Mentored Projects & Student Work

I find working with students to be very rewarding.  There is something contagious about their energy and excitement especially when they learn a new process, medium, insight or connection.  I am never sure how much credit I can take for a student's creations or accomplishments, but it is always a pleasure to share it with them.  My role is that of a mentor, facilitator, and motivator.  I recognize that there can be a long delay from the spark of inspiration, where one is filled with hope and energy, to the actual completion of a work of art.  I strive to keep the fire burning in each student as they strive to complete their vision of what they want to communicate or share with others.

Fall 2016 I mentored art education graduate students in creating reliquaries based on specific locations. These pieces work at the intersections of collecting, collage, and place. The questions posed were, what do we collect and why do we collect?  The work created reflects the desire to magically transform objects or imbue them with meaning. I am happy with the diversity of work that came from the students.

Installation shots of the students' work.

American Banking
approx. 5" x 13"x 15" tall
This was an independent study project with Adam, an illustrator who also had taken 2D design from me.  I worked with him step by step in planning and constructing this 'frame' for his illustration. Excellent execution.

Some Proof 2' x 100' paper installation
Installation shot of BFA final show. Sometimes the simplest thing can be very complex. I met with Betsy and assisted her in installing this scroll in an engaging way. The paper has one phrase written on it repeated thousands of times and it took her over one hundred hours to write. It turned out to be a beautiful and compelling show.

Sorry For Your Loss
Installation shot of BFA final show. I met with Barlow, a graphic design major, many times to help her select the best way to approach this installation. The book Art and Artifact: The Museum as Medium was a great resource. I was very impressed with her final execution of this concept that she was emotionally tied to. 

Day by Day
Installation shot of BFA final show.  I had Sam as a student in 2D design and He asked for a lot of input on how to install this show. We met several times and I assisted him in selecting the works for display and how to place them to best communicate his ideas to his audience. Love his use of newspapers as a medium.

Hair We Are 
Jessica's installation/performance was intriguingHer desire was to create an environment prone to intimacy through cutting and styling the hair of the viewer/participant. She documented each visit to her mini salon with a printed card that contained either a piece of her hair or that of the sitter.  The card was hung in a grid on the wall and over the two week duration of the show the documentation grew. Jessica's desire was rooted in the childhood experience of her mother working on her hair and the fond memories she carries of those moments.

In 2011 I visited VCU and was impressed with Locker 50B Gallery and waned to create a miniature gallery at BYU. SMart Spaces (student managed art spaces) are the result of these efforts.  This space Measures 78" tall x 32" wide x 34" deep with an interior space that is 18" tall x 22" wide x 30" deep with a wood floor and inset lighting. This self contained gallery is portable and has moved to different buildings on campus.

Property of Jared Greenleaf - 2012
For this installation I worked closely with students curators as they scanned Jared's sketchbook pages, printed them, and then mounted them to foam core. The images wrapped from the back wall of the gallery on the side walls to the exterior and back of the column. samples of his sketchbook pages are below.

Watch the World Collapse
 MFA exhibition  Jared

I met with Jared often working out the logistics of this video installation, two projections around twenty feet wide each.  Much of the raw footage was filmed during a student trip I organized to Capitol Reef National Park.


From 2010-13 I organized and received grants to take student groups to southern UT to study the connection between the landscape and our identity.  Each excursion involved between 10-20 students from varying disciplines and a few faculty.  Students and all made art, camped, hiked, explored, interviewed people from the areas visited and did guided research.  The result was an exhibition, usually a few months after the trip, where work created in response to their experience was displayed. Trips were taken to North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park & Kanab area, Capitol Reef National Park, Escalante area & Bryce Canyon National Park, Zion National Park & Toroweap.  These were incredible trips for me and the students.

Some Student Comments:

"I feel this field trip experience will benefit not only myself, but also my future students, as it has given me new insights into incorporating art with the beautiful landscapes of Utah!"
"When I approached the edge of the Grand Canyon at Toroweap, I experienced the sublime for myself and finally understood what these European writers had been describing. The breadth of the canyon stretched from one end of my sight to another and the depth of the canyon dominated my entire view. I felt a sensation of grandeur, awe, and terror run through my whole body as I stood on the cliff edge attempting to take it all in."  

"I was pleased to be able to work with people outside of my own department, which doesn’t happen too often. Their fresh insights and different perspectives caused me to rethink and reshape the way I approach art-making." 

"No other setting could have provided what this setting and trip did for me, and I am sure, the others that went.  Not only was it good for the creative process and a great jump start for some new art, but it allowed for the collaboration of students and professors unlike any that the classroom provide."

"The landscape came alive again and I began to see it in a new and more personal light; I began to see it as you would a human being with complex layers and personality that surface only after hours, days, or even years of conversation and observation. I was able to abandon the tourist state-of-mind and approach the land as a student. It is a slow process, but I have begun to apply this new philosophy to my life and it has brought the natural world alive again to me." 

"Accompanying faculty as well as students from other art departments on an art focused trip steered my art making practice in a direction that I have not yet wavered from and has made all of the difference in my work."

Nate's illustration Hiking Dangers

 Davey's Lump Sum 4' x 8' reclaimed nails on painted dry wall

 Chad's My Piece of Realestate cast plaster approx. 10" x 24" x 20"

Sara's Coral Pink Dunes oil paints and sand 3' x 4' x 6"

 Tiana's composite landscape 3' x 8' archival print

 Installation shots of shows from the trips

Drawing Samples:

Evilution - BFA final show
Ivan 2008 Installation varied in size depending on room. Ants 6" x 9" x 14"

The student cast his first army ant soldier in my foundry course. The piece was successful enough that continued to make 30-40 of them to go with the turret he built in in the fabrication course. The final installation was supervised by Brian and it turned our great with the turret motorized and the gun barrel raising and lowering.

Carolyn was a grad student that I worked with in creating this installation.  She received funding to travel to the AZ border and take footage of interviews with border patrol officers, immigrants, and family members. This was a powerful display of a pressing issue.

Evening Gown - this dress is made from recycled plastic grocery bags, incredible! This one piece was a semester long project for this student.  Her dedication payed off and the work was published in an Arizona based magazine.

Blight of the Pine Beetle - BFA final show
Holly 2006 approx. 12' x 8' x 15' tall room installation Logs, soil and audio.

The Masks We Wear - BFA final show
Lucas 2006

This show included a hand built cabinet with colored silicone masks, one free standing plaster figure and one plaster torso on forged rods and silicone masks.

Viewer Defined Reality -BFA final show
Katie 2006

This installation included powder coated aluminum balloons (above), a light bulb on a three tier pedestal with a timer, and a mounted door with a flat screen behind the window displaying scenes from the students front door. The student included audio tracks at each station where two voices were speaking at once, one telling you that what you saw in front of you was real and the other questioning the nature of reality. Beautifully executed and conceptually sound.

 Direct Carving: 



Assemblage/ Mixed Media Box Assignment:


 Relief Cast in Different Materials:



No comments:

Post a Comment