The Spotlight Artist Program provides collectors a focused look at several cutting-edge artists recognized for their skill and achievement in the visual arts.
Whether capturing the towering beauty of aspen trees, finding humanity in the ordinary in his figurative works, or taking a meta approach in his thought-provoking “Art in Art” series, Gary Kim leaves a lasting impression with his artwork.
Born in 1958 in South Korea, Kim showed outstanding artistic talent early on, attending art school after graduating from high school. After receiving his BFA, Kim got a master’s degree in advertising design, then went on to become an acclaimed illustrator and art director for 17 years. Kim also taught art and design at art colleges during that time. While working in the advertising field, he spent a lot of time sharpening his drawing skills by studying human anatomy and figurative.
In 1999, Kim moved to New York with his family to further his education at the prestigious Pratt Institute. While there, he often visited the Metropolitan Museum of Art. One day, after seeing John Singer Sargent’s master paintings, Kim knew he had to pursue his lifetime goal of being a fine artist. At first, he concentrated on portrait paintings, and had his first huge portrait exhibition in 2003. Since then, his reputation as a portrait artist has grown, garnering him commissions to paint portraits of prominent corporate and political subjects. Kim has exhibited his work at galleries across the country and participated in several painting competitions. In 2012, he was given the honor of being invited to the first World of Art Showcase in Las Vegas, one of the largest gatherings of today’s master artists in history.
Kim now lives in Santa Fe, where he and his wife have been running Gary Kim Fine Art Gallery in the city’s historic downtown art district for several years. Aside from painting and teaching in the gallery, Kim continues to show his work at solo exhibitions around the country, most recently at Evergreen Fine Art Gallery in Colorado.
Collaborators both in life and on the canvas, Gabriel Collazo and Angela Brooks of Collazo Collection capture the meaning of partnership in its fullest sense. “In our everyday lives,” they explain, “there are so many things we have to do, so we wanted to make our studio a place of letting go and being free to create. For us, painting is not a job, it comes from our souls. It’s something we love doing together, dedicating our time with each piece until it is complete.”
Collazo, the owner of Aztec Scenic Design, Inc., a decorative art, custom finishes, 3D printing, and fabrication company, met his match in Brooks, the design principal of Brooks Design Studio, a full-service interior design firm. “We are a team, we are soulmates, and we believe in love and we love what we do,” say the multi-talented pair. Collazo and Brooks create large-scale paintings together in a process that can take weeks per piece, as they witness the reaction of each added layer before progressing or deeming the work complete. Their evocative abstract works display incredible texture, visual balance, and movement, and the harmony between the two artists is evident in the work’s seamless style.
Collazo Collection’s work has been featured in galleries in California, Florida, and Illinois, as well as international exhibitions such as Artexpo New York.
Born in the West African country of Ghana in 1975 into a family of artists, Alfred Addo was exposed to art from infancy on. His primary inspiration came from his father, who exhibited his own work regularly and challenged Addo to produce unique artwork. And though Addo was passionate about art, he also possessed a keen interest in the physical sciences, a field he found satisfyingly challenging. He was torn between going to college to study medicine and becoming a professional artist. In 1997, he decided to follow his passion and pursue art full-time.
Since then, Addo has specialized in sculpture as the core of his art profession. Interestingly, his physical science background led him to experiment with different materials, including sawdust, which he’d played in throughout his childhood at the sawmill where his father bought and cut wood for his sculpture pieces. Just as many kids creatively use sand on the beach to build sand castles, Addo had used moistened sawdust as a child to build wondrous creations. Incorporating such a familiar medium into his work in adulthood came naturally to Addo.
Additionally, it was important for Addo to use environmentally friendly materials. Passionate about the sustainability of the planet and leaving the environment intact for the next generation and beyond, he produces 95 percent of his artworks using environmentally preferred materials. He has now perfected the method of recycling sawdust to create various types of sculpture and relief works.
Currently, Alfaddo Art Studio is headquartered in Johannesburg, South Africa, yet nearly all of Addo’s work is produced in Ghana. He has successfully exhibited all over Africa and in New York City, and is excited to be represented in Santa Fe for the first time this summer.
Explore the Art Santa Fe Spotlight Artists archive. View amazing artists with outstanding talent from past show ASF shows!
Jeffrey Bisaillon was born in upstate New York into an artistic family that was rich in creativity. He attributes his father’s love of photography, his grandfather’s love of painting, and his great uncle’s love of illustrating as the catalyst that led him on his creative path. Bisaillon’s artistic abilities were always nurtured, and from a young age he displayed artistic abilities.
Interestingly, although he did not attend art school, Bisaillon pursued careers that allowed him artistic freedom. As if it were all a well-orchestrated plan, his many years as a pastry chef and his 15+ years as a fine craftsman and builder gave him many of the skills necessary for him to become the artist that he is today.
Bisaillon has painted in many genres throughout the years, but his biggest connection has been with the abstract. Most of his work is achieved through his process of applying and removing paint in methodic layers of color and technique. He is in constant search of that perfect fusion of color and allure in order to entice one’s freedom of thought and emotion. His current abstracts have a clean, modern edge. The pairing of vibrant colors, bold brushwork, and resin finishes create energetic pieces that jump off the wall. He is fascinated by making the simplest shapes into things of beauty.
A contemporary landscape painter born and raised in Duluth, Minnesota, Mary Johnston grew up with a sense that the natural world we live in is more beautiful and mysterious then we will ever know. The natural elements she observed in her childhood on the Great Lakes—large expansive sky, peaceful water, quiet green forests, the rocks and wind through the grass—dominate her work today.
After graduating from the University of Minnesota, Duluth, Johnston and her husband moved to New Jersey, exposing her to the great art museums and galleries of New York City and to the Somerset Art Association in Bedminster, NJ. It was there that Johnston learned to really be an artist, honing her craft and showing and selling her work. After a stint in California, soaking up the gorgeous colors and views of the Pacific Ocean, followed by more time in NJ, Johnston moved to Indiana in 2003, where she began working with oils, the medium from which she has built her business.
As a busy working artist in Carmel, IN, Johnston travels to shows throughout the United States, and is represented by select galleries, design firms, and art-consultant groups. Though she spent many years in the arts field working in different mediums, Johnston’s large-scale contemporary oils are her current passion. Her work often depicts a sense of vastness, which she attributes to her time spent in the expansive-skied Midwest and the great open spaces of the Western U.S. and Canada.
Born and raised in Denver, Colorado, and influenced by her photographer mother, artist Holly Grimm grew up with a passion for drawing already coursing through her veins. A graduate of Stanford University, where she double majored in studio art and engineering, Grimm counts Abstract Expressionism (particularly the work of Helen Frankenthaler), Chinese painting, and Navajo rug designs among her strongest influences.
In her paintings, Grimm works to create abstraction from nature. While she used to rely on her own photographs of natural and urban landscapes to paint, today she prefers to paint outdoors, traveling to various permaculture farms in dryland Native American communities to work. She begins by laying down her colors with pastels, using that as a template for larger acrylic paintings. Using this plein-air approach, Grimm aims to capture the vital energy of the earth in a way that gives the viewer an opportunity to meditate on the images and feel the life force that brought them to fruition.
Artist Siri Hollander was born in New York in 1959 and lived most of her childhood in Andalusia, Spain. Influenced by a family of artists, she began sculpting at the age of seventeen. Seemingly isolated from normalcy, Hollander established a connection with the horses and other animals that surrounded her in her youth. By apprenticing with several accomplished sculptors both in America and Spain, she developed her own sculptural form based on her unique subjects, horses and figurative forms.
Hollander’s sculptural medium combines steel and cement, creating her trademarked texture that, when cast in bronze, brings her sculptures to life. The freestanding sculptures range from monumental pieces to smaller tabletop works. With extraordinary focus and conviction, Hollander works independently of the trends in art movements. Her art flows naturally from her daily life, without dependence on outside factors. She has become a master of three-dimensional images of horses and more recently has developed her figure sculptures, greatly influenced by the emotional impression in the sculptures of modern masters. Hollander’s self-taught process constructs the sculptures with no sketches or maquettes, working directly with steel and recycled metal to combine realism and abstraction, emphasizing the rough essence of the subject.
Art Santa Fe features a wide platform of cutting-edge programs highlighting established and emerging artists.
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