Art 365 is an exhibition from the Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition which offers five Oklahoma artists a year and $12,000 to create innovative artwork in collaboration with a nationally recognized curator. The artists worked with guest curator Raechell Smith for one year to create a body of original artwork for the exhibition, which opened February 28, 2014 at [Artspace] at Untitled in Oklahoma City. Art 365 will travel to the Arts & Humanities Council of Tulsa's Hardesty Arts Center in May 2014.
Exploring remote portions of our National Parks and wilderness areas, Cook will photograph these pristine locations and print the photographs large scale. He seeks to raise awareness of these areas, so inciting a love affair which can lead to further preservation efforts. Balancing the difficulty of hiking to these remote areas – encountering physical, mental and emotional challenges – with a love of the land, Cook captures places and moments that most will never experience with their own eyes.
Scents bring back memories. Aromas surprise and intrigue us. Motivated to explore the role of smell in our experience of places, Faubert will collect and distill material from five of Oklahoma’s distinct eco-regions. Previously working primarily in photography, Faubert has trained her nose so she can translate her experiences of Oklahoma through fragrances. In her research, Faubert has taken workshops from national olfactory experts, visited the first-ever scent exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art and developed a laboratory that would be the envy of many scientists.
As an Ethiopian immigrant to Oklahoma, Gulilat observed the abundant presence of churches in the state and grew curious about the racial, political and socioeconomic relationships within and around churches. Using aerial photography, he will document church buildings and their surrounding neighborhoods on Sunday mornings, considering what they can tell us about ourselves, our patterns, and relationships.
Alexandra Knox’s recent artwork has focused on discovering and preserving Ukrainian traditions through food. Exploring her heritage as a third generation Ukrainian-American, Knox traveled to the Ukraine to meet family members, conduct research, and gather artifacts. Faced with challenges such as language barriers and generational differences, Knox returned more confused about her Ukrainian heritage than ever before. Through food, installation and performance, Knox will investigate further her cultural identity and family history.
“What would my life be like if I had made different decisions?” “How will the decisions I make now impact my future?” These are questions that Romy Owens contemplates as she knits, stitch by stitch, a room-sized yarn installation. Spurred by her own musings about what life would have been like had she been a mother, Owens creates a warm, safe space for the audience to feel nurtured. Her time-intensive process corresponds to her invitation for visitors to reflect on their own life decisions.
Raechell Smith is the chief curator and founding director of the H&R Block Artspace at the Kansas City Art Institute. A dynamic contemporary art venue with a strong teaching mission, the Artspace has been recognized for excellence in architectural design and visual art programming within the region, since it opened in 1999.
Smith has organized exhibitions and public art projects presenting work by regional, national, and international artists including David Shrigley, Ghada Amer, Shirin Neshat, Wenda Gu, Lee Boroson, Alexis Rockman, Jenny Holzer, and Vik Muniz.
Prior to her time at the Kansas City Art Institute, Smith served as Curatorial Assistant and Education Specialist for Modern and Contemporary Art at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City. She was also Project Manager for Electormediascope, a time-based series of contemporary art in new media.