A few months back I was contacted by one of the curators to see if I was interested in showing the #GreenThumbProject sketches in an upcoming show. This project started a s way of forcing myself to take a few minutes a day to draw a plant (just because I don't have that real life green thumb).
Thank you Rejin and all the staff that made this possible!
February 4–March 20, 2021
On view online and at JCAL
Miller Gallery by appointment only.
March 18, 2021, 6PM
via JCAL Youtube - RSVP
Jamaica Center for Arts & Learning (JCAL) is excited to partner with the Southeast Queens Artist Alliance (SEQAA) to present Process → Project: What Comes Out of Our Sketchbooks, curated by Rejin Leys and Damali Abrams.
In this exhibition, the curators invited members of SEQAA and guest artists from outside Southeast Queens to show pages from their sketchbooks and other works that show different aspects of the creative process. At a time when many people ask “How did we get here?” with regard to the current cultural moment, there is a general desire to analyze and retrace one’s steps. Though at the intimate scale of individual art-making, Leys and Abrams provide a platform for artists to reveal the building blocks and sometimes nonlinear routes that are travelled as they arrive at their final works.
Curatorial Statement: "Sketchbooks provide a behind the scenes look at the artistic process. In their sketches, artists test out ideas, record observations, practice skills, and plan future projects. This exhibition will present sketches, both loose and bound, by working artists with diverse practices: writing, painting, drawing, photography, collage, assemblage, sculpture, and paper-making. The shared act of sketching unites them.
Opening an artist's sketchbook can become a journey inside the artist's mind. Often representing intimate encounters with their thinking process, this invitation to experience such uninhibited experimentation is usually limited to those close to the artist, if at all. Public access to sketchbooks often become available only after the artist has died.
An exhibition of living artists’ sketchbooks provides perhaps more than a studio visit since multiple approaches to ideas are recorded that introduces the artist's practice and highlights the conscious work executed behind the scenes."
Featured artists: Damali Abrams, Laura Alvarez, Natali Bravo-Barbee, Ify Chiejina, Cecile Chong, Sherese Francis, iliana emilia garcia, Janet Olivia Henry, Jacqueline Herranz Brooks, Heather Holden, Marvenia Knight, Naomi Kuo, Rejin Leys, Carla Lobmier, Angela Miskis, Shervone Neckles, Selime Okuyan, Shenna Vaughn, Elizabeth Velazquez, and Lisa Wade.
This painting was created live during the ARTE virtual annual fundraiser. The attendants answered to the question: What does your vision of a more just world look like? And from those answers I took key words and created this painting. Soon the painting will be auctioned and will find a new home.
I really miss live art events. I miss talking to people, learning something from everyone. Interacting and being social. Sigh.
This end of year I put to good use my new studio and created one more triptych on bike rides, the last one of the year: My Landmark Bike Ride. Those three places have been very important during my life in the Bronx and have been turning points in my life. I am not usually interested in painting buildings, but those three are so special I wanted to try. I wanted to take you on my favorite bike ride, from Yankee Stadium, stopping by the NYC Botanical Gardens and finishing at Poe Park, where the Poe Cottage hosts the cutest museum in town.
I hope this new year treats us a little better and that everyone is safe and healthy during the next 365 days, at least! I leave you a timelapse from the paintings.
Hugs and Love,
Hello all. I finally finished my 100 drawings a day, I even made 102 without realizing. I created a short video to show you all the quick sketches together. It has been an interesting project, when during the 3 to 4 minutes that it took me to draw each plant I wasn't thinking of anything, I was just letting the brush flow and create those pseudo plants. For me it is kind of a meditation moment when I only focus on the ink flowing and mixing with the water.
The 5 sketchbooks will be part of a show at the Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning called: Process → Project: What Comes Out of Our Sketchbooks
The exhibition will have a wide variety of artists and will be on view from February 4 to March 20, 2021. I will be posting more information when I have it. So excited for this opportunity!
Curated by Juanita Lanzo
Exhibition on view from October 26 through December 12, 2020
Bronx River Art Center (BRAC), is pleased to announce this Fall’s exhibition JUSTICE in which four artists will activate the windows and gallery space at BRAC to create artworks that document, illustrate, converse and capture our shared humanity, pain, and joy, daily life struggles, and resilience. The works in the exhibition will be developed by ongoing public interactions by the artists in everyday or regular encounters with Bronx residents, visitors, and students at BRAC.
Participating artists Laura Alvarez, Rejin Leys, Tijay Mohammed, and Tammy Wofsey will create work in the space that will be installed on the windows and other spaces at BRAC, in a wide array of media (from paintings, drawings, and mixed-media installations that will be seen by West Farm Square/East Tremont Ave area residents and beyond).
JUSTICE will be a work in progress exhibition that takes place while NYS has been in lockdown, due to COVID-19, and has partially re-opened for families to work, go to school, and live in socially distanced terms, until further notice. The artists will present work that creates a dialogue around the racial and social disparities that were exacerbated by the Pandemic, resulting in the loss of thousands of Black, Brown, Asian and Indigenous lives, the disruption or total lack of education and social services to working-class and poor families, food insecurity and urban violence and police brutality.
I was approached to volunteer for a project I thought it was genius, pair artists with expecting mothers to paint their bellies with the vord VOTE. They asked every mother why they decided to do this in the times we are living, and all of them coincide that they are doing it for the future of their children.
Voting is your civil duty and your right. So many people died so we can vote, think about that. Vote for the ones that can't, the ones that are in prison, the ones at the hospital and can't go. Use your right.
Bump the Vote
This summer has been pretty interesting due to the pandemic. All the staple events have gone virtual or have been cancelled. This year it was the 10th anniversary of the New Village Music Festival and the organizers decided to do something small with a few artists and one band.
I was happy to come out and see people I haven't seen in a while. Painting outdoors is always plus! I decided I was going to create something for a friend that is having her second girl. I always like to gift Art, I try to think of something they will be able to use now but that it will last a little longer that only when they are babies. I created this two paintings so they realize how amazing they are and that Black Girls are MAGIC!
I've always liked plants, I work for NYC Parks and still I am a terrible plant care taker. I am never sure if what I am doing is good or not, and I end up doing something wrong (or not doing anything at all) and they end up dying.
I decided to start doing one drawing a day (quick drawing) with ink, I make up plants and flowers, record them on video (and post on Tik Tok) and take a picture for Instagram.
I have several ideas of what to create with the plants once I am done... I will keep you posted!!
Hola! I just started a Tik-Tok. I had an account for a while, but I wasn't sure what to upload. I am not much of a dancer on camera, so I decided to go with what I do best. Drawing.
I have a deep love for Nature, but I have not gotten a green thumb, so I started the #greenthumbproject with the idea of drawing a (fake, invented) flower/plant a day for 100 days. I am in day 9 and you can follow the videos here TikTok
I am a...
Graphic Designer, Illustrator, Educator, Community Activist... ARTIST!
All Images COPYRIGHT © 2008-2019, are property of Laura Alvarez Fernandez. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED