PHX ART NOW III is an annual survey of contemporary art comprised of a wide cross-section of different concerns and mediums. It aims to be a snapshot of art production without trying to impose a theme or group ethos on the works being exhibited. Instead, PHX ART NOW III presents a glimpse into some of the most challenging, creative and diverse contemporary art being made in the Valley today.
Artists: Katreena Alvarez, Mia B. Adams, Parker Barfield, Diana Calderon, Antoinette Cauley, Kat Davis, Dani Godreau, Janet Diaz, Ryan Eckert, Estrella Esquilín, Fausto Fernandez, Emmett Graham, Lena Klett, Erin Kuhn, Larry Madrigal, Mathew Marshall, Rafael Navarro, Jessica Palomo, Brianna Noble, Hannah Walsh, Eliza Weber, Mary Wilhelm, and Shoreigh Williams.
Open House: noon-6pm & Opening reception: October 24, 6-9pm, 2020.
Gallery hours: Weds-Sat, noon-5pm.
Closing: November 14.
Katreena Alvarez is a Phoenix based-artist who works in multiple meduims. She makes stunning works in Charcoal and watercolor and has been commissioned for projects, collaborations and custom work of arts throughout the state of Arizona.
Mia B. Adams is a Phoenix-born nationally exhibited artist that currently resides in Arizona. Adams holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with a focus in Intermedia from Arizona State University’s Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts. By delving into topics of race, discrimination, and social hierarchies, Adams is actively exploring and challenging the interconnections between art and social justice through her studio practice. Working across various mediums, her work is a response to ongoing social and political issues and resides as a visual timestamp of the struggles people of color continue to face in contemporary society. Adams has exhibited her work nationally and will be making her international debut this April at the Ibrida Festival of Intermedia Arts in Forlì, Italy.
In my work I play out my existential search, born of collective experiences in American landscapes spanning the continental United States. Landscapes and natural objects as both actors and old friends are touchstones, representing my dialectical desire for both familiar and mystifying experiences. I acknowledge my grounded, bound, and potentially comprehensible experience in my local situation, yet am always drawn deeper into immaterial, metaphysical, and spiritual aspects of existence. Because landscape is such a strong influence in my life, it is through interaction with the things of the landscape that deeper questions are asked and answered not only by my own cognition, but I suggest that the elements themselves have something to tell me.
Diana Calderon, born in Chihuahua, Mexico in 1981, is an interdisciplinary artist and educator based in Phoenix, AZ. Raised in the borderlands of El Paso, Texas and Ciudad Juarez, Calderón earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Arizona State University, 2008. She studied bookmaking & printmaking in Cortona, Italy in the University of Georgia’s Study Abroad Program in 2016 & has studied Printmaking at the University of Dallas. Calderón exhibits artwork nationally and internationally. Calderón blends traditional and contemporary techniques such as relief printmaking, bookmaking and performance art, referencing Mexican archaeological and architectural pattern and texture. Calderón investigates her ancestral roots and personal migrant journey through performance art and sculptural installation.
Being a Phoenix native, Antoinette Cauley’s work is very reflective of her city- the gritty and the beautiful. Her work is heavily influenced by rap music and hip hop culture with a focus on social issues and her own internal conflicts. She combines the grittiness of rap music with the beauty of vibrant color and a personal, emotionally driven message. Cauley has spent the past several years working as a full time artist in her studio in Phoenix, Arizona. She attended Mesa Community College where she studied Fine Art with an emphasis in painting. During this time she held a two year apprenticeship with nationally renowned oil painter Chris Saper. During her spare time, Cauley works with youth ages 5-18, teaching art classes that focus on drawing, painting and color theory. Cauley is represented by the monOrchid Gallery in Phoenix, Arizona. Recently she was named the 2017 and 2018 AZ Foothills Magazine’s Best Local Artist as well as one of the 2019 Phoenix Magazine’s “Great 48: 48 Influential people in the state of Arizona”.
Kat Davis uses the medium of photography to explore presentation and performance of individual identity and its relation to social and political boundaries. Davis’ work has appeared in FLOAT, OURS Magazine, Tits and Co., Terra Firma, and other publications, as well as in art spaces on both the east and west coast. She has been a member of the eye lounge collective for over a year, while serving as a humble host to a cat named Wasabi.
Janet Diaz is a first generation Mexican-American Chicana Artist. Diaz addresses issues of migration, immigration, labor rights and identity. Originally from Salinas California, Diaz resides in Phoenix, Arizona and is a graduate of Arizona State University. Presently, Diaz is the Artist & Community Relation Manager at Xico Arte y Cultura.
Dani Godreau is a feminist artist who is best known for her explorations of women’s traditional crafts and domestic duties through paper cutting. Her work stretches the definition of drawing by creating line and form through incisions and shadow while paying homage to the global tradition of paper cutting as an art form and valorizing devalued women’s labor. She graduated from Florida State University with a BFA in Painting and BA in Art History in 2012 going on to receive her MFA in Drawing/Painting and from Arizona State University in 2016. In 2015 and 2016 Godreau was awarded funding from the Nathan Cumming’s Travel Grant and Shangyuan Artist Residency to facilitate her research in Beijing and Foshan regarding Chinese folk art and traditional paper cutting. She currently resides in Phoenix AZ while teaching at ASU and within the Tempe School District’s Visiting Studio Artist Program.
Brianna Noble is an able bodied Black, Latinx surviving in a predominantly urban white community. Their paintings serve as a reaction to the assumptions their environment enforces. That often requires rejecting what society and their family imposes. How they perform womanhood is determined solely by what they find to be fit. Noble uses the idea that sex sells, so the viewers will be driven to look, then adds words so they will be driven to read, and be given more information to understand that women are human, not just objects for consumption. In turn, Noble hopes that the next person with similar decisions to make can find the familiarity to do so on their terms too.
Ryan Eckert’s paintings explore the relationship between self and his surroundings, assurance and doubt, and forgiveness and shame. Flowers, birds, water, doors, and windows are reoccurring motifs in his work that become figurative with a sense of longing and searching. His paintings display a range of physical beauty that Ryan compares to the impulsive beauty of life’s temptations as well as its overwhelming joys. Each painting is on an individual journey that records the spans of different stages of life, from birth to death and finally ascension. Ryan Eckert’s work is a journal where every page is left open, describing a personal life of faith and spirit, which, though tainted by his own inner desires and ambitions, culminates in a warm, peaceful acceptance of salvation.
Imagination and intuition are at the forefront of Ryan’s paintings. Often ideas for paintings come from things we may find mundane in our everyday lives. Washing off fruit, a flower in a vase, a moon reflecting in water, or a meal at a dinner table. To Ryan, these ideas are so simple that they can be overlooked in most of our day to day lives, but to him, they are everything a painting is truly about. These paintings are views into his life, but it also must they take the viewer somewhere else. Ryan describes these views in his work as a glimpse of his journey of living a life of faith, and the imagery displays the temptations and hardships that come with that endeavor. His paintings have a need to take the viewer somewhere else for a while, a place for thought, peace, and rest. Ryan is interested in letting the viewer escape the current world for a moment, to hopefully find a time of quiet reflection, solace and ultimately a life of understanding and joy.
Esquilín is an observer of people, especially their interactions with each other in prescribed or public places. Her interest in power and privilege, cultural conditioning, and systemic inequity combined with her lived experience as a Stateside Puerto Rican, drives her motivation to complicate physical spaces to reorient a viewer’s experience and perspective in institutional and organized environments. Formally trained as a printmaker, her artwork also explores the use of building materials, constructed spaces, movement, abstracted and appropriated blueprints, map-making, text, collage, and place-centering experiences. Esquilín has exhibited and produced collaborative projects in the U.S. and Mexico. She has been the recipient of artist residencies in Guadalajara, Jalisco (PAOS GDL 2017), New York (iLAND 2015, New York Arts Practicum 2015, AICAD New York Studio Residency Program 2013), Puerto Rico (Beta Local 2014), and New Mexico (Herekeke Art Center 2015). She earned a Master of Fine Art degree from Arizona State University in 2015 and a Bachelor of Fine Art from Kansas City Art Institute in 2007.
Mexican-American Fausto Fernandez was born in El Paso,Texas, he lived in Ciudad Juarez in Chihuahua, Mexico, until age 25 and currently lives in Phoenix Arizona. The artist has also resided in Anthony, New Mexico, and Los Angeles, California. Fernandez is a mixed media collage artist whose art works include a variety of paintings, public art, and community engagement projects. He is known for his large scale multi-media paintings and site-specific installations. In his studio work he employs both traditional media, photography and found objects. He layers these identifiable subjects with abstract elements in dense arrangements, resulting in large compositions that serve as metaphors for human interaction. His work has been selected for exhibitions at the Gate Cultural Center in San Pedro, California; McNay Museum of Art in San Antonio; Akron Museum in Ohio; Mesa Contemporary Arts at Arizona’s Mesa Arts Center; Tempe Center for the Arts in Arizona; Smithsonian’s George Gustav Heye Center in New York; and Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto, Canada. His collages are in the permanent collections at Tucson Museum of Art in Arizona, Phoenix Art Museum, The Heard Museum, The Stanlee and Gerald Rubin Center for the Visual Arts at The University of Texas at El Paso, and The City of El Paso Museum and Cultural Affairs Department.
Emmett Graham is a realist painter based in the Southwest. He is a Marine Corps veteran, born in Warner Robins, Georgia and raised in Pueblo, Colorado. Graham received his formal training at Scottsdale Artists’ School and holds a BFA in Painting from Arizona State University. Graham’s paintings center on issues of inherited cultural Identities, rendering indigenous and Meso-American historical iconography in the style of traditional Italian renaissance painting to mingle and confuse the visual languages of his own ancestral lineage. He keys in on the 15th century invasions of the Americas as the cataclysmic turning point where these two worlds collided to create the stark and enduring duality of pre- and post-Columbian cultures. Attempting to understand and express his own fanning lineage by juxtaposing cultural symbols, cues and tableaus, Graham goads the careful viewer to the same task.
Lena Klett is an interdisciplinary artist currently based in Phoenix, Arizona. She graduated from the Kansas City Art Institute in 2014 with a dual BFA in Fiber and Art History, and an MFA from Arizona State University with an emphasis in Fiber in 2019. Klett has exhibited in Kansas City, Missouri, Phoenix and Tempe, Arizona, and internationally at Shiro Oni Studio in Onishi, Japan. Her work is included in the private collection of Gregory M Glore, and in the KCAI Fiber Department Collection, both located in Kansas City, Missouri. She is a recipient of a Herberger Enrichment Grant, an international 5 week residency in Onishi, Japan, and the Friends of Contemporary Art Emerging Artist Grant in 2019. Most recently, she was an artists in residence at Monson Arts in Maine.
Erin Kuhn is an MFA Printmaking Graduate at Arizona State University. All her work centers around narrating and formulating the journey of finding a home between land, sea, and sky. In the act of walking on printing plates around locations of home displacement, Kuhn’s work embodies the physical and mental health issues related to being lost with hopes of being found.
Larry Madrigal’s work was featured in several exhibitions at key galleries and museums. Larry Madrigal (b. 1986, Los Angeles) lives and works in Phoenix, Arizona. Madrigal recently completed his MFA at Arizona State University in Tempe. His paintings are a suspension and celebration of the precariousness by which our most mundane daily rituals are balanced on a precipice just above total anarchy. Recent exhibitions include Larry Madrigal: Scattered Daydream, Nicodim Upstairs, Los Angeles (2020, solo); When You Waked Up the Buffalo, Nicodim Gallery, Los Angeles (2020); Painting the Figure Now II, Wausau Museum of Contemporary Art, Wasau, Wisconsin (2019); New Art Arizona, Shemer Art Center and Museum, Phoenix, Arizona (2019); and Body Language: Figuration in Modern and Contemporary Art, curated by Julie Sasse, Tuscon Museum of Art, Tuscon, Arizona (2017).
Matthew Marshall is a painter based out of Tempe, Arizona. Born and raised in the valley, Matthew started painting at age 17 and fell in love. Working primarily with oil paints, he focuses on creating images that make references to historical religious and landscape works from centuries past. Combining found images with narratives and abstractions, Matthew creates inconclusive narratives that are as much about the material as they are about subject matter. Earning his BFA from Arizona State University in 2014, Matthew has remained in the desert and participated in numerous shows and publications. Most notably in 2016 he participated in the Art For Change Foundation’s residency program in New Delhi, India. Upon returning he displayed in his first solo show through the Phoenix Institute of Contemporary Art.
Ever since I was a child in Mexico City, I felt the need to create with my hands. I would play and sculpt with anything in my reach. I didn’t possess any fancy toys, so my favorite material was modeling clay. I would make my own action figures and when I was finished playing. I would knead the clay in to a ball to start over again the next day. This hand mind exercise was the actual beginning of my career. I work by instinct, through an internal dialog that I can’t ignore. The ideas dictate the medium, thereby fostering a strong relationship between the images and materials. I draw inspiration from my heritage, personal observations and childhood memories. I alter the same ideas by taking different approaches with various materials, such as with the “guitar/woman” series. I prefer to communicate visually, in a poetic manner, making similarities in the creation of life, music, and art. I pay tribute to women who create life; through conception, they create music and the masterpiece of a new person. Often, my musical pieces become exaggerated seedpods, also representing the evolution of life. I can’t let go of my work until I am satisfied, until I achieve the ideal state of expression. Only then am I able to see that my visual “talk” can speak clearly to those who view it.
Brianna Noble is an able bodied Black, Latinx surviving in a predominantly white community. Their paintings serve as a reaction to the assumptions their environment enforces. That often requires rejecting what society and their family imposes. How Noble performs womanhood is determined solely by what they find to be fit. Noble uses the idea that sex sells, so the viewers will be driven to look, then adds words so they will be driven to read, and be given more information to understand that women are human, not just objects for consumption. In turn, Noble hopes that the next person with similar decisions to make can find the familiarity to do so on their terms too.
Jessica Palomo is a phoenix-based artist who works in drawing and sculpture to investigate uncomfortable situations. Palomo has an MFA from Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ., and a BFA from Southern Methodist University, Dallas, TX. She was the artist in residence at the Palazzo Rinaldi in 2011 with a solo exhibition in Noepoli, Italy. She has been the recipient of multiple awards including the Nathan Cummings Travel Fellowship and the Martin Wong Foundation Scholarship. She has shown her work extensively in Arizona, Texas, as well as several other places nationally and internationally.
Hannah is an artist, professor, and tarologist. Her multimedia work explores alter-egos, primal feminism, and mythology. Her collective, Ordo Helicali, hosts monthly tarot meetups.
Please Note: In keeping with local and national health recommendations for re-opening businesses we are taking the strictest precautions to sanitize our facilities and provide on-site guidelines for social distancing and other measures. We ask that you please join us in fighting the spread of COVID-19 by wearing a mask to openings and observing current social distancing guidelines or six feet or more. We will be putting work online for those who would like to view it from home and we are open during the week as well as by appointment for those who want to have private viewings. The mood room has plenty of room to practice safe social distancing but we are limiting patrons who visit the video project room upstairs to 2 per viewing at this time. We will regulate access during regular gallery hours and we ask for your understanding and continued support in keeping our community healthy and safe.
Eliza Weber was born and raised in Great Falls, Montana. She received a BFA in Ceramics at The University of Montana in 2011. That same year, she participated in a short-term residency at Medalta International Artists in Residence in Alberta, Canada. Eliza most recently finished a two-year Artist in Residence at Pottery Northwest in Seattle, Washington. Majority of her current work is functional soda fired ceramic, but at times her materials include handmade paper, fabric, and mixed media. She is currently pursuing her MFA at Kansas State University.
Mary Christine Wilhelm was born in Wichita, Kansas and is currently an MFA at ASU. Her art is also informed from the absurd amount of time watching the Twilight Zone, Courage the Cowardly dog, and Godzilla. Along with sneaking in the occasional campy, scary movie on the Sci-fi channel, until they played “It” by Stephen King one day and it gave her nightmares. Wandering outdoors ever since she was young, she always happened across odd things that she probably should not have found and developed a strong interest in animals from all these impromptu outings (often trying to befriend the neighborhood feral cats much to their chagrin). Today she makes images that are fanciful, narrative and allegorical, using figures from the animal kingdom to symbolize larger issues in society.
Shoreigh Williams is a Phoenix based artist working in multiple media.
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Artlink keeps the arts integral to our development by connecting artists, businesses, and the community. Founded as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization by artists in 1989, the Artlink name is a guiding principle for the organization as it supports the stakeholders of the arts and culture community, amplifying its collective strength. Visit artlinkphx.org to sign up for the Artlink newsletter or connect socially on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
About mood room
The mood room is a new gallery concept by Artlink, Inc., a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, that seeks to address the needs of 21st century artistic practice. More than just an exhibition venue, the mood room is an interdisciplinary art space that was founded in 2020 via a partnership with Park Central and with support from Flinn Foundation and the Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust. Located in midtown Phoenix, the mood room aims to connect the services that Artlink provides to artists, art venues and partner organizations while supporting cultural creatives through new opportunities to exhibit, engage and grow the influence of their art practice.