Here you can find some of artist profiles who are participating in Casa Na Ilha Residency Program. Keep checking as we will be adding artists over the next few weeks!
MICHELLE MANSOUR - VISUAL ARTIST
Oakland, CA USA
Michelle Mansour is an artist, educator, curator, and the current Executive Director of Root Division, a visual arts non-profit in San Francisco. Mansour is the recipient of an Honorary Fellowship and multiple residencies from Djerassi Resident Artists Program. Her work as been shown in a variety of non-profit and commercial venues such as RB Stevenson Gallery, Bedford Gallery, McLoughlin Gallery, Southern Exposure, Morris Graves Museum, and Yuma Art Center, including solo exhibitions at the SFMOMA Artists Gallery and Latham Square via ProArts. Mansour has work in a variety of collections including Nordstroms, Hilton Hotels, Rosewood Hotels & Resorts, and the El Camino Hospital. She has also curated and co-curated several exhibitions including 2x2's at ProArts and Metaphysical Abstraction: Contemporary Approaches to Spiritual Content. Mansour received her MFA in Painting at the San Francisco Art Institute; a BA in Art Theory and Practice from Northwestern University and a Post Baccalaureate degree in Art Education from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Mansour has given lectures and been on panels with the San Francisco Arts Commission, San Francisco Art Institute, California College of the Arts, University of San Francisco, and Sonoma State University.
Based initially on an investigation of the interior world of the body, Mansour's work has become a broader reflection of where science and the metaphysical overlap. The paintings are meticulously crafted by layering translucent washes of acrylic and building up relief surfaces with ink & silicone. Fluctuating between organic fluidity and manipulated surfaces, she uses this combination of techniques to speak about the tension between what we can and cannot control in our own physiology. The process of repeating layer upon layer, mark upon mark, becomes a devotional practice. Strands of cells appear as tissue-like prayer beads – a tactile element for counting countless meditations.
YASMINA HUCKINS – PAINTER
Yasmina Huckins is a young painter currently based in Brooklyn, New York. She was born in Upstate New York in 1993, and grew up in the home of her Lebanese American family. In 2016, she graduated with a BFA from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, and since has been working in her studio in Crown Heights. Throughout the past years she has made it her intention not to become static when creating, as her work is inspired by travel and exotic environments. She has worked in places such as Venice, Italy and New South Wales, Australia.
Yasmina’s most recent body of work depicts worlds she desires. She paints abstracted landscapes that have grown from a series of travels through unfamiliar lands. The paintings interpret ecological paradises that dance on the line between fantasy and reality. They are defined by the whimsicality of tropical environments. The series can be seen as a path through a world created by her own wanderlust and vision of the tropical. They embody her oasis away from the concrete jungle of New York. Yasmina dreams of a sultry landscape, pulsing with heat and life. She has fallen in love with her imaginings of Brazil. At Casa Na Ilha she plans to develop her paintings further, while being surrounded by the stage in which her paintings transport their viewers.
TARJA HÄRKÖNEN – TRANSLATOR
I have been a translator of literature since 1989. I live in Helsinki, Finland, with my youngest son, already 21, and a 14-year-old cat named Salsa. I started as a translator of Spanish and Latin American literature. (That's why the cat is called Salsa, not Samba!) I translated such writers as Antonio Muñoz Molina, Baltazar Gracián, Alejo Carpentier, Eduardo Mendoza, Carlos Ruiz Zafón, Andrés Neuman and Manuel Puig, but after reading The Hour of the Star of Clarice Lispector in English wanted to translate it, and then I studied Portuguese to make it possible. Today I have translated five novels from my favorite writer and work will continue. At first I thought I would translate only Lispector's books, but soon a publisher offered me the novel Nenhum Olhar by the Portuguese writer José Luís Peixoto, today very famous, winner of Oceanos award last year. And now I am in the new disconcerting situation that all the next works are of the Portuguese language. It all started with the translation of a poetry book by Wilmar Silva de Andrade, Estilhaços no Lago de Púrpura, a work that opened the door for the translation of Paulo Lins' novel Cidade de Deus. A few years ago I translated fados for a Finnish fado singer, Kirsi Poutanen. The album is called Amalia Tribute. Now I am working on the novel O Professor of Cristovão Tezza.
Next spring I will make my first trip to Brazil. I will stay in the country of Clarice and Inferninho (a protagonist of Paulo's novel) for two or three months and I think I need a quiet start, a place where I can breathe the Brazilian air first, get used to the weather and the language. The residence in Ilhabela on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean in the exotic nature reserve is an ideal place for the translator who after translating the book of Lins does not have any illusions of the life of a tourist in the streets of the metropolis of Brazil! In addition, the island itself will be a source of inspiration and learning, because descriptions of fauna and flora are very common in literature. I look forward to the walks. In Casa Na Ilha I will apply to the translation of Desde que o samba é samba by Paulo Lins or Um sopro de vida by Clarice Lispector. I will translate the two novels, only the order is unclear. I think it will be the Samba book. I will also continue to point at my notepad. I already started in the summer when I decided to travel to Brazil. Where will this path lead ...
After four weeks I will be ready to go out into the vast world. ”Vasto mundo que me tem, enorme mundo que me abriga, Quem sou eu? Porque razão estou em ti?”First to Sao Paulo to know the literary life of the city and meet my writers and colleagues, then I will travel to Rio and visit the places of the books of Lins and Lispector. The last destination will be Salvador and voluntary work in the charity of the Cidade da Luz. I will work part time in the cities as well.
I am a middle-aged woman with three grown children. Now in my new freedom I feel that I am living the spring of my life again. I love my new freedom.
KATHERINE BOXALL – PAINTER
Katherine Boxall is an artist based in San Francisco, CA. She was born in Ottawa, Canada and grew in a bilingual family, speaking French and English. In 2016, she graduated with a BFA from Queen’s University, including an international exchange at the University of New South Wales Art & Design in 2015. Currently, Katherine is an MFA candidate at San Francisco Art Institute focusing in painting. She experiments with dry drawing media, spray paint and oil on a variety of surfaces including textiles. Her paintings deal with the figure, femininity and intimacy. Katherine has exhibited her work in Canada, Australia and the United States.
JEROME TRUDELLE – VISUAL ARTIST
Jerome Trudelle, born in 1995, is a multidisciplinary artist working and living in Quebec City, Canada. In 2017, he graduated from Laval University with a Bachelor's degree in Visual and Media Arts. Jerome makes various forms of artistic expression such as video, drawing and painting. However, installation sculpture is currently his medium of choice, working mainly with pure materials such as fabric threads and plaster strips. His sculptures, composed of floating particles in space, are the result of a hooking technique he developed and improved during his college years. Jerome’s artistic proposition deploys around the themes of time, past/present and nostalgia. Starting from philosophical reflections on the concept of the momentary and the perishable, he creates suspended sculptures that seem everlasting yet ephemeral by their fragile appearance. Through his work, the artist attempts to confront people to their own evanescence and to the immensity of their surrounding. The dichotomy between the tiny and the incommensurable governs his artistic vision, both on the formal and reflective level. His intention is to relate and oppose the smaller and the greater phenomena of human existence. Disintegration, immateriality, fragmentation and vagueness are the main guidelines of Jerome’s work. He explores the phenomenon of time in its infinite flow and fatality; he manipulates it, manifests it and magnifies it to finally accept it completely through his artistic process. Of poetic and transcendant nature, his creations aim to recall the value of each moment, place and action in such a precarious universe. Jerome is currently taking a one-year study break to work on his artistic approach and improve his sculptural techniques. To continue his artistic journey, he intends to begin his Master in Visual Arts as soon as next year. The Casa Na Ilha art residency is the perfect occasion to achieve his current goals. He aspires to use his one month residency to connect with other artists and, through exploration, to produce several works which will allow him to develop his creativity while extending his field of creation.
GAYLORD BREWER – WRITER
Gaylord Brewer is author of 15 books of poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, and literary criticism, including the novella Octavius the 1st (Red Hen, 2008), the poetry collection Country of Ghost (Red Hen Press, 2015), the cookbook-memoir The Poet’s Guide to Food, Drink, & Desire (Stephen F. Austin UP, 2015), and most recently a 10th volume of poetry, The Feral Condition (Negative Capability, 2018). Nearly 1000 individual poems have been published in such journals and anthologies as The Bedford Introduction to Literature and Best American Poetry.
Brewer was awarded a Tennessee Arts Commission Individual Artist Fellowship in 2009. He has had numerous international writing residencies—including at Hawthornden Castle (Scotland), the Fundación Valparaíso (Spain), and the Global Arts Village (India)—and has taught in Russia, Kenya, and the Czech Republic. He earned a Ph.D. from Ohio State University and has been a member of the Middle Tennessee State University Department of English since 1993.
CHASEN WOLCOTT – DRAWING AND PAINTING
Growing up in California has an enormous amount of value in my life. From the way I treat my coastlines, encounter a variety of big cities filled with many different cultures, and through the movements of skateboarding, surfing, and street art. In California I am lucky enough to have been shaped with so much diversity in order to preserve qualities of life that are so challenged in today's forecast. Within each of those aspects, the speed of modern life gives me adrenaline to use creative linework through the culture that I've lived with for many years with confident decision making and control. Obsessed with a variety of fearless application, I also commit to slow the brush and downshift through moments using charcoal, oils, acrylics, graphite, and ink. If I hesitate, the action won't feel genuine because hesitation kills.
Inspired by the optically rebellious artistic attitudes that exist between Futurism, Abstract Expressionism, and even Impressionism, my mixed Native American and Mexican heritage is expressed through primitive mark-making and primordial elements. Imagery redefines direct experiences and real time intimacy. People-watching and unapologetic sexual expression are central to my artistic lust by investigating masculine and feminine interaction. I process real life situations then unleash artistic fascinations through rapid painterly gesture. Now affirming that the world has been enriched by a new form of beauty: the beauty of speed.
I went to California State University, Long Beach for undergraduate BFA in Drawing and Painting, while currently receiving my MFA in Painting at San Francisco Art Institute. From a very observational training in painting to a less graphic and more candid painting process has evolved over the last 5 years. I wanted to make visible the process of searching and essence in every mark accessible in which I cared so much about. Investigative approaches has taught me how to preserve color integrity and understand painting in more of the present moment.
To connect more please visit my website: www.chasenwolcott.com
Or go to my Instagram: @poursauce
MARCO CASTANEDA – INTERDISCIPLINARY ARTIST
Marco Castaneda is an interdisciplinary artist based in San Francisco and Los Angeles. His work deals with migration, constructs of whiteness, and geopolitics. What interests him most is the intersection of the three, and figuring out how to exist in between the established norms
PATRICE DI CHRISTINA – VISUAL ARTIST
Patrice is a visual artist whose work is currently focused on mental conceptions of death. She explores these ideas through multimedia pieces involving painting, printmaking, drawing, and sculpture. While abstract, the forms used in her work are inspired by those found in natural environments, a technique left over from a past interest in landscape painting. Though this focus is largely general, the topics explored in her work are deeply personal and are a method of understanding herself and exploring her own relationship to spirituality. She also views artmaking as a therapeutical process, as her art is shaped by other issues she encounters throughout life, both positive and negative. Overall, she intends to use her artwork to reflect larger patterns of grieving, healing, and rebuilding in the face of the knowledge of our imminent demises. Her work at Casa Na Ilha will take a similar form, though with a higher emphasis on the bodily experiences involved in this holding this knowledge.
Patrice grew up in Connecticut and currently attends Oberlin College in Ohio. She will graduate in May of 2018 with her bachelors in studio art and psychology.
SARAH WALL – WRITER
I’m the owner of Body Mind Spirit Business & Life Coaching. I support people to break through fear and limiting beliefs by clearing the clutter of the mind, using simple techniques that have immediate and powerful impact.
I’m also the co-founder of Yoga Vacations, providing a safe space for people to explore their inner world through yoga, while traveling to beautiful destinations.
My own journey into yoga, which began twenty years ago, has taken me around the world many times and sparked my passion to give back. I’m a proud board member of Helping Hands for India, formed by a group of yoga teachers, who have built a school in northern India, providing free education to almost 300 children.
Incorporating mindfulness and meditation into my own life has been essential to my well being when navigating life’s events. I’ve shared my story to inspire others, who are craving something more out of life, in my first book “Life Reboot – An Inner Wisdom Guide To Finding Your Passion And Purpose. “
I’m taking time out for myself at Casa Na Ilha to refine my ideas, dive deeper into self and to work on my second book. The working title is ‘God and me’.
At the root my next book is about exploring my connection with and perception of God. I will revisit my childhood, being raised in a non-religious household, and how my experience of God has changed over the years of my life.
I am interested to connect with people of different cultural, religious and spiritual backgrounds, so I may research and incorporate some of their stories directly into my book. I am particularly interested in learning more about the native community of the island, the Caicaras. I would like to know how their spirituality helps them amidst changing times, as they are at risk of losing their way of life of living off the land.
I’m an avid photographer and I look forward to taking lots of photos during my stay too!
A portion of all my creative works goes to charity.
To connect with me, visit http://body-mind-spirit-coach.com/
TUCKER HOLLINGSWORTH – CONCEPTUAL PHOTOGRAPHER
Tucker Hollingsworth (b. Boston 1984) is a conceptual photographer. His photos have been described by photography curator Patricia Briggs as “memorable and eye- grabbing.” In the past year he has completed residencies at SFAI (Santa Fe, NM), Opus House (Truchas, NM), Fundacion Valparaiso (Mojacar, Spain), VCCA (Amherst, VA). He is a two-time McKnight Visual Artist finalist. In 2011 Mr. Hollingsworth received his second Jerome Foundation Emerging Artist Residency at Tofte Lake Center (Winton, MN) as well as an Artist Initiative grant from MSAB. Mr. Hollingsworth has been a recipient of fellowships at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts (Amherst, VA), The Ragdale Foundation (Chicago, IL), and has been in residency at Lanesboro Arts Center (Lanesboro, MN) and MacDowell Arts Colony (Peterborough, NH). Prior to a full-time artist practice, Mr. Hollingsworth was a productions staff photographer at the Guthrie Theater (Minneapolis, MN) and Stratford Shakespeare Festival (Stratford, Ontario).
PAULA LIFSCHITZ – VISUAL ARTIST
Paula Lifschitz is a visual artist living in Buenos Aires. She grew up in Texas, and got a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Pennsylvania in art history. She has had many art shows in New York, San Francisco and Buenos Aires. She focuses her art on drawing and painting, and she enjoys exploring the effects of mixed media on traditional canvas.
For Paula, art is playful; art is fun. When she paints, she flourishes in the world of color. She creates a new reality, transposing the real world onto the canvas in vibrant colors that have nothing to do with the dull world of “reality”. She paints to express her inner being, to make the world a better place, in her own way. Her creative process has emerged like a child growing up; as if she has turned the mirror away from herself to reflect the world at large, which she then paints.
Her creative process is constantly drawing inspiration from the world around her, which is why the residency at Casa Na Ilha will be such an amazing experience. She has recently focused her work on exploring the beauty of natural landscapes. In the city of Buenos Aires she has limited real world inspiration in her surroundings, but the month she will spend in Brazil will give her an abundance of material to paint.
The city exhausts the people who live there, running around frantically in the day to day chaos of the world. One becomes nervous, stressed, and unhappy in the hectic environment of city life. Urbanization doesn’t provide its residents with a lot of landscapes, green spaces, or peaceful retreats where people can easily rest from their busy lives. People seek out these peaceful, majestic places in remote, scenic places that aren’t usually easily accessible retreats. During this residency, I am going to disconnect myself from the crowded, busy daily routine of city life and enjoy the beautiful terrain of Ilhabela. I am going to paint landscapes and people, in situ, and really allow the natural world to show me its beauty, peacefully and graciously. My art is going to reflect the inner harmony and peace I know this residency will bring me.
CHARLES PAPILLO – Visual Artist
Los Angeles – U.S.A
Charles Papillo was born in 1986 into an Italian American family in Boston, Massachusetts, in the United States of America. From a young age, he was constantly performing, sculpting with random material and creating invented worlds for himself and others. He moved to New York City at the age of 18 and attended Parsons the New School for Design where he received a BFA in Fine Arts in 2008. During that time, he travelled around Europe, Ecuador, and North America and also attended Hellenic International Studies in the Arts in Paros, Greece. Post-graduation, he attended a handful of artist residencies within Spain, but ended up settling in San Francisco, California by late 2009. He recently moved to Los Angeles last year and has continued to work on large scale de-collage drawings, “The Book” (hand-made stream of consciousness books) and new video work pertaining to the human body, movement, identity and ritual. Articulated concisely within his artist’s statement:
Taking things - both living and inanimate - out of a particular context yields a new and sometimes ambiguous identity; a palimpsest of the former self remains.
My work is a ritual that is presented through imagery and through space, and the resulting conversation within this territory.
ANDREA WILKINS – PAINTER AND PHOTOGRAPHER
U.S.A – South Korea
I take photographs. I am inspired by stillness, nature, music, relationships and the complexity of everyday life. I am an art educator and a yoga teacher. I am interested in the spiritual, meditation, ritual and prayer. In my time in Brazil, I plan to document the magical vibrations of the Brazilian jungle. My response will focus on my direct relationship to my surroundings, through meditative practice, visceral sensation and spirit guidance. Nature has the capacity to enchant and reveal deep truths and healing wisdom within us. It is my goal to listen to this communication and create photographic stories. I hope my proposed body of work will reveal a sense of love, nurture and light.
My background is in painting, photography, education and dance. I studied at Black Hills State University in Spearfish South Dakota, Herron School of Art in Indianapolis, Indiana and received my Art Education K12 teaching license as well as Master in Art Curriculum at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. I am passionate about the creative process being a source of healing and therapy for all people. I have been a yoga practitioner for the past 15 years and consider my practice a critical part of my growth and experience in life. Currently, I live and work in Jeju Island, South Korea and have been here for the past 5 years.
BEATE KHUN: PAINTING INSTALLATION COLOUR AND SPATIAL DESIGN
With my colour design work I am creating colour concepts for public buildings as schools, hospitals, senior residencys, kindergardens, offices etc. The design is aimed to suit the people who are spending a lot of time inside the building, so as a consequence their health is improving, they are feeling more happy, because they are in an environment they like and feel comfortable with, and it is also improving their working capacities. Currently I am doing research about showing that people feel much better in naturally coloured environments. Painting During the process of painting it is important to me to advance to the essence of the painting I am working on. From this a specifc colouring or ambiance accrues. By conceiving the energy of a certain person / situation / object / space a kind of translation process is taking place in which this kind of energy is being transferred into a visual expression of colour and form. This can embody both figurative and purely abstract elements. During the process of painting something autonomous is emerging. As the painting is developping it is getting more and more complex. It is obtaining its specifc character. In this way both multilayeredness and visual depth emerge. This is being intensifed through synaesthetic references; the chime of a certain colour is playing an important role to this. Thematically the painting refers to the installation work, only the way of expression is being different. It is a matter of the connection between inside and outside space, the movements in-between. A movement that flows, becomes firm, and again dissolves. In my latest series reflections I am working with traces that light is leaving behind on certain surfaces, in certain surroundings and the ambiance which is created through this. In my Installation work I am dealing with the tension between inside and outside space. Creating the inside spaces I am using predominantly semi-transparent fabric, mainly silk. The outer shape of the sewed spaces depends on the site or is to be seen in relation to it. I like collaborating with other artists, musicians and choreographers, since there is a strong connection between colour, form, space, sound, light and movement. One can relate to the other or be transferred into one another. My sewed silk spaces can be seen as site-specifc work in which maybe another artist can produce an appropriate sound work or movement. A choreographical interpretation or interference could also be possible. Site and light are important factors of my work.
During my stay at Casa Na Ilha I would like to forward two things in particular. One is more directed towards the outside, the other one towards the inside. Talking about the so called outside first: I want to be working on colour concepts for schools and hospitals in particular. The aim behind is to serve health and wellbeing of children and people who are ill. I am deeply convinced that the surrounding environment is having a great impact on people and a bad environment can do much damage. In addition to this I would like to contribute to the wellbeing of the people who are living nearby. This could be very interesting I think. The more introspective part of my stay would be about art. I would like to develop my painting and installation work in a place where I will be surrounded by nature and where I will be free of every-day-life-distractions. Being in an intercultural and interdisciplinary environment will enable me to exchange and share my ideas with others which I would highly appreciate. Short Biography _Fine Art studies: Karlsruhe (GER), Akademie der Bildenden Kunste, painting class Prof. Max G. Kaminski Berlin (GER), Hochschule der Kunste, painting class Prof. Lemke Brussels (B), Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts Glasgow (UK), Glasgow School of Art _ scholarships: Glasgow (UK), Barcelone (S), Landau (GER) _ personal assistant of Marina Abramovic, Madrid, 1992
ELENA BONI – VISUAL ARTIST
Elena Boni was born in Latina in 1972, grew up in Switzerland and completed her studies in Turin. She lives and works in Rome. Her works explores various artistic techniques and forms such as drawing, painting, installation, performance video and design. She has worked in site specific planning and re contextualization of objects, a project concept of interior design in Russia. She has also worked for several years as an art director for cultural and artistic events within projects to assist the mentally disturbed. It was her most recent experience in Tanzania, Vietnam and Madagascar.
She draws inspiration from nature and how it affects her. “My work often starts witha specific object and gradually evolves into an entire space, evoking a larger story or narrative. One of my recentworksconcerns processes of personal rebirth .I began by painting large fabric panels and hanging them in a room. The images represented drew on scenery to Tanzania and Brazil, were the works were partially realized, before being exhibited in Rome. In addition to the visual element, the sound of a heartbeat resonated throughout the space, together with a more elaborate soundscape designed specifically for the occasion”
Elena aims to completely immerse in the environment during her time in Casa Na Ilha, in order to create an installation with materials found in and around the house and its environs.
DESHAWN DUMAS – VISUAL ARTIST
DeShawn is interested in representations of the feminine divine as expressed in non- Western and Western societies. His project will explore the human-divine relationship by producing and researching images of God as the Great Mother, after the art historian Meinard Craighead. In particular he hopes to produce several small oil paintings depicting black Madonna as protector of the Earth.
‘By interacting with decedents of the indigenous population of llhabela, I hope to “absorb” the energy of the people and the island so as to transfer it into my paintings. This process might be described as a form of cathexis.’ Freud defined cathexis as the concentration of emotional and mental energy within an object, person or idea.
Arguably, the Earth has passed judgment on Western capitalistic society. Numerous biologist and conservationist agree that industrial capitalism has caused Earth to enter the ‘Sixth Great Mass Extinction’ of all flora and fauna. Along similar lines, the methods and values of neo-capitalism threaten the Caicaras people as well as the Atlantic rain forest. He wishes to objectify beauty and trauma, the intersection of spirituality and Western Imperialism.
He lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.
SHERRY HAWKINS – PAINTER AND ENVIROMENTAL ANALYST
My career as an environmental analyst has long mirrored my love affair with nature and my desire to capture beautiful moments observed outdoors and in my travels. Though not formally trained in art, I have taken many classes and workshops, sometimes in other countries, to enrich my repertoire of techniques. Although most at ease with oil paint, I also enjoy using water color I am also a proficient fused glass artist, and have had a fair body of work represented in galleries and shows. The challenge of transforming the cold hard properties of glass into light-filled sparkling landscapes and sea escapes is a fascination for me. Over and over, I find myself drawn to images of water - ocean waves, waterfalls, lake reflections and refractions. This theme recurs in much of my work in all the media in which I work.
During my time in Casa Na Ilha, I would like to pursue a project that I will call "Waters of the World." Using oil paint, and perhaps water color and mixed media, I would like to explore the creation of different water environments around our planet. I want to try to capture the mood and spirit of the selected places so that they will reveal my love and admiration for these locales. I hope to discover something new and engaging about the waters of Brazil and in your nature reserve.
MARNI MAREE – PAINTER
Marni's vibrant watercolors represent her love for drawing, desire to create
beauty and her inner joy. Her favorite subjects to paint are flowers, camels and scenes from her travels to the American West, Europe and Haiti. Marni never travels without her sketchbook and mini
painting supplies and is always ready to capture the spirit of the various cultures.
Marni teaches International Workshops in Laroque des Alberes, France (2014, 2015 and 2016), a Caribbean Cruise Workshop in January 2017 and Tuscany in June 2017. She also teaches Watercolor and Drawing at the Workhouse Arts Center (Lorton, VA), The Loft Art Center (Occoquan, VA), Green Spring Gardens (Alexandria, VA), as well as private students in her studio (Springfield, VA). Her monthly Art Feast Watercolor Workshop is very popular with beginners as well as more experienced painters because Marni teaches the thrilling and surprising things that watercolor can do as well as provide a safe place to experiment and be creative with positive encouragement from Marni and the other students. Marni coordinates the Enrichment Program at Village of Hope School, Ganthier, in Haiti with www.villageofhopehaiti.org where she teaches Art classes every summer since 2007 to children ages 10 - 18 along with 14 other American and Haitian teachers of various hands on skills. As you might be able to tell, Marni loves to teach almost as much as she loves to paint.
Marni was an Artist in Residence in Dinan, France for the month of November
2016 where she focused on painting the town and surrounding areas. She has a solo exhibit at the Workhouse in April 2017 with all of the paintings created while in France and or inspired by her
travels through France.
Marni earned her BFA from Moore College of Art and Design in Philadelphia, PA. She worked as a freelance graphic artist after graduating but gradually transitioned to colored pencil and then to watercolors. Her primary medium is watercolor but she changes the surface on which she paints from paper to yupo (a slick plastic surface) to masa (rice paper), and canvas. Since watercolor acts different on each surface it is almost like changing mediums and the thrill of not knowing just what will happen makes each painting exciting.
Marni has a studio and exhibits continuously at the Workhouse Arts Center in Lorton, VA, participates in local group shows and has had a solo show about once a year for the past 17 years. She has won numerous awards for her watercolors.
Marni also has a studio at the Loft Art Center in Occoquan, VA. She is a member of the Springfield Art Guild, National Watercolor Society and the Potomac Valley Watercolorists, a juried organization of professional watercolorists.
ROSWITHA GERLITZ – WRITER
Roswitha began her career as a set/costume designer in opera, theatre and dance. Since the millennium she developed her own ideas and interests as an artist, writer and director and founded her company, Mistress of Time. She has produced, written and directed multi-disciplined opera performances, in both theatrical and academic realms.
Her performance work incorporates spoken word, movement, opera and digital images, and has involved working with composers, groups of actors, dancers, acrobats and musicians in established theatres. In 2010 she created an operatic ensemble piece that sparked the idea to further explore choral performances. Roswitha’s decision to focus on the collectiveness versa the individual of the ‘chorus’ led her to study towards a PhD at Brunel University.
Most of her performance-related writing took shape in form of librettos consisting of dialogues, prosaic and poetic pieces and existing text sources. The chorus complements her career-long interest in non-hierarchical performance, which relates directly to the behaviour of bees.
Roswitha has written poetry throughout the past decade and self-published a edition of hardbacks ‘The Lizard’s Council’. She embarked on writing poetry as part of a novella while directing choral performances of ‘Be the Bee’ and last year’s sequel ‘The Swarm’, that focuses on the bee swarms’ extraordinary way of (democratic) collective decision making which received the People’s Award. It was this work that in part acted as a catalyst for her theoretical and practical studies of the chorus in the light of the collective and the individual which formed the foundation for her first book ‘ The future was bright’.
As a poet, writer, set/costume designer and theatre director, the focus of my writing and my interest as an author, is in the research of how time defines us.
My writing explores how time in different contexts and the methods of measuring temporality, changes our experiences of it. I want to explore the differences between the Circadian rhythms and the flow of time within our natural ecosystem. Spending time with you would enable me to experience the concepts I have explored in abstract form in my book called 'The Future was Bright' that centers on the relationship between a bee and a human across different planes of existence. During the writing process I wanted to explore this theme across different formats so I created an operatic performance piece about the complex internal and external relationship of bees called ‘The Swarm’ which was performed in London at the ‘Vault festival’ and won the People’s Award.
Being immersed in the natural habitat of Ilhabela, I would have the opportunity to investigate at close proximity the marine life, flora and fauna, and sustainable way of life of the local communities that I have been researching for my book. Having the opportunity to be involved in creating projects that support the ecosystem would enable me to further research the interaction between time and our natural environment while working with you on projects to support and protect the ecological habitat of Ilhabela.
My artistic practice explores the human and non-human condition, consciousness and time by interweaving elements of science, philosophy and environmental issues. The writers Yuval N. Harari and Robert Whittaker, philosopher Timothy Morton and economist Jeremy Rifkin have inspired my work and have been the source and my research for my book.
Having spent two years of reading through the theoretical side of these subjects, I long for an opportunity to find a new perspective for my artistic work through the experiencing of the natural world at Ilhabela. I have always had a strong connection with South America and in particular Brazil, since I encountered the aquatic life on Fernando de Noronha in 2009. The residency at Ilhabela would give me the opportunity to turn the academic into reality and will inspire the poetry and content of the sequel to my book.
ANA DRUCKER - VISUAL ARTIST
Ana is a Mexican artist currently living in Barcelona. She has been living in Europe for 5 years and this experience has let her grow my interest for her Latin roots. She wants to meet, connect and collaborate with people, see a completely different side of the world, a world she haven’t been used to lately. She wants to connect with nature and be away from the big cities she has been living her whole life.
The project Ana will develop during her stay in Casa Na Ilha is about color. ‘I’ve had a huge obsession with color my entire life, and it’s been one of the main components in my work.’ She would like to do a strong research on the perception and relation between form and color, and how this transform our perception of the visible world. She thinks that the place at Casa Na Ilha will suit perfectly. ‘Nature is the richest in color but also because color is related to feeling and sensations, and I´m sure that I will discover new senses/colors.’ She wants to develop a graphic project, based in painting, digital manipulation and printing techniques. Her idea is to create a collection of experiments on color and how color can transform and blend depending on what other element is accompanying. She would also like to make a mural that synthesis her research and a long collection of prints that shows this color evolution.
She focus her work on visual experimentation, fascinated by texture and color, interested in raw material and the possibilities that range between the analog and the digital. When she decided she wanted to study art, she started working as an assistant for a ceramic workshop for Fundación Sebastián in Mexico City, then she decided to move to Barcelona, where she started working in a digital arts and music festival called MIRA. Now she is the visual curator for the festival, which has let her work with some of the best artists of contemporary electronic music and digital and arts. She also works as a graphic designer for a company named OPTIMUS. As a freelance artist she does album covers for musicians.
LYNN SORDS – PAINTER
I am a 70 year old retired accountant. Most of my life art has been observed and enjoyed but not experienced until I was in my late 40’s when I began to work with clay. Now I want to open up a new part of myself with watercolor. I moved from Virginia to San Antonio, TX, three years ago and on a return visit, attended a class taught by Marni Maree, which opened up a whole new artistic outlet. Sadly I have not yet found a painting group to work with and learn from here in San Antonio. So I take every opportunity I can to be with those artists from Virginia so I can expand my horizons. Although to my mind, I am very much a beginner, I feel a month to concentrate on painting in such beautiful surroundings couldn’t help but improve my ability. I will be bringing all my paints and paper and a painting stool/backpack that will allow me to sit most anywhere and paint.
TERRY HOLMAN – ENVIROMENTALIST AND PAINTER
I would like to use the time at Casa na Ilha to explore, develop, and refine my skills using nature and the ocean as my subject matter. I’m seeking to express my love of the ocean and the natural surroundings in my art.
I am a watercolor artist who embraces color and light in my work. My evolving body of work explores a variety of subject matter. My inspiration comes from nature, travels, and every day moments. Although I experiment with multimedia for fun, my passion is watercolor. Recently retired from a rewarding Federal career focused on environmental and ocean policy, I have a myriad of notebooks filled with artistic doodles, and have explored various artistic media, including textiles, ceramics, needle craft, and oil painting before finding and falling in love with watercolor. I am on the Board of Directors and member of the Springfield Art Guild. I am the co-chair of the Green Springs Gallery Art show. I have participated in local shows and have done commissioned work. My primary teacher is Marni Maree, and I have studies with Brigit O’Connor, Leslie Saeta, Robert Joyner, Paul Jackson, and Iain Stewart.
JANE ZWEIBEL – PAINTER
In my Midlife Mermaids series, I examine issues of female identity, gender, body image, body politic, sexuality, and aging. The faces and upper bodies of each mermaid consist of self-portraits expressing a variety of emotional and psychological states, including confrontation and contemplation. Within the shapes of the lower torsos and tails, I paint images of the mysteries, wonders, and wreckage of the sea: coral reefs, sea plants, and flowers, and the ruins of sunken ships. Opposites of vulnerability/power, beauty/ugliness, growth/decomposition, life/death, and fact/fiction are contained and expressed in these works. The process of making these pieces is labor-intensive. I call them “stuffed paintings”, which describes them as three-dimensional sculptural paintings. I hand sew and stuff the canvas forms with fiber, and paint the narrative images on the facades, using oil paint and glitter. In these works form and content merge in unusual and unique ways to address contemporary issues.