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In my studio,  I usually think in terms of  mini-narratives and metaphors. The formal elements come later, after I begin to work on an image.Leaving specific information out helps make the images more open to the viewer. The finished image may not have the same associations or meanings for viewers, but it might.

Recently I've been venturing into Textille Art, using print processes on cotton rather than paper. This has been really fun, I'm interested to see how far I can go with it--
I was diagnosed with talent at an early age, and was always the artist of the family. I was proud of my draftsmanship, but as time went by, I realized that I couldn't take credit for my talent; it was a gift. What I do take credit for is the effort I have made through the years to master my craft, those areas of printmaking that I focus on: mezzotint, etching and linoleum. My preferred subject is the human face and figure.  I am fascinated by faces, and in trying to capture them I increase my understanding of what it means to be human.
Brown, Karen L.
As a child I focused on the small, often unobserved miracles of nature: the multi hues of a river washed stone, the movement of a sea urchin being gently stroked by the ocean current and the brilliant yellow stamen of a wild violet. These and many more wonders of nature were my entertainment. It is no surprise I choose printmaking and encaustics, as both translate well into my artistic vision. Printmaking gives me structure and encaustics force me to experiment. I relish the challenge of these ancient techniques and am delighted when I can use both in one creative piece.
 According to my mom,  I was found drawing naked women after a visit to a museum at the age of five. When mom asked why I  replied, "That’s what you’ve got to do to get into a museum”. Still working often with the nude in large monotypes, I  work valiantly towards  my museum goal.

Lately,  l find myself moving away from the figure exploring rhythm, texture color and pattern. I integrate monotype, relief and pronto plate techniques with collage, watercolor, metal leaf, sewing and paper cutting to create mixed media pieces and accordion books.  Some piece are abstractions while the more playful images with animals are inspired by my work as a childrens' art teacher.  A year spent in Southeast Asia also served as a source of inspiration. 

I hold a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Texas in Art Education and haved worked for many years as an art educator in both classrooms and art institutions. I was a guest artist at Taller Grafica Rueca in Mazatlan and I animated segments for Richard Linklater’s feature, "Waking Life”.  My work has been shown  in various group shows in North America and I have been featured in two person shows in Canada. Solo shows include the  Carriage House Gallery and PINK in Austin, Texas.

When not rolling a brayer, I might be found with a guitar in hand, writing songs, performing or just having a hootennany with friends.

Living out in the country has been a major influence on my present work, and of late, the recent drought here in Texas and what it has done to our pond has been the major source in these recent works.  Our pond has dried up twice this summer. The first time it dried up was the most devastating as we lost all our fish, frogs, turtles and many more organisms that help sustain life around the pond.  The many birds, reptiles, and animals that frequent the pond have had their lives severely altered.  As of now, after a recent rain a few weeks ago, we have water again but it will take years to form the ecosystem that existed before the drought.

In other works, the content is about the cycle of life, a kind of eternal dance that not only starts and ends and repeats, but leaves echoes that remain for a time. The images and diagrams of the moon are the most prominent recurring objects in my work and represent for me the cycles of the seasons and the renewal of life.  Other recurring images are shells that leave the negative imprint of the living matter they once contained, spiral galaxies that suggest creation, evolution, and the gravitational pull into the center and the unknown, and additional visual parallels for the cyclic nature of birth, death, and regeneration such as plants, bees, and microscopic organisms.

Throughout my schooling and career, I have been interested in how the parts work together to create the whole. As a printmaker, the processes alone fulfill this constant need to build, whether assembling stencils or building onto plates. Combined with my imagery pulled from family traditions of quilting, I hope to create a body of work that inspires an appreciation of feminine and feminist representations in art and art-making.

I create abstract woodblock prints to investigate and respond to the visual, tactile, and experiential world. I make these works by carving marks into wood that is then rolled with ink. The inked impression is transferred to paper by rubbing with a wooden spoon. Each layer of color builds a surface that is both planned and accidental. Printing and carving occur in stages—I cut back into the same blocks over and over again through time. In this way, as the print is created, the blocks are destroyed. I view the process of relief printmaking as a metaphor exposing the gaps between the physical, the imagined, and what we perceive as the "seen” reality.

My imagery resides in this gap between visual impressions and the conjuring of names or descriptions. This gap is what separates the familiar from the unknown and is where I try to situate each work. I juxtapose the sensual and visceral against the spiritual and symbolic and create realms where the sacred and profane exist in tandem. To accomplish this, I obfuscate, deconstruct, reassemble, and transform visuals culled from my perceptions of both organic and man-made environments, dreams, memories, and learned or imagined myths.

I aim to discover images that deliberately set on edge the associations we bring to forms. In other words, I use forms that might mean many things, have several names, or be both whimsical and terribly dark at the same time. Since the process of constructing narratives is fluid, active, and personal, each viewer completes the work, bringing his or her own associations to bear in how to decipher each piece. It is in this open space—this stream of ever-changing perceptions, before mental categorization and verbal assignments—where we discover how to bridge what we see with what we know.

I create dreamy, layered landscapes that evoke the history and memory of place. My recent work is based on travels in the Middle East, where competing historical narratives and cultural memories shape modern life. These works portray a shared landscape, repeatedly divided, and the beauty of a land we only hear about in terms of blood shed. Beneath the divisions of religion, culture or nationality we construct, lies the common human experience.

I was living in New Mexico when a fortuitous requirement of printmaking coursework for my graduate program in art therapy led me to expression in another medium. Since that time I have been exploring printmaking and creating soft ethereal-like inspirational images. The circle or circular movement can often be seen in my artwork. The circle is a universal symbol with extensive meaning--a continuous symbol that has no beginning and no end. Throughout my life I have created circles, benefiting from the sense of comfort, peace, and total integration.

How I feel when I am making art is perfectly described in what Don Miguel Ruiz says: "When you are in your creation and you are doing what you love to do, you become what you really are again. You are not thinking in that moment; you are expressing.” I love being in that space where I am not really thinking, I am expressing what I am feeling inside. One could say that I make art to please the eye and touch the soul.

Melanie is an experimental media artist and printmaker with an affinity for color and texture. Her work embodies the historically iconic and metaphorically rich and expressive imagery of the horse. Her focus is not necessarily upon the physical aspect of individual breeds, but upon the unique and universal attributes of legendary equus and its dialog with the human spirit.

Memory, location and nature, the inspirations 
Texture and pattern, the fascination
Printmaking, the adventure.
The dance of the brush, the roll of the brayer, the work in progress;  soul satisfying!
My etchings explore the expressions of the various roles that women portray. The mystery, the glamour and the spirit of the female consciousness. Symbols of patience, nurturer and healer celebrating the mystical nature of the feminine spirit.

Most of my art career, I have spent painting. I was introduced to the printing process at Flatbed Press in Austin, Texas. I was taken in by the simplicity of the lines and the clarity of the images. I fell in love with the process or what I call the ritual. The dance between the artist, the copper plate and the flatbed press.

Most of my Etchings are created on recycled copper. Some pieces have scratches and impurities before I start but this just adds a uniqueness of working with recycled materials.

Growing up in the desert of New Mexico, I thought everyone was an artist. I was always exposed to local art and artists that came to New Mexico to study. Art is the vehicle I use to express the images that spring from my dreams and meditation, creating strength and health which can be drawn upon to bring greater happiness and contentment to our lives. Through my art, I am constantly trying to tap those hidden resources and communicate to the viewer of my work some of those feelings of joy and expansion.
Figurative work, always a passion, has become the focus of this recent body of work. Combined with mythology, the use of symbols and mythological creatures such as mermaids, I create a classical context for contemporary treatments of the figure.

I am drawn to many aspects of printmaking. I’ve always liked texture and variety of printmaking papers, the smell and colors of the inks, and the fact that you can do multiples. There is something about the transformation that happens from the plate to the paper and the effects you can get that’s just magical.
Rymer Brucker, Julia
In paintings, prints and drawings, I focus on the abstraction of biological and physical forms. Source imagery is derived from x-ray crystallography, microscopes, medical imaging technology, and particle accelerators.

The use of abstraction of these sources explores life and its building blocks, while also probing ethereal concepts like action, movement, and structure through the intersection of art and science. Scientific imagery is obscured in a veil of color and form and personal interpretation emerges.

Reminiscent of the unpredictability in a scientific experiment, my outcome is often unknown to me, and is discovered only at the end of my process, echoing the mystery and the sublime experience of the physical world.
I'm fascinated with the printmaking process, especially the delightful surprises that come the first time a new plate is pulled. I gravitate towards the textural effects of collagraphs finding platemaking is only limited by one’s imagination. My work has been exhibited throughout the US but primarily in Texas, with a second solo show on the books for Chicago in 2015.

When in the print studio, I most frequently create Monotypes/Monoprints and, because of the freedom this process allows, these prints become wonderful partners to my paintings.

I enjoy blending narrative and portraiture (and sometimes a bit of humor) into my works. My style is influenced by the German Expressionists and the American Social Realists.

My work has been collected and shown internationally and nationally.

Smith, Nicole
I have been ever enthralled with surrealist imagery, religious art as well as more classical styles of figurative work. I have a keen interest in the fashions of the early to mid 20th century and many of my subjects reference this. I don't really see it as sentimentality but more as a removal of the past. I suppose it is my aquarian nature to not even be in the present moment but to have an ever constant vision of the future.

My extremely vivid dreams and the images and ideas from my dreams I use in my work to convey a message that can be interpreted in a variety of ways in the same manner one may interpret a dream.

Much of my work is about my interpretation of the human experience, relationships between individuals and the objects that surround them and inevitably how those objects affect their lives.

I view my work as a collaboration with nature. I make handmade paper with plant materials from my garden. My photographs are also mainly taken in my garden or on hikes. I am fascinated with symbols and intricate patterns that, to me, give glimpses and insights into to the great mysteries of life.

Exhibition Details
The Gallery at the J
Chair: Cathy Savage
Event Deadline
The deadline for this event (11/1/2011) has passed.
Photo Gallery