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ARTIST BIOS

Jake Blake pulls the viewer into an intimate look at the grotesque in hopes of imparting a sense of normalcy and even beauty upon otherwise unnerving subjects. The hard, antiseptic lighting draws the twisted figures from their textured shadows, which are left alone to pulse with a dreamlike shimmer. Unable to hide in the darkness, the carnal figures of sex and death are propped up with an insistent presence and awkward honesty. Sometimes mundanely macabre, at other times, painfully personal, the subjects are all treated as realities from which we hide or dismiss as abnormal. Yet, the figures demand a sense of respect beyond the obvious intimacy behind their careful rendering. Their grotesqueness is sublimated in their refusal to hide; in their insistence to be front and center not in order to shock, but simply to exist. Jake recently received his BFA from The School of Visual Arts, he lives and works in New York City.

Rachel Burgess grew up in Massachusetts.  She received a B.A. in Literature from Yale University in 2004, and an M.F.A. in Illustration from the School of Visual Arts in 2007.  She currently lives in Manhattan, where she divides her time between teaching, illustrating and printmaking. Her work appears in galleries throughout the New York area, including the International Print Center of New York in Manhattan, the Edward Hopper House and Museum in Nyack, and the Monmouth Museum in New Jersey.  Ms. Burgess has had solo exhibits in New York and in Maine; she has also exhibited overseas at the Pyramida Center for Contemporary Art in Israel.   She is the recipient of several awards. Her prints have been recognized by publications such as CMYK Magazine, 3x3 Magazine of Contemporary Illustration, the Society of Illustrators, and the New York Society of Etchers.  Her illustrations are part of the publication collection at the Whitney Museum of Art.

Seth Calder was born and raised in Salt Lake City Utah.  At the age of 15 he left high school and began to develop his artistic tone, working initially under no guide, with acrylic and mixed medium.  His most recent work is done in oil, and appears at first to be a reaction to some enthusiasm of the current era, but ambiguities abound in order be true to a sense that cannot find a vent through direct means, insinuating that a fixed idea is in opposition to what is being signified. He now lives and produces work in New York City.

Lisa Fiore is a young emerging artist, fascinated by color and shape relation. Fiore is constantly exploring her connection with paint and the way she applies it to canvas, aiming to combine elements of bold and delicate brushwork in every piece. She finds inspiration in both objects and nature, which display a humble beauty with their infinite patterns and color variations. Fiore received her BFA from School of Visual Arts and currently lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.

Brett Harvey has a primary interest is in using the mediums of oil paint and water based clay to make paintings and sculptures to depict the implicit beauty of the human figure.  This process is a means to better understand humanistic and spiritual ideas, and inspire the same thoughts in others. Brett lives and works in New York City. He graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the New Hampshire Institute of Art in 2008, and a Master of Fine Arts from the New York Academy of Art in 2011.

Lannie Hart was born in Jacksonville, Florida and raised in Lawrenceville Virginia. She holds her BFA from The Virginia Commonwealth University. In 1987 she opened “Lannie Hart Design”, a packaging design studio in New York City. She taught Polymer sculpture at Brookfield Center for Crafts (Brookfield, CT). For the past nine years she has dedicated all her time to her art and is currently studying steel sculpture at the Silvermine Guild. Lannie has varied interests spanning crafts to fine art. She has managed to combine all these media into one voice. She has shown her work at The Wayne Art Center, Wayne PA, Freedman Gallery, PA, Pelham Center for the Arts, The Katonah Museum, Katonah NY, The Virginia Museum of Fine Art, Richmond VA, Museum of American Crafts, NYC, Viridian Gallery, NYC, Silvermine Gallery, New Canaan, CT, Hampton Roads Gallery, Southampton, NY, among others. She currently lives and works in Sleepy Hollow, NY. Lannie Hart is a member of the SOHO20 Gallery, NYC since 2009.

Christina Justiz was born and raised in New York. She graduated from Sarah Lawrence College in 2008, where she concentrated in Religious Philosophy & Visual Arts. Christina has apprenticed under many artists of diverse styles and philosophies, gaining an array of invaluable skills in live castings, mosaics, and woodworking, among others. She has participated in solo and group exhibitions in and around New York City. Her artwork is featured in various public and private collections throughout the United States and Europe. Currently, Christina's piece "Sons II" is on loan to I.M.Pei Science Center in Wallingford Connecticut for extended display. Christina lives and works in Manhattan, NY.

Thomas Legaspi is a representational painter, his work centers on portraiture, figure painting and landscapes. This New York City artist has studied academic classical training from The New York Academy of Art in 2001. The artist has exhibited in various shows and galleries in New York, New Jersey, Illinois, Kentucky, and the State Museum of Kazakhstan. Currently, he also teaches art at St. John's University, New York.

Yuri Leonov is originally from St. Petersburg, Russia, he has received his BFA from The School of Visual Arts and currently lives and works in New York City. He often creates series of images, and approaches his projects from a formal standpoint of composing the picture plane in an abstract sense. Surface treatment is a significant element of the process: attention is distributed throughout it on the basis of each square inch. At the core Leonov’s art is triggered by a personal emotional reaction/response, however it often tends to pull from art historical references. Content wise the central theme of his work is the relationship of human beings with their surroundings, and our attempt to manipulate the natural in order to avoid our human limitations. The conceptual content of the images is linked with the formal qualities through the juxtaposition of the tight and precise mark-making and a rather lose and intuitive one.

Haley Litzinger is a Mixed Media artist and lives and works in the greater Akron Ohio area.  She grew up in the village of Peninsula which is centered within the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. The historical town and its surroundings has been a major influence for Litzinger’s work. She received her BFA from Kent State University with a concentration in drawing. She was a finalist for the Cleveland museum of contemporary art’s Wendy L. Moore emerging artist series for 2008. She has recently completed an internship with artist, Olga Ziemska, assisting her with a public installation for Kent State University. Her work has been exhibited and sold throughout Ohio and the surrounding area.

Tania Marmolejo Born in The Dominican Republic, Tania began her studies as a graphic designer in Norway, and finished her studies in Fine Arts and Illustration at the Parsons School of Design in New York. Her commercial work included animation designs for MTV, PBS and Scholastic Books among others. She kept some of the cartoon stylization in her paintings, which usually presented women and girls as a subject. Her work grew increasingly personal and with an intimate point of view as her paintings became her main focus. Tania's paintings of women have been included in several Non for Profit projects and events, such as the Vagina Monologues. Tania continues to exhibit her paintings in New York City and internationally, and considers New York her home.

Heather Morgan a painter and bon vivant, was born in Staten Island in 1973. She completed her B.F.A. in painting at Boston University in 1996, making up the “expressionist wing” of the school for the arts and haunting the underground music scene. She received her M.F.A. in painting/printmaking at Yale University in 1999. Morgan spent five years in East Berlin cultivating fluency in German, exhibiting and publishing work with Karoline Mueller at Ladengalerie, one of Berlin’s oldest galleries and a proponent of representational artists of the former GDR. Upon returning to the United States, Heather maintained a studio in Boston and then New York, and was most recently represented by Jack the Pelican Presents in Brooklyn. She currently lives and exhibits in New York.

Eileen Murphy received a BA from Mount Holyoke College in 2003 and an MFA from Pratt Institute in 2006. She lives and works in Brooklyn. Although she is a figurative painter, Eileen believes that all images are abstractions. Her current work is of interiors with which she is deeply familiar, the places that she sees her everyday life.

Douglas Newton has been actively painting for over thirty years. His style has evolved from surrealistic landscapes of the American suburbs to his present, more realistic, paintings of candy, food, household objects and toys. He graduated from Stanford University, and then attended Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles, to prepare for a career in advertising design. He is now painting full time, and has had one person shows in Princeton, New Jersey and Woodstock, New York, as well as participated in many group shows in galleries and museums. His paintings can be found in many private collections. Newtonlives and works in Fort Greene, Brooklyn. He is married to Kathleen Migliore-Newton, also an artist.

Anna Souvorov paints a state of stillness and posit seemingly familiar objects in a non-space, whose palpability is largely challenged as such and they become fugitives of themselves. In the black series the objects are mirages falling away into the vast impenetrable darkness of mirrors.  These scenes or objects are thereby suspended in their own kind of ontological puzzle.  The painting lives in the emergence and deconstruction of these figments wittingly reclaiming its initial stake at a captured pathos. Born in Moscow, 1983.  Anna attended The Cooper Union (2004) and earned her M.F.A from the School of Visual Arts (2011).  She is currently pursuing the art of byzantine iconography at the Prosopon School in NYC.

Louis Spano was born and raised in New Jersey. Spano received his B.F.A from the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan of 2010. He currently lives and works in his hometown of Wyckoff. Spano’s ‘Screen’ series is an introduction to what his work generally discusses. Each image is a portrait of close friends, family and the artist himself lost conceptually in a screen, each individual representing their own personal reaction to their predicament.

Sunny Taylor is an abstract painter, who has exhibited her work extensively throughout the US and abroad.  In 2005, Sunny received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Brigham Young University (BYU) in Provo, UT and her Master of Fine Arts degree in 2007 from the Ohio State University in Columbus, OH.  She currently teaches as an assistant professor of studio arts at BYU and continues to exhibit her artwork on an international platform.

Leah Yerpe decontextualizes the human figure in highly choreographed drawings and paintings.  Bodies are multiplied in different poses, twisting, floating and falling on a ground purged of contextualizing marks. She believes that art is an exploration of contradictions and raw emotions that need to communicate the intangible.  Her models are given free reign to move their bodies without direction in a sort of immediate, improvised dance.  This looseness contrasts with the fastidious technique of the artist, where elegance and grace is infused with subtle dissonance.  Leah received an MFA in painting from Pratt Institute in 2009 and currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.  Her work has been featured in numerous shows and discussed in publications such as PMc Magazine, Visual Overture, and Studio Visit. An important part of the human condition is a desire for resolution, for a way to put the incongruities of life into order. Despite our efforts, sometimes the closer we seem to approach a conclusion, the more elusive it proves. Yet our perception is left a little richer for the struggle we envision in the drawings and paintings of Leah Yerpe.

Raquel by Rachel Burgess Portrait Study by Thomas Legaspi Spurgrapithaean by leah Yerpe Satellite Playground by Haley Litzinger Krouse by Louis Spano Ball by Brett Harvey Winterscape by Lisa Fiore Slippers by Anna Souvorov Winged Virgin by Lannie Hart Two Cribs by Seth Calder Untitled by Christina Justiz Studio by Eileen Murphy Synthesis by Sunny Taylor Untitled by Jake Blake Dark Chocolate by Douglas Newton Analysis of a Last Chance by Tania Marmolejo Old Glory by Heather Morgan Untitled by Yuri Leonov