exhibition slideshow
Selections from the Gallery

Featuring the work of Joe Chesla, Lisa Colby, Jo Jasper Dean, Mark Florida, Ruth Reese, Emily Stremming, and Mark Weber

On View
Saturday March 15, 2014

Opening Gala
Saturday March 15, 2014
7:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m.

French artist Marcel Duchamp once quipped: “I don’t believe in art, I believe in artists.” PHD Gallery hosts seven artists who embody that fearless, pioneering spirit that drives them to create. Working in a variety of media, these artists are pursuing a singular vision as demonstrated by the arc of their work. Their disciplines include painting, ceramics, print making, photography and jewelry.

About the artists~

Joe Chesla received his MFA from Utah State University and has exhibited internationally. He worked as a preparator at The Walker Art Center in Kansas City, and as head preparator at Kemper Museum of Art in Kansas City. Chesla is also the recipient of numerous awards including Utah State University Arts Grant and Utah Arts Council Grant, John Morgan Fellowship, and the George B and Marie Eccles Caine Art Scholarship. He is a Professor at St. Louis Community College--Meramec, and heads the sculpture department where he coordinates the sculpture program.

Lisa Colby has been a working metalsmith for over twenty-five years. She received a BFA from Wayne State University and has work published in Lark Books 1,000 Rings and 500 Silver Jewelry Designs. She has taught at Penland School of Crafts, The Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts and is currently faculty at Craft Alliance.

Jo Jasper Dean is an artist living and working in St Louis, Missouri. She studied art at Fontbonne University and St Louis Community College and earned her Bachelor's Degree in Business Management from Maryville University. Her unique painting style and distinct visual voice has won her numerous spots in local and national group art shows including a 2012 Award of Excellence from Art St. Louis.

Mark Florida has been an artist and photographer in St. Louis for 25 years. The former engineering graduate is perhaps best known for his photographs of St. Louis landmarks and high profile events, including the statue of King Louis (under the Arch!), the Forest Park Balloon races, and the Botanical Gardens. Florida has worked as both a professional photographer and portrait painter, but now concentrates on doing fine art which comments on the times in which we live.

Ruth Reese explores the richness of porcelain and red earthenware in her functional ware and sculptural work. Reese has been published in 500 Plates, 500 Raku and Mourning: A Buddhist Ritual Comes to America. Exhibiting nationally, her work has been in shows such as Red Heat and Visions in Clay. Reese holds an MFA from Washington University and BA in English from Loyola University. Most recently an Artist in Residence at Craft Alliance, Reese teaches at St. Louis Community College and Maryville University.

Emily Stremming challenges the qualities and limitations of the photographic medium and the connotations that apply to the language of photography. The Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville (SIUE) graduate creates images that go against the notion of a photographs being a reproducible object. She creates archival pigment prints that are physically deconstructed, then reconstructed by literally cutting them to ribbons, and then employing a traditional weaving technique to put them back together.

Mark Weber received his B.F.A. degree from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and his M.F.A. degree from Washington University in St. Louis. He has participated in 22 solo exhibitions and over 50 group exhibitions. His work is in numerous public and private collections including the Nelson-Atkins Museum in Kansas City, Ralston Purina, Southwestern Bell, and Hunan Normal University in Changsa, China. Weber served as Professor and Chair of the Department of Art at St. Louis Community College-Forest Park for thirteen years prior to his current position as Professor and Visual and Performing Arts Department Chair at St. Louis Community College-Wildwood.

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