Visual Artists' Galleries (Click on image to enter each Visual Artist's Gallery.)
Carlis Chee/Navajo Artist
Carlis M. Chee was born into the Navajo Nation in Arizona and his art depicts the beauty of his people and culture. His works are a merging of balance and tranquility and they reflect traditional Navajo images, together with the elegance and simplicity of the Japanese art form. Some pieces focus on a stylized female figure, adorned with a colorful blanket and turquoise earring, representing the Navajo People. The facial features are tightly painted and finely chiseled by intricate brush strokes bringing an elegant, yet seductive, quality to the finished painting. Chee is a a self-taught painter, but did receive formal instruction at Kearney State College in Nebraska. He also worked as an artist in residence at the Maxwell Public Schools. While attending Kearney State College, he became intrigued by Japanese art and started incorporating his passion into his work. Chee also studied at the Institute of American Indian Art in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where he owns and operates his own art gallery. Chee's current body of work is a progression from a traditional tight geometric obsession into more loosely painted landscapes, still life and some nude images, allowing him to be more spontaneous in his work. Chee says: "When I work, there is a romance between my art and myself. My work is dedicated to my grandmother, Anna Jean, who taught me my native language and raised me in the atmosphere of a traditional home."
Stephanie Gray is a process arts facilitator, Creative Self - Discoverist, writer and artist and is co-founder of Creative Nectar Studio. Stephanie has been process painting since 1996 and facilitating since 2009. She has been a volunteer artist for the "Memories in the Making" program of the Heartland chapter of The Alzheimer's Association, an Americorp VISTA volunteer at VanGo Mobile Arts, a studio assistant to Sarah Oblinger of Paint or Die Studio, and a resident artist and volunteer at VALA Gallery in Mission, KS. I personally believe we are in the beginning stages of a great transition, an evolution affecting us as individuals and our personal belief systems as well as our society and societal structures. Transitions are very often messy and painful like the birthing process itself. Things may initially appear chaotic and feel unfamiliar and confusing. Naturally, there will be expansion and contraction as the old begins to die away and the new slowly takes its place. I also believe that the only way through this is to go within and become curious about who it is that dwells in the innermost levels of my being. Getting to know my most sacred and powerful self, the one who holds abundant wisdom and is able to discern truth, will provide me what is needed in these times. Creativity is my tool to go within.
Hiba Jameel processes her world through painting. Whether it is to fulfill her civic duty by criticizing the political climate or to express the sensitive sensual facets of life through painting flayed beautiful nude figures. Or painting to heal from her childhood wounds and engage others in art making via conducting interactive art events. You will see little glass cups decorated with gold in her work, along with some mushroom clouds, gold leaf and lots of nude figures. Hiba uses the traditional tea cup she grew up drinking from as a symbol of her heritage and as a part of her identity. She processes the world around her by painting her experiences, using distinct brush strokes, rich color palate, and exaggerated figures. Her paintings have a luster finish, gold and luminescent hues. The human figure to her is a body of language that she can use to interpret experiences and convey messages. ?"I am a self-taught painter who identifies as a multidisciplinary artist, I paint, program and lead community-based interactive art events. I enjoy involving the public in art making as it elevates our culture and introduces a novel dialogue especially when it is discussing controversial topics. At the age of 8, life forced me to explore the idea of hope through pain and fear. I found it by making sculptures using shrapnel I found on the streets of Baghdad near my house. Throughout my childhood and well into my adolescence I experienced a lot of disorder in the form of trauma, turmoil, fear, abandonment, instability, escape, terror, religious and traditional restrictions, cancer, death, and grief. Despite all of this, as an adult, I arrived to some form of peace and order. I demonstrate this concept by deconstructing the traditional rules of painting and by creating order from disorder. I paint like I sketch - I start with large areas first, prioritizing form, size or lighting. I make many lines and images until they are combined into one idea. Shadows vary with the intensity of feelings in my work. I use large amounts of paint, and layers to arrive to the core of my intention. Each painting is a theatrical scene that uses color, lines, disorder to find symmetry, normalcy and ultimately arriving to a cohesive order."
Ali Nura/Iraqi American Artist and Poet
Artist Statement: The major themes found throughout my artwork are the alienation, dichotomy, and fragmentation of identity that encapsulate the refugee experience. Being a refugee means being unseen where it matters, giving the impression that the displaced, while conspicuous, are in fact invisible. Figures are silhouetted and facing away from the observer, faces are fractured and bursting apart, and the skeletal is interpolated with the surreal contained within. Dead languages feature heavily, symbolizing the sense of isolation felt in being of two countries but belonging to neither, of feeling perpetually stranded in between. My stylistic variance is the physical manifestation of the nuanced tension arising from the duality in all things.
Polly Alice McCann
POLLY ALICE Artist & Poet POLLY ALICE McCann author, artist, creates soft sculptural oil paintings with imperfect stitching to demonstrate the improvisational nature of relationships. Her figurative work is based on the #timesup movement illustrating women's voices on human rights. She calls her narrative lyrical poetry "time capsule poems". "Kinlight", her first collection of poetry and its companion book, "Tea with Alice"- speak with a uniquely deep-rooted voice to explore faith, loss, and the measures taken to become visible: I will not forget, she writes. "I am woman; all things began in me." Her subtle imagery searches the bone and marrow of a woman living in today's America. Her third collection "Puss 'N Bootes: Dark Poems" will be released in May of 2020. She graduated with her BA in Studio Art from Messiah College and her MFA in Writing from Hamline University. As a Kansas City artist and art catalyst, her art shows internationally and has been published in several US newspapers and magazines, most recently Rattle Magazine. Polly is also a poet and the founder of Flying Ketchup Press. She has been published internationally in journals such as Naugatuck River Review, arc24, and 365 days. She credits much of her creative work to her research on the creative subconscious which won her the 2014 Ernest Hartmann award from the International Association for the Study of Dreams from Berkley CA.
"Visual art is a language that has no words. It speaks through form and color, whispering it's mysterious secrets to the heart." Mary Pettet Mary's works are whimsical and mysterious, drawing imagery from the world of dreams and mythology. Her acrylic and mixed media paintings contain vibrant and colorful images often depicting flowers, birds and the feminine form. Mary is a native of Missouri and lives with her husband Tim in the historic Hyde Park neighborhood of Kansas City.
Zigmunds Priede/Latvian American Artist
"Many of my works begin with some kind of printing process and develop through the use of collage, paint, and other mediums. The presence of hand, automatism and fortuitous happenings are all significant ingredients. The works are abstract with emphasis on form as foundation and meaning. They form relationships augmented with semiotic associations that need not have specific or exclusive meaning. Diverse viewer interpretations of these associations become an accumulation of meanings over time. Because these works evolve over a prolonged period of time that may extend many years, I choose to call them 'aggregate time works'. They represent certain moments of a creative process that is forever ongoing, like the interpretive process."
"Penny's work reflects her open mind and heart. She creates expansive spaces through shape and color which entice and enfold the viewer. Her work has the quality of speaking to both a macro view of the universe and a micro study of specific times, places and emotions. Her work gives us a safe place to contemplate the harder questions, doubts and hopes that define our humanity." ~Bridget Stewart
Persephone Winter is a Painter, Photographer and a stay at home, Mom. She is originally from Kansas City. She lives in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania with her Person and their young Son. She fell in love with photography at the age of 9 and began painting at the age of 13. Battling anxiety her entire life, she discovered quickly that expressing and producing her imagination on Canvas through creative ways is a healthy release and meditation for her. She is smitten with Abstract Art and feels pure joy when painting, preparing photo shoots and experiencing other Artist' work. She is also the Founder of Fix(H)ate On Change, an online group focused on positivity and solutions for human and planetary health.
Lynda J. Leonard
Lynda J Leonard Matter Manipulator aka Artist I have to thank Mike Dooley for the term, 'Matter Manipulator', which fits well with what I am doing creatively. I love the magic that happens when found objects/disparate items are brought together in ways not thought of before. I consider these found treasures gifts from the universe, later mixing them with other discarded/saved treasures to give new life and meaning to what others think of as trash. The history, color, shape, texture of these items tell a story that enhances and brings transformation, new life and meaning to items discarded by others. As a mixed media artist, my goal is to create works that reflect our history, layers of experience, connections, puzzles, lessons...the mystery and magic of transformation in life. My work is about places in the heart, places in the mind, spaces in time. The theme 'continuum of winds, circles, patterns, change' symbolizes the recurring issues, problems, lessons, and experiences that we find ourselves going through, individually and collectively, as we go through life. This theme relates to the continuous river of life events, that I see symbolically as winds, circles, patterns, change depicted with the use of geometric symbols as pyramids, circles, and spirals.
Bio “My art is something that emerges from within me, an inner desire to create and express myself.” Jill Huxtable’s work is full of color and texture that keep your eye looking for more. She is a Kansas City based artist that grew up in Lawrence, KS and has been making art since early childhood. She took advantage of the excellent art department in the school system there, and has won many awards over the years. She shows in numerous galleries and art shows around the Kansas City area and beyond. In addition takes advantage of the many art classes and workshops available as her schedule permits. “Always a work in progress, as is my life”. Being creative is not just a part of her core being, but also a form of escape. Jill is truly a mixed media artist. Instead of focusing on one main medium, she chooses the combination of media which will best accomplish her vision of the finished piece. The process may vary from piece to piece, yet her style is fluid. In addition to working with many types of paint and drawing media, she likes to work on a variety of surfaces, often creating texture, incorporating found objects, and working in layers to create a sense of depth and interest that draws the viewer in for closer examination. Her artwork finds inspiration in nature and the beauty of the human form.