Boy Scout Carving Badge Started Artist Rusty Johnson

Guest Author: Richard Wills, Tulsa Art Studio Tour Committee Member
Rusty Johnson, Mama’s Gone Fishing, Carved wood 
For Rusty Johnson, “there is nothing like wood, it is very unforgiving.” It is with this medium that he has learned to carve so many wonderful sculptures. With recent awards from the magazine Woodcarving Illustrated,Johnson shows his mastery of 3-dimensional work. 
Tulsa Art Studio Tour artist Rusty Johnson (photo by Gigi Bontemps)
Johnson first learned to carve while obtaining his woodcarving merit badge as a Boy Scout (in 1959), and he quickly realized that he had a talent for it, a talent that only later in life he would fully realize. With over 13 years of professional carving experience, it is easy to see why Johnson has been accepted into the International Wood Carver’s Congress and received such accolades. 
Meet & see the working studio of Johnson along with 10 other artists on April 21-22, noon until 5 pm on the Tulsa Art Studio Tour. Read more in Art Focus Oklahomamagazine or purchase tickets here www.TulsaArtStudioTour.org
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Performing Academically: Mark Wittig

Guest Author: Richard Wills, Tulsa Art Studio Tour Committee Member
Mark Wittig, Developing Fluency, Installation & Performance, 2012. 

Mark Wittig, like many small children, was diagnosed with Dyslexia, a learning disability that can and often haunts the individual.  Wittig chose to face his difference and in doing so has become a champion of finding better methods of teaching those similar to him. 

Mark Wittig, Books Belong To, Digital Print, 2012. 
With a varied background in architecture, photography, and painting, Wittig finds himself creating both installation and performance art. His goal is to interact with the public by bringing them into a more intimate dialogue about learning disabilities, and how our education system treats those afflicted with them.

Meet & see the working studio of Wittig along with 10 other artists on April 21-22, noon until 5 pm on the Tulsa Art Studio Tour. Read more in Art Focus Oklahomamagazine or purchase tickets here www.TulsaArtStudioTour.org

Raisin’ Cain: Tate Wittenberg

Guest Author: Laura Reese, OVAC Intern

Cain’s Ballroom is an historic venue and an icon of the music scene in Oklahoma. Tate Wittenberg hopes to capture the magic and tell the untold tale of this legendary location. Wittenberg’s film Raisin’ Cain will chronicle the history of Cain’s Ballroom as a place of convergence for musical talent from all over the world.

“Cain’s Ballroom is the eye of the needle that measures all who pass through it and remains as popular as ever, hosting the biggest acts in music from around the world,” said Wittenberg, who grew up around Cain’s. Wittenberg’s passion for Cain’s is clear; it was his gateway to the music world during his formative years growing up in Tulsa and Claremore

Goals for Raisin’ Cain include showing the unique experience that Cain’s Ballroom has offered and how influential is has been. Wittenberg said he hopes the film will show Oklahoma, if not the nation, the important role that Tulsa, especially Cain’s Ballroom, has played in the role of the music industry.

Wittenberg was a chosen for a Creative Projects Grant from OVAC to help him complete his project. You can see a teaser and find out more info on Raisin’ Cain at www.raisincainmovie.com. The project is projected to be completed at the end of 2012, and Wittenberg is anticipated to show it at Circle Cinema as well as Cain’s Ballroom itself.


The Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition invests in artists’ project through grants for growing careers, creative projects and exceptional continuing education. The next application deadline is April 16. Find guidelines and application here

Healing Through Art: Sharon Allred

Guest Author: Richard Wills, Tulsa Art Studio Tour Committee Member

Sharon Allred, Reflecting 1916, Mixed Media on Canvas, 3″6×36″

Sharon Allred‘s passion for the arts and career as a cardiac nurse has led her to the Art of Healing program. The focus of this program is to provide an artistic outlet for patients so that they can better cope with their hospital stay and aid in recovery. 

Tulsa Art Studio Tour artist Sharon Allred (photo by Joey Frisillo)
Allred, trained as an artist-in-residence with the NYC Creative Center, has developed an artistic style that some people say is reflective of art therapy. The many layers or texture, color and motifs present in her artwork allows the viewer to delve deeply into their emotions while concurrently searching for a hidden image. With organic, intuitive movements, Allred’s creative process takes base reference image and transforms it into a masterpiece comprised of many individual elements. 

The Tulsa Art Studio Tour will open the doors of 11 Tulsa artists’ studios. Visitors will experience the creative processes and meet the artists on April 21-22 from noon until 5 p.m. Learn more or purchase tickets here www.TulsaArtStudioTour.org


Reexamining Interactive Technologies: Brent Richardson

Guest Author: Laura Reese, OVAC Intern

Brent Richardson, Mutual Concessions,
1941 radio, audio, coin receptacle, 42x17x17. 

Brent Richardson

Norman

What was your concepts and inspiration for these pieces?
Culture has embraced various intangible ways of life, such as: email, online banking, Facebook and videogames, just to name a few.  While these innovative technologies show promise for a more advanced future, with them come numerous negative effects on the simpler lives lived before our current digital age. The art I create aims to highlight the tension between the positive aspects of technology, and the inevitable problems also found within these same systems. 

Are these works interactive?
These works are interactive, and it is the interaction that activates the concept of both piece.
Brent Richardson, Information Wants to Be Free,
Computer program, Apple ii, arcade button, 40x17x16. 
What are the advantages of working media like this?
My favorite part about working with technology, especially interactive technology, is that each person assess the piece twice, once before the interaction and once after. The outcome creates an internal dialogue between the preconceived idea about the artwork and the informed view of the artwork. The real beauty is in the dialogue, because it places the viewer as a key ingredient in the concept. 

Where else can audiences see your artwork?
Currently I also have work in a show in Waco, TX at the Croft Gallery. The show is titled, The Art of Reading, and will be on display through the month of March. I also have a website, brentrich.com.


View, purchase and experience Oklahoma’s emerging young artists’ work at Momentum on March 9 & 10 in the Farmer’s Public Market at 311 S. Klein Ave in Oklahoma City 

Engendered Craft: Margaret Kinkeade


Examining gender roles in craft, learn more about Margaret Kinkeade’s artwork in this video


Kinkeade is a Momentum Spotlight artist.  You can read more about her in this Art Focus Oklahoma article


Kinkeade’s project will debut along with artwork by 86 other young artists at Momentum on March 9 & 10 in the Farmer’s Public Market at 311 S. Klein Ave in Oklahoma City 

Cows, Art & Picnics: Samantha Lamb




Combining farming and art making, see Samantha Lamb in action in this video


Lamb is a Momentum Spotlight artist.  You can read more about her in this Art Focus Oklahoma article or in this blog profile


Lamb’s project will debut along with artwork by 86 other young artists at Momentum on March 9 & 10 in the Farmer’s Public Market at 311 S. Klein Ave in Oklahoma City