Growing up in an industrial area of Northwest Indiana, to a family of steel workers, it can almost seem like a pre-destiny that I would end up working in the steel mill myself. And while there is nothing wrong with that life, I was much more interested in drawing the steel mills then I was in working at one.
I spent most of my childhood daydreaming and building evergreen sanctuaries in the woods around my home. I liked to draw, write and genuinely let my imagination run away with me. Since there were a lot of train cars in my area, the wild (yet structured) graffiti tags were of particular interest and I started to make marks of my own; though these were mostly repeated patterns instead of the stylized lettering so often used. I would draw patterns and shapes everywhere: scrap paper, the walls of my bedroom closet, even my homework assignments (though, this got me into trouble.) Lines had become a serious obsession, but at the time, it was just something kids did.
This obsession followed me all the way into high school. Though I kept it mostly to myself, I wanted to go to art college after I graduated. Since most of my family and friends weren’t very interested in the subject, I felt this was the only way I could evolve. When I revealed this to my senior teacher, I was met with a startling response, “You’ll never be good enough to get into art school, so don’t even bother trying.” At first I was devastated and then I was angry! I applied to one academy and was accepted.
I was so excited about this new journey that you can imagine the heartbreak I felt when I realized how much I hated school. I dropped out after a single semester. There was no plan B. So what do I do now?
For a year after, I just worked and thought about what to do with my life. At this point, I figured art was a dead track and that my high school teacher was right. So I decided to attend a local college and get a degree in…something. Still had no idea what, I wasn’t interested in anything else, but it was a prerequisite to take a basic photography course. So I did.
The B&W Photography course completely rekindled my love of creating. This class was more about just going out and doing rather than lectures and theory. While the structure was lacking, the freedom was needed. I was back where I belonged.
Since 2003 I have been actively pursuing my career. It wasn’t until I became a full-time artist, in 2015, that I dedicated my pursuits towards painting, photography and (now) digital media, concentrating on architectural/industrial elements, geometric patterns and the wonders of nature. In this time I have been featured in numerous exhibitions in the Mid-West and beyond and have work in several Fortune 500 collections and academic institutions including Texas A&M and University of Chicago Medicine.
When I’m creating, I like to keep an open mind, but I often find that I am returning to the same subjects of man & nature, architecture and brutalist/geometric design. I’m in a constant study of these environments and I am not in an exclusive relationship with one discipline. I like to express my environments through various mediums, particularly painting, photography, sgraffito drawings, textiles and most recently (and favorably) digital methods. By using digital means, I am able to print on demand and have a more environmentally conscience practice.
Line is everything! That is why I’ve always found architecture and geometrics to be so influential to my obsession. I lose myself in exploring the guidelines, functions and connectivity of varied shapes, styles, and elements. Clean lines and minimal details resonate. By removing the minutiae and focusing on the barest of essentials, I’m forced to analyze how line, color and negative space plays an ample role in the construction of environments.
2018 – Suburban Seas, Promise You Art House – Highland, IN
2017 – Dark Matter, Chess Art Gallery (Purdue University) – Hammond, IN
2017 – Pop-Up (Curated by Highland Redevelopment Commission) – Highland, IN
2016 – Rhetorical Geometry, Wolff Gallery – Portland, OR
2014 – Expression for Isadora Duncan, Site Specific Installations, White Ripple Gallery & Co. – Hammond, IN
2013 – Rudimentary, Walnut Ink Projects – Michigan City, IN
2011 – INside Out, Tool Shed Gallery – Milwaukee, WI
2010 – Masque, Substation No. 9 – Hammond, IN
2005 – Selected Works, Bernard Gallery – Whiting, IN
GROUP & DUO EXHIBITIONS (selected)
2021 – Beautiful Flower, Renoca Lobo Art Gallery, Valenzuela City, Philippines
2021 – Fluxus, Photography Center of Thessaloniki – Thessaloniki, Greece
2021 – Telephone, Online Exhibition (Covid-19 Restricted) – Brooklyn, NY
2020 – Identity, Art Fluent – Cape Cod, Massachusetts
2019 – Indy Windy : A Love Story (Curated by Ish Muhammad), Marshall J. Gardner Center – Miller, IN
2019 – Smalls to the Walls, Galerie F – Chicago, IL
2018 – Indy Windy : A Love Story, South Shore Arts – Munster, IN
2018 – Degrees of Abstraction, 201 Gallery – Argonne, IL
2017 – Geometric Complexions, Zhou B Art Center. – Chicago, IL
2016 – Line of Site, Mott St. – Chicago, IL
2016 – Gateway, Art NXT Level Projects /33 Contemporary – Chicago, IL
2015 – P.O.P : Perceptions of Population, 33 Contemporary Gallery – Chicago, IL
2015 – Mares & Jimenez (Duo Exhibition), Walnut Ink Projects – Michigan City, IN
2015 – Slideshow, Roman Susan Annex – Chicago, IL
2014 – Emergence, Mist Gallery – Richmond, VA
2014 – Curator’s Choice: The 10th National Self-Portrait Exhibition, 33 Contemporary Gallery – Chicago, IL
2014 – Family: Interpretations by Contemporary Women Artists, Customs House Museum – Clarksville, TN
2013 – No Away To Throw To, Sacred Keepers Youth Garden / Shacks & Shanties – Bronzeville – Chicago, IL
2012 – MergeArts 2012 Summer Exhibition, MergeArts – Hammond, IN
2011 – Feminist Depictions of Darkness in Place, Space and Season, Illinois Institute of Technology Chicago, IL
2010 – Go Figure, Thaddeus C. Gallery – Laporte, IN
2019 – Owl You Need is Love Public Art Project – Sponsored by Humane Indiana
2018 – MINI Library Box Project Artist – Sponsored by MINI USA, Saatchi Art for Little Black Pearl – Chicago, IL
2018 – ‘Highland Has Art’ Grant : Highland Community Foundation
2016 – Highland Redevelopment Commission : Mural Project : Legacy Foundation Grant
2018 – Artist in Residence – Green Street Projects – Chicago, IL.
2015 – Artist in Residence – Keweenaw Coffee Works – Calumet, MI.
2013 – Lake House Studio Residency – CRN Fine Art – Valporaiso, IN.
2019 – Artist Talk – Indy Windy : A Love Story – Marshall J. Gardner Center – Miller, IN
2018 – Art and Social Action – Saatchi Art Talks Panel – The Other Art Fair – Chicago, IL
2017 – On the Radar, Lakeshore Public Access Interview WLPR-FM 98.1
2017 – Art on the Air – WVLP 103.1 Radio – Valparaiso, IN
2015 – Insight Design Conference – Cedar Lake Arts Center – Cedar Lake, IN.
2013 – What’s That – Panel Discussion – Public Art, Environmental Movement and Community – Chicago, IL
2018 – HERE Magazine – The Story of Highland’s Three- Walled Mural
2016 – Portland Gallery Only Features Female Artists – KGW8 News – Portland, OR
2015 – iARTistas Magazine Issue #13
2014 – iARTistas Magazine Issue #11
2014 – Poets /Artists Magazine, Issue #55
CORPORATE/PRIVATE COLLECTIONS (selected)
University of Chicago Medicine – Prairie View A&M University – Dechert LLP – Charles Schwabb – Indiana University – Reside Living (Lofts at Gin Alley) – Embassy Suites – Kimpton Hotel, Manchester – Het Kleurbureau