If you haven't made it over to Eric Schindler Gallery for the Bio_DIVERSITY exhibit, don't miss your chance to see this unique gathering of art, architecture, and design inspired by nature. The show is curated by our own Chris Fultz of Fultz Architects, and continues through April 10th.
Comprehension of our relationship with nature, whether biological, elemental, or geographic, has been at the core of human expression since the first pictographs were carved millennia ago. Celebrating the diversity of Richmond’s creative culture, Bio_DIVERSITY is an assemblage of painting, sculpture, architecture, and furniture exploring the influence of nature in art and design.
For Chris Chase, who has several sculptures in the exhibit, "inserting recognizable imagery into the pieces allows me to begin to develop a kind of narrative that I had not had the means to do with formal work. My intention with the work is simply to engage my interests both sustained and fleeting, to tap both familiar personal themes and recurring images and a willingness to mix it up."
A long time resident of Richmond, Kevin's current work reflects his love for nature and a desire to highlight and counterbalance the excesses of scaled economies by using post-consumer material as the foundation for his art and sculpture. "As our economies grow our resources have shrunk. True sustainability can only happen when what we consume can be replaced at the same rate indefinitely."
Joe's recent works have become an outlet for his "personal distress concerning modern day land consumption and it's irreversible effects on the ever-shrinking natural world. The images are not specific locations, but a general critique regarding our practices as a whole."
Thea Duskin is the co-owner and curator of Ghostprint Gallery in Richmond, VA. Her multi-media artwork has appeared in several publications and been shown in Berlin, New York, Portland, and Virginia. She has also been a tattoo artist for 15 years, wherein she employs her background in traditional art to create original compositions that are deferential to the body. Her creative process begins with sketches and often a painting or collage progressing into multiple sessions of tattoo layering to produce the final piece.
Trained as an architect, Brian has worked in various fields of craft and fabrication such as cabinet, metal work and general construction. In San Diego, besides the development of a deep appreciation and relationship with the ocean and surfing, Brian worked with architect Lloyd Russell to help construct the “hand-made modern” R3 Triangle Building. From that experience he gained a deeper appreciation of the design/build process and redefined his notion of an architect. In 2008, Brian relocated back to his hometown of Richmond and combined his passions of craft and surfing and started Glide Skateboards where he makes surf inspired skateboards out of reclaimed wood flooring material.
A native of Virginia, Anthony calls Richmond home. After earning a BFA in Painting and Printmaking at Virginia Commonwealth University in 1999, Anthony moved to Providence, RI, where he joined the art community and started working with one of the area's most prominent woodworkers. There, his eye for design and detail in construction became apparent. Anthony now co-owns Polosko Custom Woodworks, which specializes in custom cabinetry and furniture focused on using environmentally sensitive materials and construction techniques.
Richmond-transplant James Polend, began his career path in furniture-making at Virginia Commonwealth University in 1998. The evolution of James’ design motivation and aesthetic developed into a clean conscientiousness of the materials and the spaces in which we live, work and play. After dedicating nearly 5 years at a local cabinet shop, developing and refining his woodworking skills, James joined with Anthony Osiol to form Polosko Custom Woodworks.
For the past seven years Daniel Rickey has been making furniture in North Carolina and Richmond, Virgina. He gets his inspiration largely from Danish furniture design and the infinite variations and characteristics of wood. Daniel has also cultivated a reputation for restoring mid-century modern furniture and antiques.
Amrit Singh & Rusty Morton
Acute sensitivity to design, collaborative spirit, and exploring multiple scales describes Amrit‘s approach. During his formative years he worked alongside professors to develop and construct a rammed earth house in Giles County Virginia. From 2009 to 2011 he taught a third year architecture studio where he focused on digital design and graphic representation. His leadership as a designer was recognized with acceptance into the 2011 Emerging Leaders for Architecture program through which he helped launch the 'What Do You See’ project, providing the vision for a community-based kiosk that solicits design proposals from the local citizenry. The piece on view is the result of collaboration between Amrit and another talented local craftsman, Rusty Morton.
Lisa Taranto is generally curious. A first generation American born into a nomadic family, she has learned to be observant and adaptive. Formally trained as an architect and a permaculture designer, she is continually awed by the elegant and flawless complexity found in natural systems. Her art is a dance between discovery of material & technique, and exploration of concepts.
Heide has an MFA in Painting from Virginia Commonwealth University, a BFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and studied at the Marchutz School of Art, Aix, France. Heide’s paintings have been shown in numerous solo and group shows, including shows at Stux Gallery and The American Academy of Arts and Letters in New York, and La Pilar Parra Galleria in Madrid. She is an Adjunct Professor of Art at the University of Richmond and the recipient of several awards and grants including the Pollock/Krasner Fellowship in 2011.
Charles Yeager is a Richmond based designer and craftsman. After receiving his masters degree from Rhode Island School of Design, Yeager moved to Richmond to teach woodworking and furniture design at VCU. During this time he started his business, Yeager Design/Fabrication, specializing in architectural fabrication and furniture. Yeager works with architects, other designers, and directly with clients, continually striving to create work that is of the highest quality in concept and execution.
More From the Curator
The artists and designers represented in Bio_DIVERSITY have been a source of inspiration to me and have been a considerable force in shaping Richmond’s identity as a creative center on the East Coast. A fundamental value of my creative process is cultivating collaborative relationships with local designers, artists, and craftsmen whose imprint can be seen in much of my built work.
The synthesis of land [nature] and form [design] is a hallmark of my work and the catalyst for the central narrative of the show. The best examples of this exploration can be seen in the National Donor Memorial at UNOS, Luck Stone Corporate Headquarters, the Starkey Residence, and Belvedere Gardens Mausoleum.
I want to thank the Eric Schindler Gallery for the opportunity to introduce my new practice to the creative community and to cook some barbecue. I want to acknowledge my good friends Amrit, Alex, and Kirsten for their unfaltering encouragement, guidance, and help during this process. Finally I wish to thank the artists and designers for believing in Bio_DIVERSITY and for trusting me with their inspirational work.