Delve into Madness 2023!
A delve into the psyche of 25+ world-renowned and up-and-coming artists from around the country.
From February 24th – March 24th, Gallery Forty-Two in Indianapolis will be showcasing works in the style of street, pop, contemporary, and mixed media artworks that encompass the theme of ‘Madness.' Co-curated by gallery director Mary Morgan and Indianapolis artist Will Woodrow, this show boasts the most eclectic, talented, and in-demand artists from all corners of the U.S. and abroad, with a few hand-picked locals.
Meet the Artists
Join us to meet the artists at a reception on March 4th in Downtown Indianapolis for this thought-provoking journey of visual complexity and modern madness.
FREE EVENT | ALL-AGES | DJ | LIBATIONS | MAD ART FOR SALE!
CLICK ON THE IMAGES BELOW TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE ARTISTS!
Get to know the Madness 2023! Artists
These artists are from all over the country and are joining us at Gallery Forty-Two in Indianapolis, IN from February 24-March 24, 2023!
Don't miss out!
For a chance to meet the MADNESS 2023! Artists, join us for the Artist Reception on Saturday, March 4, 2023!
Haitian-born modern artist Guy Stanley Philoche immigrated to Connecticut when he was three. As the middle child of three boys and coming from a family of sports enthusiasts whose passion he didn’t share, Philoche turned to art as his calling. While remaining close to his Haitian Roots, Philoche was the only son to buck his culture’s tradition of the entire family living together and struck out on his own – first attending Paier College of Art and then Yale. He now lives in New York City.
For the past 15 years, Guy Stanley Philoche has been attracting international attention with his work and his impressive roster of solo shows. As an artist, Guy’s palette is strong and sophisticated. His layering technique has created a body of paintings so richly textured that one can hardly hold back from reaching out and touching the canvas. In fact, it is the artist’s intent and wish that the viewer will follow their desire to reach out and feel the different textures of his canvases. His work is for the viewer’s pleasure, to be fully enjoyed from a tactile standpoint, and he has varnished the canvases for exactly that reason.
In 2020, Philoche came to national attention when his efforts to provide assistance and support for struggling artists were highlighted in news sources throughout the United States. Philoche has been featured in publications and media outlets such as Vanity Fair, People, The New York Times, Architectural Digest, CNN, Good Morning America, and more.
Guy Stanley Philoche’s work can be found in galleries, private and corporate collections such as:
Google, New York, NY | Voya Investment Management, New York, NY | Centerstone Investors, New York | Paladin Printing Company, Hartford, CT | Red Alder Investment, New York | First Eagle Fund, New York | Barclay Investment, CAL | First Mark Capital, New York | Davis & Gilbert LLC, New York | Deutsche Bank, New York | Barclay Investments, New York | Vernon Brown & Company, Inc. New York | Merrill Lynch, New York | Light House Investments, New York | SunNova Capital LP., New York | Alexander Suslensky LLC, New York | ABC Windows Incorporated, Inc Chicago IL | Switco LLC, Hamden, CT | Axman Chiropractic Office, Hamden,CT
Tony Pharo is an American artist and painter. Originally from upstate New York, Pharo relocated to California where he now resides in Irvine. It was a life-changing transition to leave the home of his youth behind – as well as the habits he’d pickled up along the way – But now, seven years sober, he can’t imagine leaving California.
Pharo finds inspiration everyday. He describes his work as Neo Expressionist Pop Art, not because it is easily categorized, but because he sees his work as part of a larger movement that has yet to be named. He notes how often a generational talent like Basquiat or George Condo didn’t quite fit in while they were working, only to be recontextualized later.
Like his heroes, Pharo is inspired by the limitless possibility that comes with being free of contemporaneous movements with strict boundaries and defined ideals. This is evident in his expressive, dynamic paintings. On his canvas, the only boundaries are physical. Colors collide, lines run and return in chaotic patterns that suggest a beautiful nihilism. This is art that knows only its own truth, childlike and timeless.
Despite his high-concept outlook on art, Pharo is philosophically an aesthetic populist. Art to Pharo is for everyone. It’s the temporality of life we all share that reveals the benefits of creativity. Because life is short, art benefits those who create and appreciate alike. For Pharo, the benefits are therapeutic, a way to cope with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD). GAD can be at times debilitating. But every time his brush meets the canvas, a flow state is achieved. Ultimately, Pharo’s art is about liberation from the things that hold us back – childhood traumas and conscripted beliefs – and the freedom inherent to moving forward in a creative life. Only painting for a short time, Tony Pharo’s work has already been shown in multiple gallery exhibitions across two states. He’s currently working on numerous pieces, including his largest yet, a 5’x6’ painting exploring the process of inspiration itself.
James has been creating photographic art for over 20 years in a variety of photographic mediums including Wet Plate Collodion, Cyanotype, and Mixed Media. His love of wet plate collodion photography started immediately upon watching, “What Remains” by Sally Mann. She lit the creative fire that got him to go down the rabbit hole of learning how to create art on glass and metal. His love of historical processes combined with his long history of fashion, beauty, and fine art photography, James continues to share his experiences through his art and is always looking down the road to his next adventure.
James has been shooting beauty and fashion for years and mixing his art with his photography work. Bold, striking images are the hallmark of James’ work. Whether it’s a fashion, beauty, or portrait shoot, it starts with his eye for the image and then enters the final phase with his art and post-production.
His Studio is located in the fashionable Hudson Yards Neighborhood on the edge of Hell's Kitchen. The Building was built in 1910 and was originally a Carriage House for horses. He has filled it with select pieces of mid-century modern furniture and equipped it with the latest digital capture equipment and lighting systems.
Covergirl | Amway | MATRIX | DARK & LOVELY | CERAVE’ | CONAIR | Kensie | PALM BAY | International | Macy’s | Tommy Hilfiger | Bandujo Advertising | NYC Department of Health | Norman Ambrose | World Wrestling Entertainment | Jordache | Halston | Mac + Jac | Modelo Especial | Crown Imports | Hennessy | Finesse | Danskin | Nina McLemore | Rainforest Outerwear | Revolucion Advertising Agency | Evins Communications | St. Martins Press | Sharper Image
Marie Claire | Elle | GQ Style TW | Women's Running Magazine | Absurde Magazine | Zink Magazine | Vegas Magazine | Ocean Drive en Espanol | Dress to Kill Magazine | Aventura Magazine | Bal Harbour Magazine | Palm Beach Illustrated | U.S. Polo International | Florida International Magazine | Dorian Magazine | Dark Beauty Magazine
“What I like about the alternative photographic processes is they leave behind the hand of the artist on the image. I love that it’s a tactile experience. At the end of the day, the art that you create is something that you can touch and feel, not pixels on a screen.”
Will Woodrow is largely the driving force behind bringing this impressive group of MADNESS! artists to Indianapolis. It’s due to Woodrow’s recent travels and participation in gallery shows in New York, Connecticut, Chicago, and beyond that resulted in a growing desire to introduce the Indianapolis area to the emerging and world-renowned artists he met along the way. “Indy has never seen a show like this before!” Woodrow explains. Co-curating with Gallery Forty-Two Director, Mary Morgan, they collected the most eclectic, talented, and In-demand artists from all corners of the U.S. and abroad, with a few hand-picked locals.
Indianapolis-based artist; Will Woodrow is a self-taught painter/sculptor, as well as an accomplished recording artist. He works in many mediums including cement, fiberglass, canvas, metal, etc. He has an extensive background as a commercial tradesman which is reflective in his current body of work. Current and future projects place an emphasis on the fabrication and castings from various precious metals.
Works by Will Woodrow can be found throughout the United States in such galleries as Virgil Catherine Gallery (Chicago), D. Colabella Fine Art Gallery (Connecticut), Warbuton Gallery (New York), Hudson Yards Gallery (New York), Gallery Forty-Two (Indianapolis), and in many private collections and public installations.
Bryan Lysaght Jr., known as BLJ the Artist, is a modern contemporary artist with a demonstrated history of working with brands, such as Sound Cloud, Lobos 1707 Tequila, Notoriouss Clothing and more.
Skilled in Business Process, Business Planning, Graphic Art, Advertising, indoor/outdoor Murals and Studio Art.
His works can be found in galleries and private collections. Some of his collector include Fabolous, Chris Brickly, Dave East, Dj Camilo, Dj SpinKing, Dj pretty Lou, Lil Cease, T'yanna Wallace, and by Eric Adams (Mayor of New York, NY), and a permanent 9/11 tribute placement for BK Borough Hall Brooklyn, NY.
BLJ the Artist has participated in these notable exhibits and art shows:
Emerging Artist Showcase at Art Space, Durham, NC Sep. (2016)
Breast Cancer Awareness Showcase West Chelsea New York, NY Oct. (2017)
Featured in Art Apple NYC, New York, NY (2018-2021)
9/11 inspired work acquired by Eric Adams-Brooklyn Borough Hall, Brooklyn, NY Sep. (2021)
Featured in Spectrum showcase, Art Basel Miami, FL Dec. (2021)
Official Sponsor for Leigh Steinberg’s Pre-Super Bowl Party, Sony Pictures Los Angeles, CA (2022)
Art Expo solo booth #334, Pier 36 New York, NY April (2022)
A native of Indiana, Cathy Williams is a contemporary abstract expressionist painter and multidisciplinary artist. First drawings appeared when she was four years old, and her interest in art remained constant throughout her life. Williams enjoyed a successful career working for a large pharmaceutical corporation the majority of her adult life. She took classes from various art institutions after retiring and found her passion for mixed media and abstraction. Williams' love of abstraction in the figurative arts is expressed in a unique way through intuitive gestures and mark-making on canvas or board. Her work has been shown in group shows throughout Indiana, Chicago, and in international online galleries. Cathy has had numerous solo exhibitions and has won many awards in competitive settings. You can find her artwork in private collections throughout the United States. Cathy lives and dreams with her husband, Michael, and their adored English Bulldog, Izzie Blue. She enjoys running, hiking, laughing, daydreaming about Picasso, and drinking an outstanding glass of red Wine.
Honors and Awards Include:
Second Place Award. “Figures of Speech”, Anderson Museum of Art - 2022
Special Merit Award. 8th Annual Intl Abstracts Competition, “Brain Freeze,” Light Space and Time Gallery - 2017
Special Recognition Award. Light Space and Time Gallery, CityScapes Art Intl. Competition, ”Summer in the City" - 2017
Sutton Garten Award for Merit in Sculpture. Indianapolis Art Center, “Zombie Ballerina,” Indianapolis, IN - 2016
Best 3-D Mixed Media/Sculpture. Indianapolis Art Center, “It’s Not Me, It’s You,” Indianapolis, IN - 2016
Merit Award. Hoosier Salon Members Show, “Do No Harm, Take No Crap,” New Harmony, IN - 2016
First Place Award. Birdie Gallery Community Creates, “Zola,” Noblesville, IN - 2015
Honorable Mention. Birdie Gallery Community Creates, “Zadey Zee,” Noblesville, IN - 2014
“I am influenced by the spiritual knowledge I encounter in my own dream worlds, recollections, and the natural world. My paintings examine the contrasts between memory and reality. By weaving together mark making, symbols, and figures, I embrace mystery in my work and hope to engage the audience in conversation.”
“I want my paintings to speak to our universal human desire to feel alive.”
“My art is an assortment of things, a collection of doodads and old thingamabobs.”
“It can be made by way of various techniques and mediums, but the most important part of my art is that it’s a healing journey, somedays a prayer, sometimes simply fun and reflection, and other days deep meditation. I feel that most artists approach their craft this way. So ultimately art becomes the vehicle of this journey, both for the artist, and oftentimes the viewer. As with life, it’s all about how you choose to look at it.”
“After all, what is an art show called Madness without a little healing?”
David Ruggeri has been drawing and painting for as long as he can remember. Having attended art school in the early 1990s and since garnering his PhD, MBA, Master of Economics, and MPH degrees, Ruggeri has used his vast experiences to create and inform his pop art and graffiti-style paintings.
You can often find Ruggeri using bright colors and eye-catching patterns. His bold, colorful pieces take inspiration from graffiti and pop culture and range from whimsical to thought-provoking. A variety of media and techniques are used, such as spray paint, acrylic paint, and ink. Layers and textures are developed to provide additional depth to pieces, so one can barely refrain from reaching out and touching the canvas.
Ruggeri’s work has been exhibited in galleries across the nation, such as New York City, St. Louis, Chicago, Kansas City, and Toronto. Additionally, he has shown his work at nationally recognized art fairs, including those in Miami, Atlanta, Jackson Hole, Ketchum Idaho, St. Louis, and Detroit. His works have been purchased by collectors across the US, as well as in Canada and Europe.
David’s work is a journal of the rhythmic relationship between forces, caught in an eternal dance of light and shadow. Illuminated by brush and ink. A space is hidden from the spectrum, within the eye’s perception. Through his subconscious, a language is unearthed. Interpreting the symphonic nature of the energy which permeates all.
” I compose through tone, texture and form the place of inspiration to the lives of those who dwell amongst. Taking raw materials to construct reality out of that which was once dreamed. Formatting, bending, twisting and torching materials into a new existence.”
OUCH’s first artistic efforts took place in the 90s in St Petersburg, Russia. A decade when the country was passing through the conversion from Communist USSR, the world's largest state-controlled economy into the free market. Simultaneously, the unregulated democratization of social, political, and financial culture took place. This drastic transformation has profoundly affected OUCH’s conceptualization of the world around. Post-Soviet visual space, most notably within the advertising world, was inundated with images of Western lifestyle, cultural icons, and influences. Their messages of affluence, success, and joy de Vivre were outwardly distant to the young street artist. Debilitated by years of state governance and ruthless censorship, Russian artists were struggling with metaphorizing values that were brought about by the new Capitalist reality.
OUCH was one of the first few trailblazers of the Street Art scene in St. Petersburg. His initial output was mainly emotional slogans graffitied on walls of public buildings. Since then, written statements became a vital element of the artist’s work, attesting to his admiration of the power of language, Russian, Spanish, English, French, or Japanese. At that time, OUCH began his search for universal vocabulary, allowing him to portray human values.
In 2001, OUCH relocated to New York. While working towards his degree in Economics, he decided to pursue a full-time artistic career. Starting as a self-taught solitary urban trespasser tagging his name on the walls of New York, OUCH soon gained attention for his posing large-scale murals. In the early 2010’s OUCH expanded his endeavor to clothing, paper, and canvas. OUCH is charmed by the democratic qualities of the pop scene and his ability to deliver a powerful message through symbols of mass culture. The artist interprets vocabulary and iconic subjects to reflect on the nature of human progress and its underlying value.
Gail Buggy is an incredibly high-energy person and her life's work is to craft her energy, passion, vision and joy into works she calls “visual poetry.”
She feels strongly that it's the job of an artist to witness our "impossibly exquisite world" and interpret it in a very personal and meaningful way, capturing and highlighting the breathtaking beauty around us.
Gail is a contemporary artist, Mother, Comedian and Activist living in Ridgefield, CT. Currently a Resident Artist at RPAC Gallery and studios in Ridgefield. She studied Studio Art at the University of New Hampshire and Oxford Brookes University in the UK while pursuing her Bachelor's. She has also taken classes at Silvermine Arts Center in New Canaan and studied photography at the International Center of Photography in Manhattan. Currently, she is a resident Artist at RPAC Arts Center in Ridgefield, CT.
Recent Exhibits Include:
January-February 2023 - “Life Perceived” Katonah Museum Artists Association at Yellow Studio, Cross River New York
January -March 2023 - “Luminosity” RPAC Gallery, Ridgefield, CT
January- March 2022 - “Natural Beauty,” Resident Art Show, RPAC Gallery, Ridgefield, CT
May 2022 - Hudson Yards Gallery Inaugural Show.
November-December 2021 - Resident Artist Show. RPAC Gallery, Ridgefield, CT
September- October 2021 - “BYND LMTS” an exhibition featuring Guy Stanley Philoche and Selected Artists of the Philoche Collection. RPAC Gallery, Ridgefield, CT
Recipient of the Artful Visual Arts Grant June 2022 Ridgefield, CT June-July 2023, Breaking Out of the Box, Guest Artist at RPAC. Paintings and Sculptures representing and celebrating the beauty of diverse female forms as an act of reclamation of space and value.
An emerging new talented artist, Israel Acosta, is widely inspired by both spirituality and life experiences when he creates his works; his life experiences (including dark moments to enlightenment) and his studies of spirituality (including studies of Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, reading from Tao and more) are deeply tied to his art. His works convey universal depth of feeling that one must sit with over time, requiring a wholly individualized experience from viewer to viewer while still connecting us all. Each demands attention by way of passion.
“The intent of my art is to express and elicit emotions in an interactive way. I create art that is meant to be touched. I do this through oil paints that are used in a way that develops texture to the canvas. While I use paint brushes, I also use a variety of other materials to create a unique look and texture, such as bits of cardboard, my hands, paper, and other items that give a more original texture than only brushes. I also want the viewer to interact on an emotional level with the painting. I want the viewer to feel that each painting somehow ties to themselves, someone close to them, or a place they have visited.”
“My work is layered. This layering helps me get my emotions about the painting onto the canvas. I will then begin to use those patterns to develop the image in my mind, showing fields or texture, without actually painting either. These are often awkward, unrealistic poses, or situations, as that is how I think many people feel, even if it is not how they truly move. I use color as a language. I use opposing colors to elicit a bold emotion, or similar colors to give a sense of calm. If I want to be sure the viewer is focused in a particular area, the colors will stand out as opposed to the image that surrounds it.”
“I do not work under preconceived ideas of what a painting should be. I do not want to recreate someone else's vision. I strive to create art that comes from my personal understanding of the world. I paint emotions, and I am not sure there is a way for two individuals who are genuinely expressing themselves through art, to paint emotions in the same way. My work has evolved over the last thirty years into a style that is uniquely my own. It is my mind on canvas.”
Larry Stewart, aka Larrydiditt
I am a Laguna Beach artist born and raised. I have been honing my craft in contemporary-styled artwork for the last decade. Initially a full-time athlete, my notebooks overflowed with artistic creations. Eventually, it came time to hang up the cleats; with my old identity gone, I committed to something new. Soon the hours in the studio surpassed the hours in the ocean, and I knew that it would be this way forever. Years of athletics created an addictive passion for mastering every detail of my creation and finding new sources of inspiration. The only difference is that art is a game I cannot win, so it looks like I have a lifetime of competition ahead of me.
Artist Statement on his Wall Street Bulls series:
The image of the Bull is a common one in art. From classic to more recent interpretations, the Bull represents old interpretations of strength. This allusion to machismo is an obvious one; the Bull is massive, strong, and aggressive. My Wall Street Bulls series attempts to mend this faulty thought that the bull image equates to strength; the changes can be seen as a shedding of the ego,(the hide of the bull) losing the weight of societal expectations and distractions. The painting leaves us with the bones of the beast, who he truly is, and an exterior that is something more novel. The Bull is all it was before, yet, none of what people used to make it out to be.
“When I was in school, my favorite time of day was when I was allowed to draw and paint. The rest of the day my mind would drift off to thoughts of building and creating things in exotic and exciting places. A lot of my teachers called me a dreamer. As I got older, this love never faded and eventually, I found time to pursue my passion.”
“I use metal, mostly steel, as my mediums. Other than clear coats to preserve my pieces, I try not to use any paints, I prefer to use heat and natural materials to achieve a good patina.”
“Though I love recreating people and wildlife in my work, I never really know where my next idea will come from.”
Counterculture artist matthewaaron continues to explore his creative tendencies with a uniquely hands-on approach to high art.
A popular Indianapolis artist, matthewaaron’s “sticks of dynamite” murals can be found throughout Broad Ripple and Indianapolis. Aaron, a student of graffiti and street art as popularized by Banksy in the '90s ultimately found his way to a collaboration with a New York City icon: Al Diaz, partner of a teenage Jean-Michel Basquiat in 1970s graffiti duo SAMO©. Aaron has tagged his dynamite sticks on walls in London, Paris, Los Angeles and Chicago.
matthewarron’s work can be found in galleries and private collections, and always at his studio in the historic Stutz Building in Indianapolis, IN.
Meredith Mulhearn was born in Sayre, PA, but grew up in a small town in New Jersey. Here, she began feverishly creating from the moment she could grasp a crayon. In fact, her pediatrician foretold Mulhearn’s future as an artist, based on her fine motor skills as a young child.
From here, Mulhearn pursued the arts, earning a BA in studio art with a minor in art history, from Wake Forest University and a MA from NYU in art therapy. Mulhearn’s time in New York City significantly influenced her focus on the natural world, as she struggled with its absence in the urban environment. In response, she engaged in intensive study of botanical illustration at the New York Botanical Garden.
In 2019, Mulhearn became a resident artist at RPAC Art Center & Academy, where she continues to practice. Mulhearn’s work is part of multiple private collections, including the Philoche Collection in New York City and Wake Forest University’s General Collection in Winston-Salem. She is an associate member of Artists for Conservation, the world’s leading artist group supporting the environment. Mulhearn is also an exhibiting artist at Rowayton Arts Center and an active member of the New Canaan Society for the Arts.
With a focus on philanthropy, she has participated in collaborative projects, such as the Bow Wow Art Dog initiative, that give back to the community.
Contemporary artist, Meredith Mulhearn’s work is a visual wake-up call. Each piece calls humanity to consider our impact on the environment, abandon complacency and take action. With a practice that merges conceptual and conservation art, her analytical bent emerged in response to a desperate and innate need to reconnect with the natural world. Mulhearn herself explains, “Nature has always spoken to me in quiet ways, but now I find there’s an inextricable link between me and the natural world that finds its voice in all my work.”
Exploring imminent environmental threats, Mulhearn’s work knows no boundaries. Driven by imperative, Mulhearn defines her work by subject matter and employs the most effective media to manifest her message. Mulhearn utilizes both traditional and unconventional media, bending each material to her will. The process for each piece is completely unique and often requires hours of specific training, research and experimentation to achieve the proper technique.
Vacillating between large and small scale, the viewer finds themself immersed, either through inundation or intimacy. Her work often communicates a subtle urgency, juxtaposed against nature’s seeming tranquility.
While her work is often suggestive, Mulhearn’s commitment to the cause is most certainly literal, her artwork directly supporting conservation initiatives. She blurs the line between art and philanthropy.
MK is a self-taught American Abstract Artist based in Chicago, IL. She believes everything is an energy exchange. Everything you choose to do + how you handle everything that happens for you ultimately shapes you. MK's work is a reflection of how she sees + feels the world around her. Her art is intuitive. They are created with no plans of how it will take shape before she lays down her marks. Chaos in a more palatable form. Art should create a reaction. It's what moves us to dig deeper. Her abstract is created with any medium + any tool that speaks to her. Each piece is impossible to recreate. She also uses her language of symbols she has developed over the years to create murals and canvas work. They are a meditative movement and never pre drawn out. She allows the space to lead the rhythm of the markings."The best part is knowing you created that stir. That shake up to their day that they didn't see coming. something they have never experienced before.
"Her work embodies the feeling of wanting to break through the confined space of the canvas. She visually creates the feeling of pushing everything just a little bit further."
MK is the current artist in residence at the iconic Ambassador Hotel in Chicago, IL. With 15+ years of entrepreneurial experience she has spoken on the art x entrepreneur panel for Future Galerie, Chicago IL. She has had her work featured in Architectural Digest, the Sun Chips x Bobby Berk "art seen" campaign, Good Roots, Bar Chido, the Lellow foundation x Spindletap coffee, along with office spaces and homes of some amazing people all over the country.
Newly based out of Huntsville Alabama, former Milwaukee artist Kelly Hammann is finding her place in the vibrant world of realistic painting with her own surrealist flair. Having come from a family of artists, Kelly has been creating in a variety of different artistic mediums for over 20 years. It wasn't until 2020 that she began her professional career journey with acrylic painting, experimenting primarily with subject matter and color. Since then, her work has evolved tremendously, bringing whimsical fluorescent color elements into surrealism scenes - her latest series of which have been inspired by the renaissance era. Kelly's work embodies her interest in renaissance art and love of color in her uniquely juxtaposed pieces.
Roddy Wildeman was born in Long Branch NJ and resides in Ocean Grove. He’s currently the Director at Warburton Galerie in Yonkers, New York where he resides. Over the past 15 years, Wildeman worked as a carpenter and a real estate agent, helping people find new homes & renovating old homes. During the renovation process, he watched as building debris and other materials piled up to be discarded. He began to feel mixed emotions as he thought about the history associated with these items.
He decided to ask the residents if he could salvage this material-building debris, metal and furniture. He began to repurpose and use it to make art. Although he’s not formally trained as an artist, he worked under master carpenters and absorbed their craft. “There is something about knowing these items have been cherished that inspires me. I feel an intimate connection working with materials knowing they have passed through the hands of others. They have sentimental value, because they have been part of homes and the families that lived, loved and died there.”
In his current series of work-his starburst formations are made from wood that was used as floors to walk on, walls and roofs that have provided shelter. Tables and chairs where families have gathered, had their meals and spoke about their days. His starbursts tell the stories of people & times. “I often contemplate if only these materials could talk. I don’t change the colors of the wood I work with- they have an aged texture, a patina that only time can create. I appreciate the weathered torn surface and try to maintain its original form and appearance.”
Another reason Wildeman chooses to work with these materials is that he feel it’s our social responsibility to repurpose and recycle - saving them from taking up space in our landfills in an effort to preserve our environment.
Sébastien Johnson is an American-French painter based out of Chicago, il. His paintings reference works of the old-masters that carefully balance the tension between raw abstraction and academic representation. This clash is both unsettling and beautiful; blurring our understanding of the past and present, and inviting us to critically analyze the narratives of art’s history. Sébastien has participated in Residencies internationally, and has exhibited at various galleries across America.
Susan Brewer’s work follows the impulse of the imagination. Inspired by dreams and meditation, these abstracts employ color, texture, and suggested forms to evoke images that explore the human condition- one’s relationship to the environment, to others and oneself. This interplay of symbolism, archetypes and mythology creates an expression both personal and universal. Brewer’s work has been shown in area galleries and in private and public collections throughout the United States.
Multi-talented Tatu Billy, is a painter, airbrush artist, metal sculpture artist, experienced in concrete etching, decorative painting, faux finishing, mural art, paper mache art, sewing and leather works. Billy is also a palm reader, reiki master, and spiritual being.
Indianapolis native, Indigenous American/Chicano, two-spirit, Billy attended School of Art Institute of Chicago majoring in fine arts, and film and video. He also attended the John Herron School of Art in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Drawing since he could pick up a pencil, Billy began tattooing and exploring body modification when he was a teen. Later, working at many professional shops across the US. Growing up in the punk music scene, he plays several instruments and has performed in several different bands.
“I consider myself an outsider artist. Inspired by the Dada movement, I don't take things too seriously. I just have fun with what I'm doing. I am always creating, exploring, and seeking improvement in my work.”
“Creating is my meditation, a way to explore my own experiences and memories and feelings. I'm not attempting to recreate art inspired by the outside world, but to give the viewer something uniquely personal and relatable.”
Tommy the Animator was born in Manhattan New York on the "upper westside" in 1972. He first began drawing in his early childhood and evolved into a versatile painter, sculptor, and animator in his later years. Tommy the Animator is best known for his language-based style.
His first solo exhibit in 2018 "Lyrics" which took place at the "One Art Space" in Tribeca, NYC was his breakout show. It was a collaborative effort to show the close correlation between art and music. Followed up by his 2019 show "The Foundation" at the Gary Lichenstein Gallery in Mana-Contemporary Jersey City, NJ. These on canvas Collaborations, fine art sculptures and exclusive prints include some of Hip Hops royalty Ice-T, Melle Mel, and Kool Keith just to name a few.
Tommy also has an extensive animation resume from the likes of Farrakahn to Ice-T. In 2009 Tommy released a 2 part animated series titled "The Legend Of The Black Caesar", in Collaboration with Rampage of the famed Flipmode Squad. The series quickly grabbed Ice-T's attention, setting off a string of collaborations including the edgy music video "The Sky Mask Way" for Ice-T's rock group "Body Count.” Released in 2018 under "Century Media Records" it has a half of a million views on youtube and writes up in "Rolling Stone Magazine" and "Livewire.”
Tommy is currently working on a host of animated projects and art through his newly formed partnership with Ice-T launching "Finalmation Studios®" in 2019. A company that Tommy and Ice-T plan to release animated projects and short films that will in the words of Tommy and Ice-T "change the game.”
Travis Owens is a mostly self-taught painter, born and raised in Indiana. His focus is to create a sense of warmth and vibrancy, with a touch of surrealism inspired by his Hoosier roots and world travels.
“I am a painter and combined media artist dedicated to experimentation as a means of self-discovery. I draw inspiration from motherhood which has transformed my practice into episodic glimpses of my existence, thus making sense of the world through my art. My works often consist of large splashes of color poured and scraped across the canvas, with bold lines, gestural marks. Drips of paint balance the entire composition. My hope is to create a bridge between what is felt and what is seen. My approach tries to capture something more than a literal representation of the world. My visceral connection to color is intuitive and used as an expression of internal contemplation.”
“Harmony is a theme seen throughout my latest series. The canvas is layered in abstractions in various monochromatic color schemes, representing the chaos and disarray of the world. Atop of these abstractions, block lines and geometric shapes adorn and stretch from one edge of the frame to the next. Each line and shape are painted with a gradient color fading from one space to the next. Recessions in the block lines and shapes allow the abstractions to subtly pop through. The gradient represents a transcendent moment in time, an awakening. The moment of harmony is only experienced through deep thought, or prayer with one’s higher power.”
Zach Bartz is a visual artist and educator in Chicago, IL. He frequently draws from his career as an improviser to create colorful critters on upcycled materials. His paintings have been displayed at Chicago staples like the Wndr Museum, Cards Against Humanity, Design Museum of Chicago, Elephant Room Gallery, Dark Matter's Star Lounge, Virgil Catherine Gallery, Chicago Diner, Columbia College Chicago, Gallery Cafe, and Dimo's Pizza. His goal as an artist is to connect, affect, and inspire, and he believes that everyone should give themselves permission to create art. As a muralist, his work can be seen at Cards Against Humanity, The Annoyance Theater, Kite String Cantina, The Playground Theater, Cork Lounge, and Graham Cracker Comics Lakeview. He has been a featured artist through the Design Museum of Chicago / DCASE / Chicago Public Health for their Protect Chicago Vaccination campaign, and was the 2021 Chicago Reader 50th Anniversary button contest winner (1990's). He teaches improvisation and visual art to CPS students through Columbia College Chicago, is an instructor at Studio WIP, created the Painting for Improvisers workshop taught at The Second City Training Center Chicago and the Zmack International Improv Intensive, and co-founded the word-of-mouth variety show The Shithole. His goal as an artist is to connect, affect, and inspire, and he believes that everyone should give themselves permission to create art.