Reliance School. Since 2007 I have worked in the exhibits department at Chicago Children’s Museum supporting alternative forms of education through play.
A love of textile design and painting has taken artist Monica Rezman around the world. She studied in Chicago and again in San Miguel Allende, traveled to the pueblas in Chiapas and Guatemala to weave with the native women, worked in an atelier in Italy, and lived in India. She is presently working with textiles, paint and embroidery to create a series of paintings and sculptures that speak about her collective experience.
Monica Trinidad is a queer Latinx artist and cultural organizer born, raised, and residing in Chicago, Illinois. Over the past several years, Monica has created graphics, posters, and illustrations documenting struggles for racial justice in Chicago, emphasizing art and cultural work as integral in campaigns and community efforts. She is a co-founder of Brown and Proud Press (2011) and For the People Artists Collective (2015), in addition to co-host on the Lit Review podcast. Monica holds a Bachelors Degree in Gender and Women’s Studies from the University of Illinois at Chicago, where she was awarded the Civic Engagement, Community Service, and Community Organizing (CESCO) award in 2016. Her work has been exhibited at the National Museum of Mexican Art, Jane Addams Hull-House Museum, DuSable Museum of African American History, Hairpin Arts Center, Roman Susan Gallery, and Art In These Times.
Image: Monica Trinidad, "The Universe is on Our Side", 2020, illustration.
Nora uses choreography, words, and melody to delineate and unspool patterns of contemporary existence-- often those that govern gender, popular culture, and relationship dynamics--and point to possibilities for queer reimagining. Nora Sharp was born in Chicago.
Orkideh Torabi make paintings that lampoon patriarchal societies, depicting men as absurd clown-like figures, drawing attention to the personal, political and social issues facing women. By portraying the figures in her paintings with cartoonish whimsy, she is trying to strip the male oppressors of their power by undermining the culture of machismo that pervades many societies. Orkideh Torabi was born in Iran. She received her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2016, and she received her MA and BA from The University of Art in Tehran. Torabi’s solo and two-person shows include Yes, Please & Thank You in Los Angeles, Western Exhibitions and Horton Gallery in New York City. She has been in several group shows such as Andrew Rafacz Gallery and the Hyde Park Art Center in Chicago. She was selected for the 2017 Midwest issue of New American Paintings and has work in the Microsoft Art Collection in Redmond, WA. Torabi lives and works in Chicago. She is represented by Western Exhibitions, Chicago. She lives and works in Chicago.
Born and raised in Chicago, Sandra Bridges attended Chicago Public Schools and Illinois universities. She received a B.A in art education from Southern Illinois University in 1974 and from Roosevelt University received a M.A. in Administration/Supervision in Education in 1977. However she would not pursue an art career until thirty five years later after retiring from teaching in the inner-city schools. Nonetheless, the launch of her art career as a fine oil painter has been stellar. With awards, several solo shows, and paintings featured in a major motion picture and minor films, many of her paintings have caught the eye of prominent collectors. In 2015 she was awarded the Excellence Award for Visual Art by the African American Alliance of Artists in Chicago. Her work has been featured in Artist Portfolio magazine and Jazz in Me magazine. She has had solo shows at the Black Ensemble Theatre, Renaissance Court, in the Chicago Cultural Center, the Union League of Chicago, the Harold Washington Library and the Old Town Leslie Wolfe Gallery. She is planning for an upcoming solo showing of the body of work “Southern Roots Revisited” for February-March 2018 at the Koehnline Museum of Art of Oakton Community College in DesPlains Illinois to celebrate Black History. At best, one critic stated it this way:“Sandra Bridges is primarily an oil painter. Sandra is known for creating emotionally charged paintings—be it her ability to capture the energy of a jazz performance or the strength of character on a subjects face. In a sense Sandra’s work serves as a social bridge. Her powerful work stands as an exploration of the past, present and future, revealing that we are all linked in some way...” from FASO Featured Artist, Fine Arts Views, 2014 Carrie Turner, Editor
Santina Amato is an interdisciplinary artist born in Australia to Italian immigrants, and has lived and worked in USA since 2010. Her practice incorporates video, sculpture, installation, painting and photography and is deeply rooted in psychoanalytic thinking and feminist theory, attempting to translate the complexities of her own female sexuality, desire and erotica within a patriarchal system. Amato received a Master of Fine Arts (2017) at the School of Art Institute of Chicago. Her video works have been screened at ExFest Film and Video Festival, Chicago, Brooklyn Public TV, New York, and The International Women’s Day Video Screening in Melbourne, Australia. She has exhibited extensively in Australia and the U.S.A including Detroit International Videonale, Kuntshalle Detroit Museum of Contemporary Art, MI, and Currents 2012, International New Media Arts Festival, Santa Fe, NM. She is the founder and director of Moving_Image_00:00, a biannual festival of moving image works created by Chicago based artists. She has received funding from the American Australian Association, NY, and held positions as Fellow and Artist-in-Residence at ACRE, Steuben, WI, Artspace Visual Arts Center, Sydney, Australia, New York Art Residency and Studios Foundation, New York, U.S.A and BRIC Media Arts House, Brooklyn, U.S.A Amato’s work is part of a collective photographic portfolio at The Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection and The Art Institute of Chicago and video collection at the Victorian College of the Arts, Melbourne, Australia.
Simon Pyle’s work deals with preservation and loss in the digital age. His aesthetic is influenced by imaging technologies: the shape of LCD pixels, the compression of a jpeg file, or a low-resolution image used for computer-vision and facial recognition. With an intermedia approach, his work draws on the fundamental units and idioms of technology. Pyle studied at Mills College, Stanford, and Camberwell College, and has shown his work in Los Angeles, Santa Fe, New Orleans, Chicago, San Francisco, and Guangzhou. He is Lab Director at LATITUDE Chicago and serves on the boards of Mills College and Pumping Station: One, Chicago’s oldest makerspace.
Sukjoon Lee is a Chicago-based kinetic sculpture artist. He was born in Seoul, Korea and had studied sculpture in BFA and MFA at Seoul National University. Before he moved to Chicago, He share his artistic skills with students at Seoul Art High school for five years during his personal art practice and shows. His kinetic sculpture interacts with audience to create an open theater where the boundaries are blurred between the stage and the audience. Their relation has a constant cycle of change, transition and making a new perspective, which can disturb the audience to have a specific cognitive perception about the space where they belong. He received his second MFA with Art & Technology Studies from School of the Art institute of Chicago for the aesthetics of elaborate kinetic machining and electronics, and keeps working in Chicago.
I’m interested in making sculpture that elicits tactile curiosity. Is it hard or soft? What happens if I reach out and touch the surface? There is a give and take between the gentle structure I create and the nature of the material. Each piece evolves from loosely controlled manipulations such as the weight of gravity pressing against the resistance of hand built structures or a torn edge of paper. Susan Dwyer received her BFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She currently lives in Chicago and works out of her West Loop studio.
Tracie Hayes is an artist from Charlotte, NC who recently moved to Chicago. She graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with degrees in studio art and biology. She is currently working with the Echinacea Project, an ecology lab at the Chicago Botanic Garden. Her experiences in ecology heavily inform her art. Tracie’s work considers the ecological address, the vulnerability and stability of ecosystems, the process of ecology, and the communication of scientific findings. She works with various media, including wood, hemp, thread, paint, and rock.
Udita Upadhyaya is an interdisciplinary artist who uses her body as a primary material for making. Her work spans live art, devised theatre, performative photographs, sculpture, installation, video, writing, text, and fiber arts. Upadhyaya works with the principles of Vipassana meditation to uncover the trajectories of desire, craving, trauma, shame and their many intersections. Upadhyaya studied International Relations and Film Production at Boston University before obtaining an MFA from School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She also has an MBA from S.P.Jain Institute for Management and Research, Mumbai, following which she investigated the rise of materialism, labor and urban migration in the rural community in western India. This experience informs her research and community based approach to creative practice.
Yewen Dong was born and grew up in Shenzhen, a coastal city in China. She received her BA in Art Design from the China Central Academy of Fine Arts in 2013, continuing her education at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago; she received her MFA in Ceramics in 2017. Her art practice spans sculpture, ceramics, papermaking, video, painting, and drawing. She lives and works in Chicago.
Meet Guest Speakers
Bianca is founder of Marks on Canvas, a Chicago-based boutique agency that specializes in strategic creative content, marketing media, project management and public relations for clients engaged in the arts, including: visual artists, galleries, art fairs, organizations and creative spaces. She’s an arts enthusiast with 12+ years of proven expertise driving brand awareness through compelling campaigns and multi-channel communications that integrate social media, content creation, public relations material, advertising, media, and team collaboration. Notable clients include visual artist Amanda Williams. She’s collaborated on projects with institutions and publications including: The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Arts Club Chicago, EXPO Chicago, the City of Chicago Year of Public Art program, Monique Meloche gallery “off the wall” outdoor exhibition, The Chicago Tribune and Chicago Magazine. She is the 2018 US Pavilion Venice Architecture Biennale Communications and PR liaison for Amanda Williams and Andres Hernandez and President of the Board of Directors for Chicago-based arts organization, Spudnik Press Cooperative. She resides in Chicago, IL.
Caroline Stearns is the Director of THE MISSION, a contemporary art gallery located in West Town that represents artists from the United States and Latin America. After receiving a Bachelor of Arts in Studio Art and in Biology from Lake Forest College, Stearns began working at THE MISSION in 2012. Stearns was a guest lecturer at the School of the Art Institute through the school's visiting artist and curator program earlier this year and a panelist for The Inside Scoop on Artist Opportunities for CAC's LAUNCH Invitational Residency in 2016. Exploring distinctive cultural, social and historical contexts, THE MISSION advocates for artists that shape, inform, and challenge contemporary art across media and genres. THE MISSION has been featured in ARTFORUM, Art in America, Hyperallergic and art ltd., and has facilitated the acquisition of artist's works into numerous museum, corporate, and private collections. Dedicated to supporting artistic experimentation and forging new exchanges between artists and audiences, THE MISSION began THE SUB-MISSION in 2012. Located below the main gallery, THE SUB-MISSION is a non-commercial, site-specific exhibition space dedicated to the development of artists living and working in Chicago. THE SUB-MISSION was created to foster the investigation of new ideas and artistic processes and to facilitate an exchange between artists and the community.
Christa Donner reimagines the human / animal body through a range of media including large-scale drawing, printmaking, digital animation, and small-press publication. Her process often incorporates public projects and collaborations around narratives of bodily experience. Her work is exhibited internationally, including projects for Gallery 400 (Chicago, USA); the Museum Bellerive (Zurich, Switzerland); Kravets-Wehby Gallery (New York, USA); BankART NYK (Yokohama, Japan); Chiaki Kamikawa Contemporary Art (Paphos, Cyprus); the ANTI Festival of Contemporary Art (Kuopio, Finland); and the Centro Columbo Americano (Medellin, Colombia). In 2012, when her daughter was one year old, Donner initiated Cultural ReProducers, an evolving creative platform for and about cultural workers who are also working it out as parents. Cultural ReProducers continues to foster visibility and support through events, publications, skillsharing, and an extensive online resource for artists and institutions. Donner's practice extends to her role as a curator and educator. She currently teaches courses in creative research, drawing, and small-press publishing at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Cortney Lederer is an independent curator and art consultant with sixteen years of experience managing an array of artistic programming for organizations and businesses. From 2011–14 she served as the Director of Exhibitions and Residencies at the Chicago Artists Coalition (CAC), where she designed and managed its two residency programs: BOLT Residency and HATCH Projects. While at CAC, Lederer curated and managed special projects for businesses such as tech incubator 1871, Patron Tequila, TOMS Shoes, Groupon and Taste of Chicago (DCASE). She has curated and produced hundreds of solo and group exhibitions during her tenure at CAC. In June 2014, Lederer launched CNL Art Consulting (CNL), which provides project-based consulting to organizations with a specialization in curating, project management, program design and development. CNL works with notable organizations such as 3Arts, Chicago Artists Coalition, Lillltsreet Art Center and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC). Currently, CNL is acting as project manager of EXPO Chicago’s Palais de Tokyo initiative. Lederer is an instructor in the Arts Administration and Policy department at SAIC and serves on the board of Every House as a Door, the Education Advisory Committee for CAC and programming advisory committee for Snowy City Arts.
Dana Bassett has been described as a writer, producer, problem solver, logistical coordinator, fundraiser, shapeshifter, talker, listener and a sensitive, yet demanding, soul. Born in Miami Florida the same year Michael Jackson’s Bad was released, Dana currently lives in a converted former funeral home in the Pilsen neighborhood of Chicago. She has worked with up-and-coming organizations such as The Artists’ Cooperative Residency and Exhibitions Project (ACRE), Borscht Film Festival, and Bad at Sports. Her writing has been published in outlets such as Hyperallergic, The Miami Rail and The Seen. Dana formerly served as the Development Director for ACRE (Artists’ Cooperative Residency and Exhibitions), a volunteer-run nonprofit based in Chicago devoted to employing various systems of support for emerging artists.
Duncan MacKenzie is an Artist, Pundit, Educator and a Founder of Bad at Sports (B@S) podcast and website. With B@S he has produced over 500 interviews with artists and cultural luminaries such as Suzanne Lacy, Kerry James Marshall, Luc Tuymans, Jeff Wall, and Helen Molesworth. Along side his work with Bad at Sports he makes and regularly shows art work internationally with his collaborator Christian Kuras. Between B@S and Kuras, he has realized exhibitions and projects with art fairs like NADA Miami, EXPO Chicago, PULSE Miami, and Volta NYC, and institutions like the Contemporary Art Museum of St Louis, The Queens Museum, The Walker Art Center, and apexart NYC. His work has been written about in Afterall, artforum.com, Art in America, Flash Art, the New York Times, and the Chicago Tribune. He is currently the Chair of Art and Art History at Columbia College Chicago.
Edra Soto (b. Puerto Rico) is a Chicago-based interdisciplinary artist, educator, curator, and co-director of the outdoor project space THE FRANKLIN. She is invested in creating and providing visual and educational models propelled by empathy and generosity. Her recent projects are motivated by civic and social actions focus on fostering relationships with a wide range of communities. Recent venues presenting Soto’s work include the Pérez Art Museum Miami (FL), Hunter East Harlem Gallery (NY), UIC Gallery 400 (IL), Bemis Center for Contemporary Art (NE), and the Museum of Contemporary Art of Chicago (IL) amongst others. Soto has attended residency programs at Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture (ME), Beta-Local (PR), the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Residency (FL), Arts/Industry at the Kohler Foundation (WI), Headlands Center for the Arts (CA) and Project Row Houses (TX) amongst others. In 2017 Soto was awarded the Efroymson Contemporary Arts for installation artists. Her co-curation for the exhibition Present Standard at the Chicago Cultural Center was praised with overwhelmingly positive reviews from the Chicago Tribune, Newcity, PBS The Art Assignment and Artforum. Soto was recently featured in Newcity’s annual Art 50 issue Chicago’s Artists’ Artists and at VAM Studio 2017 Influencers. Soto is a lecturer for the Contemporary Practices Department at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, from where she holds an MFA , and a BFA degree from Escuela de Artes Plastics de Puerto Rico. Edra will be a guest speaker for Artist Case Studies: Business Models on October 16, 2018.
Emanuel Aguilar is a gallerist and independent curator living and working in Chicago, IL. In 2015 he founded PATRON, a contemporary art gallery with a focus on emerging artists and conceptual practice. Previously he was a director at Kavi Gupta Gallery in Chicago and Berlin and a founder of the arts and culture magazine Jettison Quarterly. Aguilar serves on the board of ACRE Residency.
Lifelong Chicagoan/artist and Prince "fam" Felicia Holman is an independent cultural producer/programmer and facilitator, as well as a co-founder of Honey Pot Performance. As both artist and producer, Felicia presents and supports innovative interdisciplinary art that engages audience and inspires community. Recent projects include:
- Serving as City Bureau Public Newsroom Series Curator (Fall 2019).
- Featured artist / facilitator at Flux Factory's "Must They Also Be Gods" group exhibition (Fall 2019; NYC).
- Awarded 2020 Ragdale Foundation artist residency (Summer 2020).
- Facilitating career development programming for emerging artists (Ongoing).
Felicia relishes her dynamic artrepreneurial life and sums it up in 3 words: 'Creator, Connector, Conduit'.
J. Gibran Villalobos is an administrator, curator, and art historian who is an alum of CAC’s HATCH residency. In 2016 he was elected to attend the Advocacy Leadership Institute where he was invited to the White House Office of Public Engagement, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus to speak to key issues affecting Latinos in Chicago. He served as the 2017 resident curator at the Chicago Cultural Center where he launched an inaugural summit of Latino artists and administrators across the United States. For this project, he received the Act Up Awards from the Chicago Community Trust, and a Propeller Grant. He has held the posts of Cultural Liaison for the Chicago Park District in the department of Culture, Arts, and Nature, and Public Programs and Partnerships Manager for the Chicago Architecture Biennial. He currently serves on the Auxiliary Board for the National Museum of Mexican Art and on the Board of Directors for the Chicago Artists Coalition. In 2019 he was recipient of the “Leaders of Color Fellow” by Americans for the Arts and was also named by the Field Foundation as recipient of the “Leaders for a New Chicago” award. He is currently serving as the co-Chair to the National Association of Latino Arts and Culture nationwide summit for 2020 in which more than 200 Latino artists and administrators will meet and gather in Chicago. He is faculty lecturer at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in the Department of Arts Administration & Policy and currently works as Assistant Curator in Performance and Public Programs at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago.
Jason Pallas is an artist, archivist, curator, and educator primarily concerned with projects at the intersection of the personal, the popular, and the political. In addition to his work as Manager of Community Engagement and Arts Learning at the Smart Museum of Art, his other projects include the Teen Creative Agency at MCA Chicago and the Institute for Encyclopedic Amalgamation. He earned a MFA from the University of Chicago and BA degrees from Rice University.
Jordan Martins is a Chicago based visual artist, curator, and educator. He received his MFA in visual arts from the Universidade Federal da Bahia in Salvador, Brazil in 2007, and is a lecturer at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and North Park University. He is the executive director of Comfort Station, a multi-disciplinary art space in Chicago. Martins’s visual work is based in collage processes, including painting, photography, video and installation, and he has exhibited nationally and internationally. His work has been featured in exhibitions at The Mission, Evanston Art Center, LVL3, The Franklin, The Museu de Arte da Bahia, Goldfinch, and Experimental Sound Studio. He was a resident in the Chicago Artists Coalition’s HATCH program in 2013. Martins is co-director of the Perto da Lá <> Close to There, a multi-disciplinary project with international artists in Salvador, Brazil and Chicago.
Image: Oxbow 3, 2018, Medium: oil on inkjet printed cotton/linen, Dimensions: 48 x 32 in.
Julia Fischbach is a director and co-founder of PATRON, contemporary art gallery with a focus on emerging artists and conceptual practice, and working in Chicago, IL. Previously she was a director at Kavi Gupta Gallery in Chicago and Berlin for seventeen years.
Kalena Chevalier currently serves as the Program Director for the Cultural Grants Program at the City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events. Kalena has 14 years of experience working in Chicago's arts and culture community. She has worked artistically and administratively with organizations including Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf Theatre Company and Writers' Theatre, and most recently as the Associate Director of Development for Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, where she managed foundation and government fundraising efforts over seven years. She is also a playwright and her plays have been workshopped, developed and produced by several local storefront theaters. Kalena graduated from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor with degrees in Theatre, Dramatic Writing and History. Kalena will be a guest speaker for Mock Proposal Review Panels on December 17, 2018.
Kate Schutta is an artist, educator, and Director of Career and Professional Experience (CAPX) at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Kate Schutta advises students and alumni/ae on professional and job search strategies and coordinates Career and Professional Experience (CAPX) activities and resources. Schutta’s past experience includes book cover and poster illustration and teaching at SAIC and the Royal College of Art. Exhibitions include: National Museum of Art, Wroclaw; Royal College of Art (RCA); and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Grants and Fellowships: Chicago Artists Assistance Program grants; RCA Research Fellowship in Communication Design; and Peoples' Republic of Poland Art & Culture Grant. Education: MFA (1989), BFA (1985), School of the Art Institute of Chicago; BA History of Art (1983), Bryn Mawr College. Kate will be a guest speaker for Artist Case Studies: Business Models on October 16, 2018.
Kate Sierzputowski is a freelance writer and arts organizer based in Chicago. Fascinated by artists’ studio processes, she founded the website INSIDE\WITHIN in 2013 to physically explore and archive the creative spaces of Chicago's emerging and established artists. Kate regularly contributes art writing to Hyperallergic, Colossal, the Chicago Reader, and Chicago Magazine. She serves as half of the curatorial duo Episode with Tusk-founder Mary Eleanor Wallace, runs a small gallery on her ear called Chandelier, and has been a co-director of the artist-run gallery space Julius Caesar since 2015.
Lee Anderson is the founder of Starkweather, designer, creative strategist, and fashion advocate. In addition to her design practice, she has produced small and large-scale events around the world for changemakers in the fashion and creative industries, such as Paris Fashion Tech Week, Pioneer Mode and FAAR, always with the goal of empowering those who envision a better way forward and providing them the community, skills and tools to build it.
Marci Walker joined Lawyers for the Creative Arts in 2004. She has advised clients in all areas of art and entertainment, including intellectual property protection for motion pictures, visual arts, music, dance and literary works. Ms. Walker plans LCA's educational programming and lectures widely on copyright law, including rights acquisition and transfer and overall best practices to manage copyright interests in creative works. She is the former Chair of the Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts Division of the ABA Forum on the Entertainment and Sports Industries, the Chicago Bar Association's Media and Entertainment Committee, the Intellectual Property Committee of College Art Association, and the Fiscal Sponsorship Committee of Independent Features Project Midwest (IFP/ Chicago). Ms. Walker is an adjunct faculty member at DePaul University and Columbia College Chicago where she teaches entertainment law courses. She formerly taught an ABA certified course on intellectual property at Harper College and student taught a legal ethics course at her alma mater, the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Ms. Walker earned her juris doctorate from Loyola University Chicago School of Law and is licensed to practice law in the state of Illinois and in the United States District Courts for the Northern District of Illinois.
Mark Jeffery is a Chicago based performance/installation artist, curator and educator at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Since 1993, Mark Jeffery has developed unconventional collaborations with visual artists, scholars, video artists, sound artists, new media and code artists, dancers, choreographers, curators, and writers. He is co-founder (2012-) and choreographer of the arts collective ATOM-r (Anatomical Theatres of Mixed Reality. He is curator of the IN>TIME performance series hosted by multiple venues in Chicago. Mark was a former member of the internationally renowned Goat Island Performance Group from 1996-2009. Image: Documentation from a recent performance at the Graham Foundation with ATOM-r, Kjell Theøry. Image credit: Grace Duval.
Nikki Patin is the Community Arts Engagement Manager for Arts + Public Life at the University of Chicago. Featured in The Guardian, Chicago Tribune and on HBO, WBEZ and WGN, Chicago native Nikki Patin has been writing, performing, educating and community organizing for almost 15 years. She has taught hundreds of workshops on spoken word, body image and interpersonal violence. Recently, she addressed the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland on behalf of Black women survivors of sexual violence. Nikki Patin holds an MFA in Creative Non-Fiction from the University of Southern Maine.
Patrice N. Perkins is the founder of Creative Genius Law®, a business and intellectual property law firm and strategic legal partner exclusively for creative entrepreneurs, innovators, and change agents. They are game changers looking to impact the world in creative ways. Patrice’s mission is to encourage clients to tap into the unrealized revenue potential of their intellectual property while using the law to protect and nurture creativity rather than stifling it. She develops legal strategies and provides counsel in the areas of business law, contracts and negotiation, intellectual property (trademarks and copyrights), social media, advertising, and marketing law. She’s been recognized by the American Bar Association as a “Legal Rebel” for being a leading innovator in the legal industry. She’s previously spoken at Chicago Creative Expo, Self Employment in the Arts Conference, Chicago Urban League, Chicago Artists Coalition, Blogging While Brown, Alt Design Summit, BlogHer, Eat Write Retreat, and AVVO Lawyernomics to name a few. She's appeared in popular media and blogs including FORTUNE, NBC, Women 2.0, Design Sponge, Young, Fabulous & Self-Employed, Carol Roth and is a member of the Board of Directors for the Chicago Artists Coalition. Patrice publishes Creative Genius Society, a business and law blog, and is the creator of the Quit Kit, a strategic planning system to help creative entrepreneurs ditch their 9 to 5 for full-time entrepreneurship. You can follow Patrice on Twitter and Instagram @creative_esq. Patrice will be a guest speaker for Know Your Rights: A Legal Toolkit for Creative Producers on March 5, 2019.
Patti Gilford is the founder of Patti Gilford Fine Arts (*PGFA*). She is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design and has over 35 years of experience as a working artist, gallery director and art advisor to major corporations, public institutions and individuals.
Artist-scholar Rashayla Marie Brown manages an “undisciplinary” studio practice through photography, performance, writing, installation, and video. A lifelong nomad who moved 24 times, she began her practice as a poet in London. An Artadia and Franklin Furnace grantee, RMB has presented work internationally at Tate Modern, London; Krabbesholm Højskole, Copenhagen; Turbine Hall, Johannesburg; and in commissions at Bemis Contemporary, Omaha; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; Museum of the African Diaspora, San Francisco; Rhodes College, Memphis; among others. She holds degrees from Northwestern University, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and Yale University.
Rebecca Parker is interested in creating opportunities for artists to engage with communities that support and grow their practice. As Program Director at Ox-Bow School of Art and Artists’ Residency, she works with faculty, visiting artists, artists-in-residence, and students to create programming that connects artists to the landscape of Ox-Bow as a site for experimentation and community. As an arts administrator, she has worked in a number of capacities, including commissioning public art and working with university admissions. Prior to moving to Chicago, she served as the grants manager for the Winston-Salem and Forsyth Arts Council. She received her Master of Fine Arts, with a performance focus, from the University of Connecticut, and her BFA in ceramics from Middle Tennessee State University. She continues her practice as an artist and has exhibited at the CAC, Chicago, IL; ArtSpace, New Haven, CT; Elsewhere Collaborative, Greensboro, NC; and Chasama, NY.
Sarah Lombardi has been in the accounting and finance field for over 15 years and holds a Master of Science degree in Accounting. She has touched over 100 organization's financials in some capacity over that time frame. As you can imagine, she has been involved in almost any financial scenario you can think of and has loved every minute of it. About 2 years into her career, she found yoga and became a certified yoga instructor. This fueled her passion around health and wellness and helping others lead a healthier lifestyle. One commonality she discovered to hold true is that money stresses people out and stress causes people to be unhappy and unhealthy. Through the tools she has developed in both her professional career and her yoga career, a sweet spot was created for helping businesses and individuals organize their finances in a calming, low stress and profitable manner. Hence the birth of Healthy Financial Solutions!
Sonnenzimmer is the collective output of Nick Butcher and Nadine Nakanishi. Their work explores the contemporary and historic impact of the graphic impulse through publishing, exhibitions, graphic design, and performance. While the duo works in an array of media, their focus is on triangulating a deeper understanding of the role of graphic expression at large. In addition to their self-driven work, Sonnenzimmer actively engages in commissioned projects aiming to reshape preconceived notions of the graphic arts. Their work has been shown in The United States, Brazil, China, and Europe; with recent solo exhibitions at Vebikus Kunsthalle Schaffhausen, Switzerland, and Hatch Show Print in Nashville, Tennessee. They lead lectures & workshops in academic and commercial settings, including past visits to Aalto University, Finland; California Institute for the Arts, CA; Columbia College Chicago, IL; Cranbrook Art Academy, MI; Facebook Analog Research Laboratory, CA; Grafisches Forum Zürich, Switzerland; The Art Institute of Chicago, IL; Minneapolis College of Art and Design, MN; Pratt Institute, NY; Yale School of Art, CT.
Verónica Casado Hernández is a visual artist with a background in fiber and a cultural historian. Her work includes installation and performance in which she investigates constructions of identity in western nineteenth and twentieth century, and their outcomes and parallels in the present day. She has shown her work and lectured internationally. Casado Hernandez is a founding member of the researched-based feminist art collective The Great Social Evil and a collaborator of the Protest Banner Lending Library. She earned her Bachelors of Fine Arts in Fibers and Culture and Politics at The Maryland Institute College of Art and her Master of Fine Arts in Studio from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She is currently a HATCH Resident at the Chicago Artists Coalition.
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