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Archive for the ‘Zoom Group’ Category

Before heading to the Fourth of July holiday with its extended weekend, we were thrilled to have another visiting artist!  Suzi Zimmerer, a professional artist in the Louisville community,  graciously shared her work among our circle of artists.

Suzi creates amazing images by cutting paper.  Best of all, her imagination is open and witty which came through the many examples of her art she brought to us.  Here she holds whimsical designs that seem to be part animal/machine hybrids.  Suzi is an accomplished draughtsman and much of her art is rooted in the language of drawing.  Her artwork has been exhibited all over the United States.

This is a simpler example of one of Suzi’s papercuts which seems related to the imagery found in Mexican folk art.  Suzi and her partner, Keith Kleespies once lived in Sante Fe before moving to Louisville.  One of the StudioWorks artists, Natalie Lanier,  especially responded to Suzi’s elegant images of stylish women.  After the presentation, Natalie was inspired to  create a cut paper artwork of her own!  Another StudioWorks artist, Marie Vample, really connected with one of Suzi’s collage sketchbooks.

Bradley Bohannon fell in love with the masks that Suzi made and brought along and he entertained us with his Godzilla impression!  I like that you can see his big smile despite having most of his face hidden.  A couple of weeks a go, Bradley made a very nice ceramic mask of his own.

After her informal presentation, Suzi made the rounds to see what the StudioWorks artists were currently making.  Carol showed both Suzi and Keith her newest commissions in progress.  Carol is doing two portraits of beloved pet dogs in embroidery.  Her needle work keeps getting better and better!

Julie Baldyga has been working on a series of oil pastels featuring electrical workers from around the world repairing transformers.  Here Julie shows Suzi something about her own amazing art making techniques.

This is an example of Julie’s series which highlights electrical workers switching out ceramic insulators while standing on substations?  Talking with Julie…we all learn more about electrical equipment which she likes to research on the internet.  In the following image, you can tell the workers are from India because the one on the right has a red dot on his forehead.

Other new pieces in the gallery include a nice acrylic painting on paper that Chimel Ford painted.  The subject speaks for itself!  Of late, Chimel has been on a productive and positive roll.

StudioWorks keeps growing with the addition of new artists.  Among are newest is Alexander B. who painted this scene of two people standing near a house.  Alexander likes to script the dialog and action in some of his pictures.  In this painting all his words have been covered over with paint.  We will try to get this young artist to leave a bit of the words visible to give viewers a better sense for what is happening.  Alexander also loves trains and so we expect to see some of that imagery popping up every now and then.  The staff loves the way he presents the human figure.

Bradley created a very entertaining color pencil and crayon piece inspired by the newest Green Lantern movie.  In his drawing, the staff and artists of StudioWorks have all been transformed into super heroes ready to do battle with all that threaten our fair planet.  Nobody better mess with us!

StudioWorks would like to thank Suzi Zimmerer for sharing her art work and time with us.  It is through these visiting artist encounters that our artists receive so much positive reinforcement and underscores how universal creativity can be.  We are lucky to live in such a vibrant and giving art community that exists in Louisville and look forward to other visiting artist presentations.  Before ending, the StudioWorks artists have had a series of collaborative in-house projects going on and one of them features lots of cut up fabric being braided and knotted together.  So far, Terry and Rebecca have gotten into this the most, but other artists have contributed as well.  What this fabric will become is still being decided and that is the exciting and creative part.  We will keep you posted on its progress!  Thanks for stopping by!!

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StudioWorks was honored to receive a visit from teachers from the Jefferson County Public School System.  Zoom Group’s Client Services Coordinator Sallie Read introduced the StudioWorks concept to these educators that were touring different sites within the city.  The tour was to provide information on the additional services available to graduating students once they leave high school.  In the foreground, a large painting by Dorcas Kempf-Fluhr awaits assembly.

The visiting educators all expressed how nice our studio/gallery is and Sallie did a great job of introducing the staff and clients to the group.  Our artists were delighted to have such a big audience to share their art with.  Here Jeremy Smith is holding “court” by his work area.

It’s very possible that some of the students these teachers work with may become our clients in future years.  Presently, we have a great bunch of artists that bring a lot of variety and vitality to what they make.  We have been following a special embroidery project that Carol Thorp has been working on and its now finished except for the framing.  This is how it began along with the working drawing that Carol based this piece on.

Carol had previously finished two needle-work pieces that featured dogs laying on colorful rugs and she adapted the rug idea for her latest art work.   Here is the artist with her giraffe in a different stage of completion.

Carol surprised us by adding a row of flowers around the completed giraffe.  I think the consensus among the staff is that this is one of Carol’s best pieces so far and her most ambitious needle work project yet.  Of course, she has lots of ideas for future work and I believe she has a couple of commissions too!  Here is a look at the whole work  and I’ll end this post with a detail of the giraffe’s head.  Thanks for visiting!

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It’s been a great week or so at StudioWorks.  Lots of wonderful art is being produced, shown, and sold.  There is a palpable feeling of accomplishment in the air of our studio/gallery that extends even beyond the walls of our building.  Recently, three of our artists…Matthew, Terry, and Nancy won medals for swimming at a meet held in Richmond, Kentucky.  Congratulations to all three and here is a nice picture with some of the loot hanging around their necks!

Currently, there is an especially nice showing of paintings by Madison Cawein at the B. Deemer Gallery.  Marie, Julie, and Dorothy really enjoyed the outing and loved the skill on display.  Check out Julie’s new glasses!

The staff at this gallery has been very welcoming and we love the variety in their shows.  We learn so much by looking at the work of fellow artists.  We have also been lucky in attracting another wonderful volunteer and her name is Katie Hall.

Katie recently completed a her BFA degree from the well-regarded Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York.  She will be working with us this summer and is interested in pursuing a graduate degree in art therapy.  As it turns out StudioWorks provides a good opportunity for her to get additional experience in working with people with special needs.  Katie dived right in and has been very helpful in the studio.  As she is finding out…we focus primarily on abilities and the expressive potential of each individual.  Welcome aboard!

We also had a guest visitor to StudioWorks recently!  Sally Hardman who once attended our program dropped by to see old friends including Eric!  It was great to see her again and this was her first chance to see our new studio.  Sally was a big part of our 4th Street gallery.

Matthew Torstrick is among the fresh new faces at StudioWorks.  Matthew has been hitting a groove of late with his wonderfully colorful crayon drawings.  He finds inspiration for his abstractions from popular culture.    Here is a better view of the drawing he was working on in the above image.  It’s based on the latest version of the movie “Tron”.  What I love in addition to this drawing’s large size is the way Matthew burnished his shapes until they literally shine when the light hits them!

I began this post with a prismacolor drawing by Artis Appling who has also been making inspired art.  The other day, the StudioWorks staff were amazed when Artis completed fifteen new and colorful drawings in a single day!  We think Artis has a gift for color and composition and is evolving his own vocabulary of symbols he likes to work with.  Here are two new drawings including one that repeats his signature in interesting and decorative ways.  Artis frequently draws on both sides of his artworks.

Let’s keep the color flowing and here is Natalie Lanier’s latest.  I’m not sure of the title and so I call it “Lady with a Peacock”.  Natalie’s art has style!

Julie Baldyga’s most recent oil pastel also qualifies for this colorfest!  This is the latest in a series that features a toy model airplane and a glimpse of heaven with its pink arbor of flowers.

Eric Huggins is one of our best draughtsman.  The tip of his pencil can be so clean and precise.  This is a large study of different dog breeds where Eric is experimenting with using non-naturalistic colors.  We have many dog lovers in our group who especially like this work.

Lastly, I want to show a painting by Dorothy Elois Hawkins that recently was purchased.  Congratulations Dorothy!  By now this painting is in the Los Angeles area.  This is only one of many StudioWorks pieces that are now in collections across the United States.  Who doesn’t love dinosaurs!!  Stay cool and see you next week!

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One of our favorite things to do at StudioWorks is to invite artists in our community to share their art and story in our space.  Keith Kleespies was gracious in accepting our invitation and brought a box full of his art.  Keith is originally from the Cincinnati area and found much early success there before coming to Louisville.  His presentation was informal and our artists were eager to see what would come out of the box next!

Keith’s work is delightful and sophisticated and our artists enjoyed his imagery which is frequently humorous.  At all times Keith’s work is well drawn and designed.  Of late, he has been making gestural drawings and scanning them into the computer which then becomes further manipulated.  Keith shared that he is slowly losing his vision and the computer has become a tool that allows him to continue his art making.  Where his art ends up is usually far from where it began in his process.

Keith is an aficionado of the “Blues” which is evident from the above sculpture.  The Blues is a uniquely American musical form that speaks directly to life’s many experiences.  Keith’s sculpture combines the names of important Blues locations with some of its famous singers and musicians.

Here Jeremy checks out another Kleespies’ original that again acknowledges the Blues and the art of illustration.  Keith is an excellent cartoonist and familiar with that tradition as well.  To be a Blues man is to lead a wandering lifestyle and this is why shoes are such an important image to Keith.

After Keith finished his art presentation with some wonderfully designed graphic pieces in his portfolio…our StudioWorks artists wanted to show him what they have been making!  Here Keith takes in Eric’s latest drawing that is a montage of different dog breeds drawn in various sizes.

Bradley Bohannon couldn’t wait to show Keith his latest entitled “Heros”.  It’s a collage and drawing honoring the brave servicemen that help keep us safe.

We really thank Keith and his wife Suzi for stopping by and sharing a bit of themselves with us.  Suzi is a wonderful artist too and we look forward to her presentation sometime in the near future.  Both of these artists have become good friends and supporters of the StudioWorks mission and that means a lot to us.  To end, here is a small Kleespies’ sculpture made with cardboard, paint, and a pipe cleaner that displays Keith’s wit and humor.  Thanks Keith!!!

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Although the event was last Saturday, I thought I would present a few images from StudioWorks’ participation.  The above image was the poster for the street wide celebration and many businesses and sponsors along Louisville’s famous Bardstown Road that joined in.  Our thanks to the Highland Commerce Guild for organizing such a fun event.

It is an important part of Zoom Group’s and thus StudioWorks’ mission to be involved in the life of the larger community.  Bardstown Bound was a great way for visitors to get to know, check out, and purchase the art made in our studio/gallery.  Since we are currently only open during the business week, this was also an opportunity for folks who wanted to visit us to do so.

The event was a light-hearted gathering and a good excuse to have a sale.  The StudioWorks artists have been so productive that we have art literally everywhere inside the building!  To further entice visitors, we gave an additional 20% off our already modest prices.  Remember at StudioWorks, the artists receive an 80% commission on all sold art works.  Sales were good during Bardstown Bound and nearly every artist sold work.

Although it was a busy Saturday, many of our artists were able to attend and show off their works to friends and visitors.  Here Carol (in the blue pants) talks about her wonderful embroideries framed and hanging on the gallery’s walls.  Our artists are really proud of StudioWorks and have responded by making some of their best works yet.  The space is so nice that we have had many inquiries from other artists with developmental disabilities who would like to have a chance to work with our talented staff and volunteers.

The Zoom Group staff were supportive and came out for our event.  Our gallery used to be around the corner from the main office, but now we are more across town.  The company’s president, Annie Rosenberg-Sattich and her husband Steve enjoyed the many works on view.  Annie remembers when this program was just a few individuals gathered together in the back of a coffee-house.  Look at us now!

It’s always a pleasure to show off a sellection of the works that are made in our space.  We were really pleased by how Marie Vample’s ceramic tile came out.  She did a fine and careful job of glazing its surface.

On another ceramic note, here are Julie Baldyga’s wacky cat family.  This ensemble features a mother cat and her two kittens playing with their electrical fuses!  Julie also made ceramic birds and mice also playing with their respective fuses.  Julie is such a multi-talented and interesting person and artist.  For her, the commitment to art making extends past what she does at StudioWorks.  Natalie Lanier is also a fine artist and here is her latest acrylic on canvas painting.

Natalie entitled this painting “Lady Bug” and I had to photograph it quickly on the gallery’s front carpet because this work found a new home during our Bardstown Bound event!  Congratulations Natalie!!  One final shot and this shows the wonderful tissue pompoms that the staff made as decorations for the event.  They really look good from outside too!  See you next week.

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Glad you asked!  There is always a lot going on and we are happy to share it with you!  If you are on Louisville’s Bardstown Road this Saturday, May 21st between the hours of noon and 8:00pm, please stop by and check out our latest art works.  The other merchants on this cool and busy street will be offering sidewalk sales and StudioWorks will be conducting a 20% off everything sale too.  Since we are not usually open on Saturdays, this is an excellent way to check out our program and new space if you haven’t had the chance to do so already.  We are pleased to be a part of the Bardstown Bound event which is being sponsored by the Highland Commerce Guild and area merchants.  Remember 80% of the sale price goes directly to the artist with the balance returning to the program for materials.  Here’s a recent view with artworks on the floor to be sorted and framed for the sale.

Among the new works being offered for sale are fine examples of embroidery and cross stitch by Carol Thorp and Nancy Anderson.  Both artists are doing their own original designs using needle and thread.  Here are examples of Carol’s work with a few in process shots thrown in for fun.

This is the beginning of “Sleepy-head” being transferred to cloth after starting out as a color pencil drawing.  The rainbow radiating under the sleeping dog is Carol’s version of a rug pattern.

This piece looks great in its frame and will be a part of our sale.  Carol finished a second dog-themed embroidery and this one features a Dalmatian on a colorful rug.  It will also be framed and exhibited.

Fellow studio mate, Nancy Anderson is fond of doing cross stitch which is a craft form her mother taught her many years a go.  By doing cross stitch, Nancy can remember her mom.  When Nancy originally came to us she did commercial patterns exclusively, but now she is doing her own original designs.  Here are two examples that will be on view this Saturday.  Nancy loves abstraction, color and geometric forms!

This is the square-themed cross stitch piece and now the one based on multi-colored circular shapes.  There is a lot of metallic threads in this one.  Nancy is getting faster with each new work she undertakes.

With all the color playing around these circles it reminds me of the iridescent colors you see on soap bubbles!  Nancy has also completed a triangular-themed cross stitch as well.  Within the past month we have been graced by two great helpers.  First, Erin O’Bannon is interning with us for ten weeks.  She attends Jefferson Community and Technical College’s humanities department and has a strong interest in art and healing.  Erin will be with us for about ten weeks and once she completes her internship she has expressed an interest in volunteering.  Thanks Erin!

Our second helper comes to us as a volunteer.  Her name is Mary Margaret Sparks and she is an artist and curator with a special interest in social causes.  Formerly, she worked at the Louisville Visual Art Association and we are lucky she chose to volunteer with us one day a week.  Currently, she is organizing an art exhibition on mountain top coal removal which is an issue of concern in Kentucky.  Here’s a nice image of Mary Margaret in front of the StudioWorks’ front entrance.

Both Erin and Mary Margaret are talented and compassionate and appreciate what we are doing at StudioWorks.  In return, our artists really look forward to working with them.  It’s a reciprocal relationship where everyone learns from each other.  The other “new” news is that the frozen yogurt shop we share our building with has opened!

Sweet CeCe’s Frozen Yogurt and Treats is a Nashville based business and Bill and Betty who operate this franchise also are from the Music City.  It’s great having neighbors who are supportive of our efforts and I’m sure we will support them as well!  Here’s some proof of that.

David and Eric are clearly enjoying their samples.  Here are a few more of the StudioWorks crew giving the many flavors a try and joining in the fun!

I’m sure Sweet CeCe’s will figure into a few blog posts in the future!  To close, here is a hand drawn sign that Bradley Bohannon made to welcome our new neighbors to the Bardstown Road and Eastern Parkway corridor.  Bill and Betsy were nice enough to place his sign behind the counter!  Good luck to Sweet CeCe’s and welcome to Louisville!

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Today is the first Saturday in May which means it’s time for the Kentucky Derby to be run in Louisville!  For this post, I thought it would be fun to show a few of the images that were created by the StudioWorks artists to celebrate this big occasion for our community.

This is Eric Huggins’ acrylic painting on mat board at full view.  In Eric’s vision the race comes down to a stretch run by two worthy horses!  His painting includes a partial view of the famous twin spires of Churchill Downs which are the track’s signature image.

In Dorothy Elois Hawkins’ version which is also made with acrylic paint on mat board…she features three horses.  The ever popular gray-colored horse wins this contest by a head while number 4 takes second place.

Natalie Lanier pictures the race as a run away where one great horse and jockey finishes far a head of the pack.  In her acrylic on canvas painting she also includes the twin spires of our race track, but there is a greater degree of abstraction happening.  The heads of the people in attendance are represented by dots and dashes of paint.

The actual Kentucky Derby race only lasts about two minutes.  In Louisville, however, we also have a two-week long Kentucky Derby Festival that features many fun events and culminates with the actual horse race.  Kicking things off is what is typically billed as the largest fireworks displays in North America.  It’s called Thunder Over Louisville and it’s the subject of a wonderful oil pastel on paper by Julie Baldyga.  In her image she shows our 2nd Street Bridge all ablaze in a tremendous waterfall of color.  Julie has added silver glitter to give her work added sparkle and realism.  The whole festival idea has inspired Julie of late.  This series is being done on sheets of rag  paper measuring 22″ x 30″.

Another Derby Festival event eagerly anticipated is the Great Steamboat Race.  Our Belle of Louisville is the oldest authentic steamboat still plying our country’s major rivers.  Because the Ohio River has been at flood stage during the festival…this year’s race has been postponed until June.  Julie can’t wait that long and so she made up her own boat race.

This amiable couple rendered with oil pastel is Julie’s version of the Balloon Glow derby festival event.  Again, weather permitting, an actual hot air balloon race is conducted.  Because this event has been scratched so many times over the years because of less than ideal conditions, a new event was added to the roster.  The Balloon Glow is a family event that takes place at night.  The balloons don’t actually lift off but their bags are inflated and the night is filled with color and the public can see the great variety in hot air balloons that come to our city.  Julie is also hard at work on another oil pastel of the Bed Race and perhaps the other festival events will follow? In closing, here’s a detail of Julie’s steamboat race art work.  This detail is of the musician who plays the Belle of Louisville’s steam calliope.  May all your horses finish in the money!

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