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Inspired Project Artist Cross Pollination Connection

  • Vocational Technical Building 218 4th Street Paonia, CO, 81428 United States (map)

Elsewhere Studios is pleased to announce progress in our INSPIRED: Art at Work developments. We selected four projects for our Summer 2018 program of socially-engaged art, INSPIRED: Art at Work. We will host 2 art-projects from the North Fork Valley, and 2 visiting artists-in-residence at Elsewhere Studios in Paonia, CO. 

You’re invited to Elsewhere Studios’ Artist Cross-Pollination-Connection:

WHAT: Quick Q & A rounds that introduce artists to each other, help project partners know the artists, and artists know the project partners, identify pathways of interest, enhance engagement, and welcome the artists.
WHO: All artists, project partners, and our science/advisory group, and any interested folks!
WHY: Find particular ‘sparky’ liaisons between artists and others, share context about North Fork Valley overall. Brunch-nosh and good cheer provided.


Clara Pena- FILM
I entered the art world through the side door. My degree is in biology--in college I studied parasites--but it became clear that my passion is visual communication. After earning my undergraduate degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder, I produced short films including educational science videos for Rocky Mountain PBS and a documentary about coal mining in the North Fork Valley featured in the Aspen Shortsfest Film Festival. I am now living the dream in rural Western Colorado, teaching high school graphic design, web design, and video production. In my spare time, I help maintain my family's 50-acre farm where we are re establishing my grandfather's apple orchard and raising chickens, ducks, pigs, and a dog. 
PROJECT COLLABORATORS: Matt Jenkins and John Steele, screenwriters and educators from Montrose, CO. Originally from the Tennessee Valley, Matt Jenkins studied film, drama, literature, and business at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Western State Colorado University, and Arizona State. John Steele is the STEM/Gifted Education Coordinator for the Montrose County School District. He has been an English teacher at Montrose High School for four years and a lecturer in English, Creative Writing and Film at Western State Colorado University for five years. He holds an MFA in Creative Writing and recently won Montrose High School Teacher of the Year. Matt and John recently received the 2017 Telluride Film Festival’s City Lights Project award, providing ten Colorado high school students and educators free festival accommodations, VIP debut passes for fifteen feature films in five days, along with master-classes with Oscar winning filmmakers, actors, writers, and directors.

Living in rural northwest Ireland has given Anna a strong interest in communities undergoing rapid change through climate change and post industrialisation. Her work of the last seven years, ‘Water Conversations,’ has taken place in nine countries; the collaborative aspect of the work has led to working partnerships with artists, scientists, cultural geographers, activists, engineers and local historians. She has received numerous artistic awards and residencies.

Christine Palafox and Tanya Blacklight- DANCE
Christine immerses herself in storytelling, dance and ritual— contemplative movement has opened her capacity for the mindful, outrageous and playful. Nature's imagery and elements serve as an inspirational resource for the artistic pieces she creates. Natural elements lend themselves well to evoking meaningful archetypal metaphors, and powerful imagery for emotional impact and interconnectedness. To this end, she has applied the expressive arts to such issues as developing resiliency in elementary- and middle school-aged at risk Latino girls, in violence and racism prevention, in peace work, environmental dance and performances celebrating a “sense of place.” 
Tanya's creativity was transformed by the births of 2 daughters and living in Colorado, where she has become herself via motherhood, community, and time in nature. Influenced by natural cycles, metaphysics, collective biorhythms and psyche, her work is translated into modern day storytelling via the human form. She enjoys working with fabric, paint, film, stone, and metal to create a multimedia message.

John Melvin is an international artist intent on distilling a meaning of ecology relevant to society. He typically up-cycles materials that have passed their traditional use. A majority of his practice is intended or situated in the public realm. He has produced site specific installations all over the world.