2015 High School Student Show & Congressional Competition


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Lauren Simoneaux’s “A Mother’s Love” (detail)

The Schmidt Art Center’s 13th annual High School Student Show and Congressional Competition is now open, March 26 – April 9.

Over 140 works of art are featured by talented area high school students.

Participating High Schools:

Althoff Catholic High School
Belleville Township High School East
Belleville Township High School West
Carbondale Community High School
Carterville High School
Cobden High School
Collinsville High School
Columbia High School
Dongola Unit School
Gibault Catholic High School
Highland High School
Lebanon High School
Marion High School
Marissa High School
Mascoutah High School
O’Fallon Township High School
Steeleville High School
Triad High School
Valmeyer High School

 

 

2015 SWIC Art Faculty Show – Interview #7


Our exhibition of artwork by the art faculty of Southwestern Illinois College is now open through February 26th. Sculpture, painting, ceramics, drawing, digital images, photography, and mixed media all show the diversity and talent of the faculty artists. 

The faculty is not spared from our intern Kailey’s interviews. Below, Don Bevirt answers her questions.

Don Bevirt's "Technological Singularity", digital drawing

Don Bevirt’s “Technological Singularity”, digital drawing

When did you know the arts were what you wanted to do, long-term?
I have always wanted to create images, even as a very young man I made photographs.

What inspires you the most?
I really enjoy the act of photography that is the capture of the image and the translation to paper. I try very hard to “see” with different eyes.

What is your current favorite medium?
I have been using my iPhone and really am intrigued by the spontaneity!

When you’re working, what do you listen to, if anything?
Usually Classic Rock or Cool Jazz

What piece are you most proud of?
I am not finished yet, so I like various aspects of most of my images.

Not to be morbid, but what would you like to be remembered for?
Being the best I can be. Artist, husband, father, friend…

Have you ever regretted making something and showing it?
No! If I show it I like it!

Don Bevirt's "Clearing Storm, Lake Carlyle,"  photographic digital print

Don Bevirt’s
“Clearing Storm, Lake Carlyle,”
photographic digital print

What is the best comment you’ve ever received?
That some appreciate my art!

The worst?
For someone to make no comment at all.

What would you like to accomplish within the next five years?
Extend my vision and grow as an artist!

What’s your go-to snack when you’re working?
Coffee!

If you could be anyone (Seriously, anyone. Past/present/future/nonexistent/existent. You get the idea.) who would you be and why?
Edward Weston! He had a singular purpose to his life and work.

Thanks again to Don for answering our questions!

Posted by Jessica Mannisi, assistant curator

2015 SWIC Art Faculty Show – Interview #6


Our exhibition of artwork by the art faculty of Southwestern Illinois College is now open through February 26th. Sculpture, painting, ceramics, drawing, digital images, photography, and mixed media all show the diversity and talent of the faculty artists. 

The faculty is not spared from our intern Kailey’s interviews. Below, Shawn Niebruegge answers her questions.

Shawn Niebruegge's "Cup of Water", pastel

Shawn Niebruegge’s “Cup of Water”, pastel

When did you know the arts were what you wanted to do, long-term?
I started falling in love with art in high school.  In college, I was pursuing psychology for the first couple years before I decided to dive completely into art.

What inspires you the most?
Fear.

What is your current favorite medium?
Oil paint with copal medium.

When you’re working, what do you listen to, if anything?
I have a huge collection of music; I put on what suits my mood. Often it is something that makes me move: grunge, thrash, punk, techno, etc. My all time favorite for the darkroom is Aphex Twin’s “Selected Ambient Works, Volume II”, and for painting/drawing it’s Mystery Machine’s “Glazed”.

What piece are you most proud of? 
My graduate thesis work remains a strong body of work after all these years. It was shown originally in 2000.

Not to be morbid, but what would you like to be remembered for?
I have no idea. Most of the time I prefer not to be noticed.

Have you ever regretted making something and showing it?
All the time. I experiment a lot; what seems good at the moment has more to do with the experience of making it than does it mean the work is actually good.  I prefer to live with a piece for a bit before I show it; it gives me time to figure out if it’s worth showing.  I don’t always get that opportunity.

What is the best comment you’ve ever received?
“People are going to want to kill you for what you do.”

The worst?
Silence.

Shawn Niebruegge's "Pillar of Fire", colored pencil

Shawn Niebruegge’s “Pillar of Fire”, colored pencil

What would you like to accomplish within the next five years?
Mainly, more art works.  I have recently been revisiting the work that made up my graduate thesis show and hope to show an expanded version of it.  There was a lot of work that was made in the run up to it, and a lot that was made in the years after.  So little of it has ever been seen.  It is a body of work that spans 20+ years.

What’s your go-to snack when you’re working?
Does tea count? There’s always tea!

If you could be anyone (Seriously, anyone. Past/present/future/nonexistent/existent. You get the idea.) who would you be and why?
A better version of myself. I don’t know who else to be.  I like who I am, but I’ve certainly done many things I wish I hadn’t.

Thanks again to Shawn for answering our questions!

2015 SWIC Art Faculty Show – Interview #5


Our exhibition of artwork by the art faculty of Southwestern Illinois College is now open through February 26th. Sculpture, painting, ceramics, drawing, digital images, photography, and mixed media all show the diversity and talent of the faculty artists. 

The faculty is not spared from our intern Kailey’s interviews. Below, Paula McAteer answers her questions.

Paula McAteer's "Untitled", clay, paint, skull, pearl, ribbon

Paula McAteer’s “Untitled ” (detail), clay, paint, skull, pearl, ribbon

When did you know the arts were what you wanted to do, long-term?
I think I always knew.  Some of my earliest memories are of making things.  I used to go around the house and find things that interested me and set them up in a pleasing way.  I had no idea at the time that I was creating a still life.

What inspires you the most?
I find the figure to be the most inspiring and as corny as it sounds, the human condition.  I’m drawn to people’s stories and what transforms them.  I’m also drawn to nonfiction, documentaries, high fashion, medieval sculpture, nature, and fantasy.

What is your current favorite medium?
Clay

When you’re working, what do you listen to, if anything?
I don’t have a favorite artist; it just has to have a certain atmospheric sound. Occasionally I have Netflix on, but it just turns into background noise.

What piece are you most proud of?
I don’t think I have one. That’s why I keep doing it.

Not to be morbid, but what would you like to be remembered for? Tenacity

Paula McAteer's "Gloves", oil on board

Paula McAteer’s “Gloves”, oil on board

Have you ever regretted making something and showing it?
Yes.

What is the best comment you’ve ever received?
Any comment that is genuine, constructive criticism.  I really value it.

The worst?
Any comment about my physical appearance.  I find the topic boring.

What would you like to accomplish within the next five years?
I’m really looking forward to exploring sculpture and drawing. I also have a solo show in the works at McKendree University, which is exciting.

What’s your go-to snack when you’re working?
I drink a copious amount of coffee and hot tea. I used to snack on pretzels and red vines but I gave it up.

If you could be anyone (Seriously, anyone. Past/present/future/nonexistent/existent. You get the idea.) who would you be and why?
The President of the United States.  (seriously)

Thanks again to Paula for answering our questions!

Posted by Jessica Mannisi, assistant curator

2015 SWIC Art Faculty Show – Interview #4


Our exhibition of artwork by the art faculty of Southwestern Illinois College is now open through February 26th. Sculpture, painting, ceramics, drawing, digital images, photography, and mixed media all show the diversity and talent of the faculty artists. 

The faculty is not spared from our intern Kailey’s interviews. Below, Brad Eilering answers her questions.

Brad Eilering's 'Metropolis",  pine, museum board, task board, fiberglass screen, paper, aluminum

Brad Eilering’s ‘Metropolis”, pine, museum board, task board, fiberglass screen, paper, aluminum

When did you know the arts were what you wanted to do, long-term?
Immediately after visiting the Musée Rodin in the spring, 2011, I knew my connection to fine art was deeper than superficial.

 

What inspires you the most?
Artists that explore their passions through hard work and dedication inspire me to advance.

 

What is your current favorite medium?
My artistic practice includes drawing as an investigation of form/value then advancing the work through sculpting or painting. Currently, I am sculpting the figurative form in clay and casting in plaster.

 

When you’re working, what do you listen to, if anything?
This depends entirely on my level of concentration. Beginning with investigation of form/value – no music, total concentration on comprehending the form in the round and the layout of the composition. Blocking in the forms – still no music, yet beginning to have fun. Bringing the totality of the work together – at this point the work is totally enjoyable and I often listen to music to suite my mood: the Killers, REM, the Shins, Tom Petty, Pink, etc.

 

What piece are you most proud of?
The last work to be sold always makes me the proudest.

Brad Eilering's "The man on top of the mountain did not fall there", gel transfer, watercolor, ink & acrylic paint on Arches

Brad Eilering’s “The man on top of the mountain did not fall there”, gel transfer, watercolor, ink & acrylic paint on Arches

 

Not to be morbid, but what would you like to be remembered for?
As an excellent instructor with a genuine passion for learning, whose multi-disciplined artistic abilities have been an inspiration to many.

 

Have you ever regretted making something and showing it?
Never, I always work to advance my abilities and if someone doesn’t appreciate the work they simply fail to comprehend the significance. This is where communication (artist’s statements, titles, presentations) come into play. At the same time, I accept criticism, as an integral part of learning.

 

What is the best comment you’ve ever received?
In architectural school, I had an instructor literally destroy a sculpture during class, only to later praise the solutions that are no longer with us!
The worst?
The same experience felt like the worst, at the moment my work was destroyed.

 

What would you like to accomplish within the next five years?
I would like to address the challenges of our time through public engagement on the regional level through sculptural exhibition. Yearly goals: to advance my portfolio with 6 sculptures, 10 paintings and 2 sketchbooks.

 

What’s your go-to snack when you’re working?
Protein bars and plenty of water.

 

If you could be anyone (Seriously, anyone. Past/present/future/nonexistent/existent. You get the idea.) who would you be and why?
I choose to be myself, and incorporate the best lessons from all sources; for what lies ahead may be history in the making!

Thanks again to Brad for answering our questions!

Posted by Jessica Mannisi, assistant curator

2015 SWIC Art Faculty Show – Interview #3


Our exhibition of artwork by the art faculty of Southwestern Illinois College is now open through February 26th. Sculpture, painting, ceramics, drawing, digital images, photography, and mixed media all show the diversity and talent of the faculty artists. 

The faculty is not spared from our intern Kailey’s interviews. Below, Cory Sellers answers her questions.

Cory Seller's "Portrait of a Madwoman", oil on canvas

Cory Seller’s “Portrait of a Madwoman”, oil on canvas

When did you know the arts were what you wanted to do, long-term?
During my undergrad work at McKendree.

What inspires you the most?
Drawing from nature.

What is your current favorite medium?
Oil paint.

When you’re working, what do you listen to, if anything?
Classical or Jazz if anything. Usually nothing.

What piece are you most proud of?
A two panel painting which was an oil painting, 108″ x 120,” titled “Personage.” This painting was a result of over a hundred sketches in a variety of mediums. In 2011 “Personage,” showed at the Hunter College Times Square Gallery in NYC for a College Arts Association(CAA) Exhibition.

Not to be morbid, but what would you like to be remembered for?
Being a great friend.

Have you ever regretted making something and showing it?
I’ve never regretted showing or making something. Everything I have made has taught me something, but I have destroyed a lot.

What is the best comment you’ve ever received?
“This is the best thesis show I have ever seen at Pratt.” – former professor at Pratt Institution

The worst?
“That’s a very handsome painting.  – Don’t remember

What would you like to accomplish within the next five years?
Two new bodies or work.

What’s your go-to snack when you’re working?
Coffee

If you could be anyone (Seriously, anyone. Past/present/future/nonexistent/existent. You get the idea.) who would you be and why?
Amedeo Modigliani. A true painter in the high times of Paris.

Thanks again to Cory for answering our questions!

Posted by Jessica Mannisi, assistant curator

2015 SWIC Art Faculty Show – Interview #2


Our exhibition of artwork by the art faculty of Southwestern Illinois College is now open through February 26th. Sculpture, painting, ceramics, drawing, digital images, photography, and mixed media all show the diversity and talent of the faculty artists. 

The faculty is not spared from our intern Kailey’s interviews. Below, Nancy Friederich answers her questions.

Nancy Friederich's "Into the Japanese Garden", oil on paper

Nancy Friederich’s “Into the Japanese Garden”

When did you know the arts were what you wanted to do, long-term?
I was in my early 30s, and a friend was taking a casual studio class one night a week, and turning out some good work.  I looked at her paintings and just knew that I could make art too.  My third child was very young, so I had to wait until he began school, and I joined her art group.  I was hooked immediately, and the rest is history.

What inspires you the most?
I love nature.  The symphony of color and texture in my flower garden is a constant source of inspiration.

What is your current favorite medium?
My early paintings were in oil, but I was soon drawn to watercolors, and worked in that medium for 20 years.  It was not until graduate school that I rediscovered oil paint, but I prefer painting in oil on watercolor paper.  For me, it is a great marriage.

When you are working, what do you listen to, if anything?
I love piano music, both classical and contemporary.  I light a candle too, and then I take a deep breath and squeeze out the paint.

What piece are you most proud of?
I am most proud of the large iris painting that I did a few years ago.  I struggled with it and repainted it three times until it was finally right.  It took me 14 months to complete.

What would you like to be remembered for?
I hope people remember me as a good person.

Have you ever regretted making something and showing it?
Oh yes.  One of my very first paintings ever was a mountain scene.  I had never seen a mountain in real life at that point, so I have no idea why I thought I could paint one.  I sold it at my yard sale for $5, and was lucky to get that much for it.  It was a terrible painting.  The lady who bought it still has it hanging in her house.  I have offered to buy it back, but she will not sell it.  She thinks it was be valuable someday.  Poor thing.

What is the best comment you have ever received?
Friends and colleagues are always so kind in reference to my work, but I have had some pretty scathing comments in my art school critiques.  I usually had it coming to me.

What would you like to accomplish in the next five years?
I would like to spend more time at the easel.  Of late, I have spent a great deal of time on other projects, and as soon as they are complete, I will be back in the paint.

What is your go-to snack when working?
Anything and everything.

If you could be anyone (Seriously, anyone. Past/present/future/nonexistent/existent. You get the idea.) who would you be and why?
Just for one day, I would love to have been part of the Impressionists group, painting in the streets of Montmartre, and comparing notes after a day’s work over a cocktail.

Thanks again to Nancy for answering our questions!

Posted by Jessica Mannisi, assistant curator