Jessica Laurel Reese is best known for using steel rod to create dynamic lines, forms, and planes that speak to her fascination with the natural world and the human form. She constructs each piece by bending steel rod by hand and using oxygen and acetylene gases to weld her points of contact. This work dances with the tension between two and three-dimensions, bringing us into our tactile and spatial minds as our eyes move around the canvas. Using a cold, industrial material such as steel, Reese successfully brings a softness and natural beauty to a normally utilitarian substance. Obtaining a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Sculpture with Distinction from California College of the Arts in San Francisco, Reese has been living and working creatively in Jerome, Arizona since 2013. More can be learned about the artist by visiting JessicaLaurelReese.com
I love working with clay – regular clay, paper clay and fiber clay. My passion, however, is
sculpting with Fiber clay. It’s very easy to work with and a very forgiving medium. My work tends to be very whimsical. If you walk by one of my pieces and it makes you smile, then I’ve done my job. The world we live in these days is fraught with anger, war, and discontent. If one of my sculptures takes your mind off your problems, even for a little while, then I am quite happy.
My other passion is teaching. Having been a public school teacher for 37 years, I have a love for sharing what I know. And now, I get to combine this passion with my passion for sculpting, and I am one happy woman!!! Being able to show a person how to create a sculpture and take away their fear of trying something new is thrilling to me. When a student walks out of class with a piece of art to be proud of…. Well, it doesn’t get any better than that!!!
I have been working on a new photographic project lately: Vehicles. Yes, I know, lots of people have taken lots of photos of cars and trucks. But I’m looking for something else. For over a century we have surrounded ourselves with motor vehicles. They are ubiquitous and serve as perfect mirrors for the human experience.
It struck me that the rears of vehicles frequently function as “mobile billboards”, sending messages conscious and unconscious, about the people who drive them. It’s the part of the vehicle that we see the most when we’re in traffic, and so it’s the part I photograph.
I isolate the vehicles on fields of black to focus the viewer on the vehicle and nothing else.
I also like to play with the more formal considerations of shape, color, and texture in the images: they make beautiful if unintentional, compositions.
Art for me has always been a way to escape reality and get feelings out in a tangible way so that others can truly understand what’s going through your heart not just your head. I’m inspired by real-life situations of love sadness and depression.
Heliotrope was founded in 2014 by Tucson based jeweler, Spring Winders. All pieces are designed, cast, and fabricated by the artist. The desert flora and fauna are the main inspiration behind the Heliotrope look. Sculptural adornment for the discerning human.
Mike Garcia is an award-winning representational artist working primarily in graphite and oils. He studies classical drawing and painting at Matt Dickson’s atelier in Tempe. Along with co-host Jedadiah Cracco, he runs and moderates life drawing open studios in the Metro Phoenix area, including the popular Drink and Draw at Changing Hands Bookstore. (See the link below for open studio information.) His personal artwork and methods draw inspiration from his art education as well as from historic and contemporary artistic movements. Mike lives and works in Phoenix, Arizona.