Spotlight On: Great Meadows Round 22 Artist Development Grantees

Aug 2, 2023 at 11:25 pm
Spotlight On: Great Meadows Round 22 Artist Development Grantees

Great Meadows Foundation is the legacy of the late Reverand Al Shands and named after the home he and his wife Mary shared. The organization supports artists and curators with grant monies and opportunities for networking. LEO wanted to shine a spotlight on the artists who were awarded Artist Development Grants this year and what they planned to do. We asked each of them the same set of questions. 

“Tree Swallow Sunrise”, 5-color relief engraving, woodcut, 2023.
“Tree Swallow Sunrise”, 5-color relief engraving, woodcut, 2023.

Joanne Price

Age: 49

Pronouns: She/ her

What is your art medium and how did you decide to pursue art as a career? 

I am a printmaker specializing in wood engraving (a popular Victorian illustration technique). I’ve been doing book illustrations for fine press publishers like Larkspur Press (Monterey, KY) and October Press (Lexington, KY) since 2015. I feel extremely honored to have worked with amazing Kentucky authors like Wendell Berry, Sena Jeter Naslund, Frank X Walker, Silas House, Maureen Moorehead and more. I’m also really lucky to have the opportunity to work with wonderful Kentucky organizations like Josephine Sculpture Park, Kentucky Natural Lands Trust, Yew Dell Gardens, Bernheim Arboretum & Research Forest and more to promote art, land conservation, and sustainable living. 

You were awarded an Artist Development Grant, what are your plans for the grant? 

I will be traveling to Les Baux-de-Provence, France to participate in a cultural and professional exchange program at the Louis Jou Foundation. I am the first of several non-French artists invited to teach a wood engraving workshop at the Louis Jou Foundation as the medium has nearly disappeared from practice in France in the past 60 years. Louis Jou was known as a book architect practicing wood engraving, typography, printing, and book illumination. I am excited to research Louis Jou’s collection of prints, type and engraving blocks during my visit. I will also visit the Lyon Museum of Printing & Graphic Communication, Collection Lambert in Avignon, the Center Pompidou in Paris, and more.

Where would you like to see your art in 5 years? 

I’d love to see more of my work in public collections at libraries and museums. I’d also love to have the opportunity to collaborate with scientists and historians. I enjoy the shared knowledge and how it can enhance my own explorations.

What would you like to see happen in Louisville for local arts and artists?

More grant and exhibition opportunities would be great - for ALL Kentucky artists - not just limited to the Louisville area. 

Why does art matter to you? 

Art is my life - it feeds me both literally and intellectually. It gives me a voice, even when my work is anonymous. Art is the lens through which I understand and interact with the world.

adyton DREAMS by Ezra Kellerman
adyton DREAMS by Ezra Kellerman

Ezra Kellerman

Age: 42

Pronouns: He/they

What is your art medium and how did you decide to pursue art as a career? 

I don’t really have a medium, I try to allow my ideas to determine how I make things and what I use to make them. Although, lately I’ve been 3D printing and making videos more than anything else. Creating artwork has always been something I’ve felt compelled to do. I decided to make it a serious commitment in my life since I couldn’t stop thinking about it or doing it anyways. Once I was into that commitment, for about a year or so, I realized that it’s more fun to do than anything else. There’s been no looking back since, baby!

You were awarded an Artist Development Grant, what are your plans for the grant? 

Experiencing two specific exhibits at this year’s Biennale Architettura; Yasmine Mahmoudieh’s Metamorphosis, and the American pavilion. Both exhibits have similar theses regarding the use of plastics in the future of design and architecture, but they appear to have different conclusions on the role 3D printing plays in that future.

Where would you like to see your art in 5 years? 

On the moon or another planet.

What would you like to see happen in Louisville for local arts and artists? 

The development of a local arts economy, more critical discourse directed at practicing Louisville artists.

Why does art matter to you?

 It’s a universal language that allows people to understand experiences and perspectives that aren’t their own. Also, creating artwork is a manifestation of our species’ evolutionary apogee.

Susan Hatcher

Age: 52

Pronouns: She/her

What is your art medium and how did you decide to pursue art as a career? 

I primarily work with ceramics/ clay/ pottery

I started creating with clay in high school. My art teacher signed notes so I could get out of study hall and work in the art room. I would build coil pots and have not stopped since then. But I do believe it has been a steady and consistent ritual. I have expanded my repertoire to wheel thrown and slab vessels & teapots.

You were awarded an Artist Development Grant, what are your plans for the grant? 

I will travel to Vallauris, France. I will live and work at their Artist in Residence program for a month in October (this year). It is exciting to get to meet international clay workers (Norway, Canada, Australia, Slovakia, Austria, France, & more) for me. I plan to visit contemporary art in the region around Nice and the Cote d’ Azure. Picasso has a museum in Antibes; he had created ceramic work there in the 1940’s and 50’s ( lucky me gets to check it out.)

Where would you like to see your art in 5 years? 

My work is always evolving. I will be able to build bigger & large scale pieces in the next 5 years but on the flip side I also enjoy a small intricately designed and well thrown vase.

What would you like to see happen in Louisville for local arts and artists?

Louisville has always had good visual art institutions from the Speed, KMAC contemporary,& LVA. I hope our community continues to promote and foster the growth of artists and the arts in Louisville. I am a part of Louisville Potters, founded by Sarah Frederick (1935-2023) almost 50 years ago. I have been able to promote this group as one of the organizers and sell and create work because of its large following. We are moving to Waterfront Botanical gardens on Nov. 11 for our next show which will feature 12 ceramic artists! 

Why does art matter to you?

Art is so engrained in my daily life from my morning tea from a mug a friend created or my practice of throwing and building vessels. Clay has rooted my being and soothed my soul.

Sculpture by Gayle Cerlan
Sculpture by Gayle Cerlan

Gayle Cerlan

Age: senior citizen, age 124,lol

Pronouns: Female

What is your art medium and how did you decide to pursue art as a career? 

My medium is ceramic sculpture. Went to Louisville School of Art, trained as an artist and have been ever since. I am an art teacher as well, taught at LVAA, UL, Indiana SW before opening my own non-accredited art school in Louisville, ArtStudio. I knew at age 10 that I was an artist.

You were awarded an Artist Development Grant, what are your plans for the grant? 

For the grant, I plan to attend a Women’s Figurative Ceramic Workshop in Bakersville, NC with internationally known ceramic sculptor, Lisa Clague. The workshop will be based on discussions of various sculptural techniques, influences as well as a space to work.  It will also provide a forum for the artists to engage in conversations concerning the relationships between art and society, the obstacles that society has placed on gender, ageism, breaking out of traditional roles, feminism and political influences in contemporary art.

Where would you like to see your art in 5 years? 

 In five years I see myself continuing as a professional artist.  Finding diverse gallery/museum representation.

What would you like to see happen in Louisville for local arts and artists?

I would like to see in Louisville more studio spaces and realistic rents availability as well as more galleries. 

Why does art matter to you?

Art matters to me in the same way food, drink, breath, nature, being alive matters to me. It is who I am.

Rebecca Richards

Age: 28

Pronouns: They/She

What is your art medium and how did you decide to pursue art as a career? 

I am a multidisciplinary visual artist currently working in the realms of fashion, film, and sculpture. I decided to finally pursue art as a career after many years of slowly picking apart everything I have ever learned--- deprogramming-- and remembering who I really am and have always been: an artist. 

You were awarded an Artist Development Grant, what are your plans for the grant? 

I plan to visit three major fashion exhibitions and connect with artists throughout Europe, traveling to London to see “REBEL: 30 Years Of London Fashion” at the Design Museum, Paris to see “Iris Van Herpen: Sculpting The Senses” at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs, and Antwerp to see “ECHO. Wrapped In Memory” at MoMu.

Where would you like to see your art in 5 years? 

I was once told by a psychic, before I was even making art, that my work would be shown at the Whitney someday- so seeing that happen in 5 years would be fun. 

What would you like to see happen in Louisville for local arts and artists? 

I would love to see more funding for the arts in Louisville and everywhere, so that artists can focus on pushing their art and experimenting more, doing things that are unexpected and scary, instead of always worrying about how we are going to survive and sell our art.

Why does art matter to you? 

I feel that language is often inadequate and making art is the best method I have to communicate-- to myself, to others, and to the universe. Through this play and experimentation I get to know myself better, heal, and connect with magic and wonder. It is also how I channel my anger at the broken systems in the world- by making beautiful things that are sustainable to honor the planet, and that are brightly colored, highly ornamented, and maximalist as a way to reclaim physical and visual space for queer people to occupy in a world that would rather see us disappear.

www.paperworkfilms.com
www.paperworkfilms.com

Roy Taylor

Age: 67

Pronouns: He / Him / His   

What is your art medium and how did you decide to pursue art as a career?

Stop motion animation (www.paperworkfilms.com). As a teen I would play around with animation using a Super 8 film camera and cardboard cutouts. After a long and varied career in the technical aspect of music touring and theatre production my passion for animation resurfaced after being asked to produce a music video for a touring client, Patty Griffin. The artist I was to collaborate with on the project with became unavailable. With a deadline to complete the project I chose to go back to my teenage style and incorporate some of the theatrical lighting knowledge I picked up in the theatre. During it’s production her guest on the duet, Robert Plant, asked me “Taylor, if you can do all this s**t, why are you f***ing around in the music business?” Presently, I spend about half my year on the touring gig; the other half here in my Louisville animation studio creating short films.

You were awarded an Artist Development Grant, what are your plans for the grant?

I am currently producing an animated narrative feature length film. I have recently begun to combine line-drawn rotoscoped images with my paper and light techniques. The grant I have received will allow me to attend the London International Animation Festival in late November. My goal is to learn more about these techniques from other animators and perhaps find potential collaborators for the feature project. 

Where would you like to see your art in 5 years?

Five years is a realistic goal for completion of this feature length project. Along with that, my goal would be to financially able to sustain myself wholly on my practice. I never see myself retiring and plan on playing with cameras and paper as long as I can.

What would you like to see happen in Louisville for local arts and artists?

I think Louisville is already rich in programs that support artists in comparison to other regions I’ve lived in or visited. Great Meadows, Hadley Creatives, Amped, LVA, Art Sanctuary and so many others have each found a path to provide opportunities. I’d like to see programs which bring knowledge and resources directed towards artists making a living from their art. There are so many non-artistic skills involved - legal, publicity, financial, etc. Programs that can make these aspects easier to learn about, navigate and be made more affordable to artists are very helpful. 

Why does art matter to you?

To me, the art that I make tells tales, gives perspective and conveys emotion. That is also what I see in art of all forms. Art has the ability to communicate across all borders, boundaries and languages. It is essential. Cave paintings, often done as a sequence of images, could be considered the first animation! 

Spotlight On: Great Meadows Round 22 Artist Development Grantees
gregreynolds

Gregory (Greg) Reynolds

Age:  70

Pronouns: He/Him/His

What is your art medium and how did you decide to pursue art as a career? 

Photography was the medium that got me closest to narrative film making.

You were awarded an Artist Development Grant, what are your plans for the grant? 

I will see the Wolfgang Tillmans retrospective exhibition in San Francisco. 

Where would you like to see your art in 5 years? 

I want to see my work published with a combined exhibition.

What would you like to see happen in Louisville for local arts and artists?

no answer

Why does art matter to you?  

Art matters. WE live from Art. It is our life blood 

http://shachafpolakow.com/
http://shachafpolakow.com/
Spotlight On: Great Meadows Round 22 Artist Development Grantees
SHACAHF POLAKOW

Shachaf Polakow

Age: 43

Pronouns: He/Him

What is your art medium and how did you decide to pursue art as a career? 

Photography and New Media. Photography has been part of my life since I was 12 years old, and since then i always had a camera with me. Through the years I mostly focused on political and social photography, working with different groups and people around the world. Around 10 years ago I decided that I wanted to art and photography teach in higher education, so I started my journey in academia, which ended a few months ago when I graduated from the MFA program at the Hite Institute of Art and Design at UofL. Through the MFA program, I experimented and expanded my artistic toolbox with sound, video art and digital 3d art.

You were awarded an Artist Development Grant, what are your plans for the grant? 

This grant gives me the opportunity to explore and learn more about Nordic and Arctic arts and culture. I will spend a couple of weeks at the Nordingrå Art Village on the high coast of Sweden, exploring the area and specifically how the shortest and coldest time of the year affect my perspective and artistic thinking. At the same time, I will meet local artists with the hope to hear from them about their processes and art practice. The second part of the trip will take place in Stockholm and Umea where i will go to see contemporary art and exhibitions, I am especially looking forward to seeing the Arctic Art exhibition in Umea and the exhibition in Stockholm about the effects of global warming in the Arctic

Where would you like to see your art in 5 years? 

I hope that in five years my art will continue to develop and expand, creating wholesome experiences for those who see it. With the fast-growing expanse of the digital sphere, I would like to see my art move in between them, challenging the fast changes of our world,  the environmental and political crisis that we experience, the growing number of AI tools and how they affect our everyday life and how they affect the art world. At the same time I hope that in 5 years I will have secured a teaching position, I found education as important as my own art, seeing education as one of the main tools for change.

What would you like to see happen in Louisville for local arts and artists? 

It will be great to see the art scene expand and have more experimental and new media art.  I think the art scene here is great and for a city in this size it is really impressive, but I wish there were more places that show Video, Sound and New Media. 

Why does art matter to you? 

As i mentioned before art was always part of my life and i believe art can offer comfort and joy to many, it is a core part of everyone’s life and it can be used to activate people and inspire them for a better future for all.

Spotlight On: Great Meadows Round 22 Artist Development Grantees
Hannah DeWitt

Hannah DeWitt

Age: 25

Pronouns: she/her/they

What is your art medium and how did you decide to pursue art as a career? 

I am interdisciplinary in medium with a focus on performative and interactive experiences. I began my art schooling as an art therapy major, hoping to help others use art as an expressive therapy. After creating many expressive and therapeutic works of studio art or “fine art” of my own, I discovered that my studio practice is not only a means of survival and coping but also effective at making expressive connections with others, which was my original motivation for studying art therapy, so I dropped the art therapy major and earned my MFA. I began making difficult works that confront my own traumas in ways that are not always easy to support. I started blurring the line between my private life and public art until my career became entangled with my mental health and lived traumas. The outpour was irrevocable and now my work is probably a bigger part of who I am as a person than most therapists would recommend. That being said, I’m committed to the bit.

You were awarded an Artist Development Grant, what are your plans for the grant? 

I am thrilled to report that I will travel to New York City during the Performa festival, where I will experience performance artwork as a viewer and meet other performance artists and experts. I look forward to networking and making as many connections as possible all through the 19-day festival.

Where would you like to see your art in 5 years? 

I would love to be performing in these festivals rather than only viewing them... I think that cities like NYC and Berlin might be receptive to my performances and to be surrounded by other performance artists for some time would be a formative experience. As an extreme ideal, I wish upon a star to have an art teaching job that is guaranteed to continue from one semester to the next and spend the rest of my time making art and performing around the world.

What would you like to see happen in Louisville for local arts and artists? 

I have observed that many art spaces are primarily concerned with the ability of an artwork to sell, which results in little space being made for things like conceptual performance art experiences. I want to see more attention granted to challenging artworks that are not easy to sell. This would promote unique and experimental work, which is being made in Louisville but not being paid enough attention to in my opinion.

Why does art matter to you? 

As I mentioned before, art is a means of survival and coping for me. I need to make art to process my life and experiences. I would be in a very dark place without it.

As Below, So Above by Shohei Katayama
As Below, So Above by Shohei Katayama

Shohei Katayama

Age:35 

Pronouns:He/him

What is your art medium and how did you decide to pursue art as a career?

I’m not dedicated to any specific medium. Lately, I’ve been experimenting with light, incorporating elements of architecturalinterventions, and using an assortment of sensors and motors in myinstallations. To be honest, my choice to pursue art came from my multitude of interests. Art, with its expansive field, allows me to explore many of these interests. It facilitates my understanding of diverse cultures, provides the opportunity to continually learn new

techniques, and fuels my love for challenges and perpetual learning. While I may not be a master in any one area, I have a wide breadth of skills. You can say I’m a master at being an amateur.

You were awarded an Artist Development Grant, what are your plans for the grant?

I’m intending to visit Venice, Italy, for the 2023 Architecture Biennale, “The Laboratory of the Future.” Additionally, my friend from Pittsburgh, Ian Brill, is showcasing his latest work at the Ragioni Techniche Gallery, which I’m excited to see.

Where would you like to see your art in 5 years?

I’d like to be more confident in the art I create while retaining my enthusiasm for continual learning, collaborating with experts from various fields, and frequently exhibiting my work. I’m not overly concerned with achieving fame; instead, I dream of a day when I can be content, no longer second-guessing my decisions.

What would you like to see happen in Louisville for local arts and artists?

My vision is for Louisville to become a dynamic and thought-provoking hub for experimental art that can elicit meaningful discourse. While I believe we already have a vibrant art scene, there appears to be friction among groups, possibly due to competition for limited opportunities. I would like to see an expansion in opportunities for experimental play and collaborative efforts, with support not just from art organizations but also from the city itself.

Why does art matter to you?

When I first came to the United States, I struggled to connect with people. This was likely due to a mix of my teenage hormones, language barriers, and most importantly, the stark cultural difference between Tokyo and Louisville. I often found solace in expressing myself through doodling and playing the piano. After graduating from Bellarmine University, I began to see art not merely as a means of self-expression but also as a tool to foster discussions on important social, political, and environmental issues. I felt an almost mission-like calling driving my passion. My late father was a creative soul and had a deep appreciation for the arts. His love for creativity has passed down to my siblings and myself, with all of us pursuing careers related to the arts. In his honor, I aim to continue creating work that contributes to my personal growth, reflects on our society and culture, captures the complexity of the human condition, and fosters empathy and connection.