Thursday, December 17, 2015

Rosewater Opening Reception

There was a wonderful turnout for the opening reception of the Winter Exhibition series at the Indianapolis Art Center. Many thanks to all those who came from near and far to support the Art Center and the artists who exhibited.

And an extra big thanks to the folks who played a part in making Rosewater a reality. Nearly all of the work in this exhibition was fabricated in Chiang Rai, Thailand—a feat that would not have been possible without the support and assistance of good friends and family, enthusiastic local Thai businesses, and the wonderfully accommodating and competent Thai Postal Service. I am very grateful to the generosity of all those who helped along this many-stepped way from Northern Thailand to the Indianapolis Art Center. A giant, bear-hugged thank you to Yuliya, Poli and Ilo Naumkina, Harry Kevitz, Tinnakorn Nukul, Sapa Jewelers, Taweeksak Molowat, Sompong Makawan and Pakarat Manoruang at The Room Chiang Rai, Kahm and Daeng Chantha, Barbara Kempler, Ron Toelke, Arielle Toelke, Janet Irwin, Lew Jones, Andrea Miller, Micah Eisenmann, Caiola Construction, Roberta Lovenheim, the Indianapolis Art Center and, of course, to Anthony Irwin, who continues to traverse both sides of the world—and all the air space in between—with me.

Below are photos from the opening. Individual images of the newest work in the show will be added to my website soon.

 Gallery view of Rosewater
Transom (mirrored acrylic)
Entrance (repurposed old doors), Dragonfruit (mirrored acrylic), and a wee bit of Bauble (steel, auto paint)
Exclaim (acrylic and glitter) on the right, and most of Compass (gold plated brass), on the left 
Big Secret (acrylic) and Split Hairs (acrylic)
Bauble (steel, auto paint), Dragonfruit (mirrored acrylic), and Adorned (steel, auto paint)
Bangle (steel, auto paint) and Bauble (steel, auto paint)
Family photo-op
Twinkle (stainless steel, acrylic) and Big Secret

Monday, December 7, 2015


I am happy to announce the opening of my solo exhibition, Rosewater, at the Indianapolis Art Center. This exhibition includes work made in and inspired by my time living in Northern Thailand for the last two years. Rosewater will be on view through the end of January 2016. The opening reception is December 11th.

The Indianapolis Art Center is located at 820 East 67th Street, Indianapolis, Indiana

More photos soon!

Saturday, December 6, 2014

How It's Made: Part 1

For awhile now I have been meaning to write post about my studio work and art making experience while living in Thailand. It is hard to believe that is has been over a year since I packed up and came to the other side of the world. Moving always takes some adjusting, but moving to a foreign country comes with an even larger learning curve. That, combined with my compulsion to make things--preferably large, ridiculous things that require special tools, equipment, and materials--can create   complications, compromises, and yes, some tears. But this year has been productive, rewarding, and certainly educational.

After living in a country where anything can be had and found with either a short car ride or ordered online, it has been a true test of patience to slow the pace of my immediate wants and needs. Nearly everything can be had here, it just takes time to find, and often requires asking for help. While there is the obvious language barrier, which can definitely be frustrating, there are a lot of smaller things to navigate, like relearning where to buy things like bread, ibuprofen, and epoxy. Fortunately, Anthony is always up for a scavenger hunt and willing to spend a Saturday looking for steel or spending an evening (or two) at the sign shop while I am having things laser cut. Everyone else I have met so far has been equally generous and helpful, happily pointing me in the right direction for finding things like saw blades. 

Even at my most frustrated, I know there is a silver lining to be found, it sometimes just takes me a little while to discover it. It has been hugely exciting to stumble across new materials, see different fabrication processes in action, and to start to know my way around Chiang Rai, learning which places to go to for what. 

* * * * *

For this post I will break down my process making the two pieces I showed together in the group exhibition Scriptopia back in July. I will write a second post that goes through the most recent work from Mother Tongue

Scripted: I came prepared with this piece, bringing with me a paper template that I had printed before leaving the states. I had been wanting to continue exploring powder coated steel as a material, as well as create a piece that related to the earlier work, Charmed, from 2012. It was really great to have something ready to work on. For me, the hardest part is always starting a new project and with so many other life changes taking place, it was a relief to immerse myself in a process that I know so well.

Paper template with hand drawn edits



The great thing with sawing by hand is that I didn't need much to get going. I had brought my saws, saw blades, and bench pin so all I needed was steel, a table, and a drill to start, none of which were too difficult to find. 

When my pieces were all cut, filed, and sanded, they were ready to be powder coated. Through a lucky online search I came across Richco Powder Coating, specialists in powder coating custom motorcycle parts, located just a few hours away in Chiang Mai. They were open to the project and did amazing work. I could not have been happier with the final product.

Laying out the finished pieces to make a template for installation

Photo by Elizabeth Andrews

* * * * *

Transom: This piece evolved to be perfect blend of the old with the new. It draws heavily from themes that I have been working with for awhile--architectural ornament, visual language, signage, flat space, empty space, etc.-- but it is also influenced by my new surroundings, specifically the mirrored mosaic tiles that encrust many of the temples in Thailand. I have really been taken with the jewel-like quality of the mirrored surface and can't quite get enough of it. Currently, as with Transom, I am creating my own version, using mirrored acrylic as opposed to glass, though I am sure it is only a matter of time before I try my hand at glass cutting and tiling. Right now I am enjoying the in-between place, as well as the possibilities that come with laser cutting. 

As with much of my recent work, I began with a rough sketch and then took it to the computer to finalize the layout and design. Since I was planning to laser cut all of my shapes, I had to create a digital file anyway. Anthony happened to come across a small sign shop with a CNC router, laser cutter, and, most importantly, a willingness to take on a slightly unconventional job as well as answer a lot of questions. This shop, The Room Chiang Rai, has been extremely wonderful and genuinely fun to work with so far, and we have at this point, clocked many hours sitting and drinking beer together while the laser cutter cuts away. 

Stacked sheets of empty shapes

 Playing jigsaw puzzle on my porch with all the cut pieces

Gluing mosaic tiles

Carefully packed to travel around the world

Photo by Elizabeth Andrews
Photo by Elizabeth Andrews

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Mother Tongue

Many hands came together to help make the installation and opening reception for Mother Tongue a success. The show will be on view at Gallery Seescape--a truly a special gem of a place in Chiang Mai--until December 8th.

A big thank you to everyone at Seescape and to all those who made it to the opening. Special thanks to Becky Weldon, Neung Nukul, Harry Kevitz, Philip Jablon, and of course, the endlessly supportive, and many time hero, Anthony Irwin.

Below are a few photos from the installation as well as (most of) the final work.


Dragon Fruit, mirrored plexi-glass, 2014

Cloud Forms, mixed media, 2014

Pow, Kapow, plexi-glass, silver leaf, gold leaf, 2014

Reveal, watercolor, gouache, ink on paper, 2014

Knot, watercolor, gouache, ink on paper, 2014

Lift, watercolor, gouache, ink on paper, 2014


And, below are some photos of the opening provided by Gallery Seescape. You can see more here.

City Life, a monthly news, art and culture magazine based in Chiang Mai, came and took some photos of the opening as well. Take a look at here to see!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

SCRIPTopia Opening Reception

Below is a selection of photos--generously taken and provided by the Dorsky Gallery--of the opening reception for SCRIPTopia. The show looks great and it was a wonderful experience to work with everyone at the Dorsky, the curators, Jamie Bennett and Anat Shiftan, as well as the three other artists, Martin Anderson, Patti Nelson, and Patrick Paine.

The exhibition will up until August 22nd so there is still plenty of time to see the work in person!

Happy looking and process photos to come soon!