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Kathryn Usher

Kathryn Usher

About Artist

Basic Information

  • Artist Statement

    ARTIST STATEMENT

    I think of myself as an idea generator, first. Once the concept forms I explore what tools work best. A recent project was a public art mural. For it, I utilized bright chunks of Play-doh and an iPhone 7 plus. I shot an image that was then made into a vinyl wrap and applied to a building.

    My current textile pieces feel soft yet strong like the mother-comfort of a blanket swaddling a newborn. It is an out-growth of the Nick Cave/AS IS residency. I fabricate textile sculptures and jewelry blasting out ridiculous colors and textures.

    My writings are succinct – a hold over from my radio broadcasting career - whether a word drawing, personal essay or short story. "Say it in two minutes or don't say it." But my compact writings are also of our current time. They hover around the length of - “a 140 character Tweet", a piece of street art read from the front seat of a car, or a "Garage Sale this Saturday" posted sign.

    All my work is rooted in the American South. Dixie Overland Highway jutted with tattoo shops, bars, pawn shops, and churches. Loops cut into a red dirt track by racehorses. B-52s that take-off, circle, land, repeat. Childhood road trips with my dad as he traveled the Mid-South making wrestling spot shows. Day trips with my mom as we drove Oklahoma dirt roads to visit relatives. Running stitches in quilts — very similar to the copious stretch marks my body makes.
  • Resume

    BIOGRAPHY

    Kathryn has experimented with a number of art forms since studying theatre at Oklahoma Arts Institute in the late 70s. She was recently chosen as a Critic’s Choice Collectible Artist by San Diego art critic Robert Pincus. In January 2016, she was a featured artist in art critic Dave Hickey's latest book "Wasted Words." It is an experimental work on social media and art. In 2014 she was awarded an Art Ambassador grant by the Shreveport Regional Arts Council, which allowed her to exhibit at Oxford Museum in the UK. In the early 1990s, Louisiana selected her to be on their state artist roster. Kathryn's art education included studies at the Oklahoma Arts Institute with photographer Richard Avedon, painter Fritz Scholder and poet William Stafford.

    Kathryn landed her first radio position in 1980. That kicked off twenty years of writing and performing as an on air broadcaster. Radio allowed her to create daily and support her family. She followed her father's example of making a living as an artist (he was a professional wrestler/performance artist). Along the way, she broadcast her radio show in Florida at Disney World and hit stages in Los Angeles, Houston, and Dallas to perform stand-up comedy.

    In the early 90s Kathryn was selected by the Louisiana State Arts Council to be a member of their artist roster. From there she began working with the Shreveport Regional Arts Council as a literary artist-in-residence. Her experience in the classroom as a visiting literary artist led to her visual work. Visual images were her tool to reach students who weren't comfortable expressing themselves using words or performing.

    In the early 2000s Kathryn discovered blogging. It was an efficient way for her to publish writings and photography.

    She creates visual images and word drawings using paint, textiles, digital cameras, and most recently iPhones. She has used a number of apps to create and publish her work — Instagram, Facebook, Vine, DoodleBuddy, Hyperlapse, and Boomerang.

    Kathryn believes art should be of its time. In 2017 that means embracing the brief, the fluorescent and the digital.

    Some of the themes she is exploring — gender expectations, the hero's journey when the hero stays in/at the home-place, softness/protection, and the American South.

    RESUME

    SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
    2017
    Et Tu, Art Brute?, Andrew Edlin Gallery, New York, NY (curator Jamie Sterns)
    InGRAVED, Artspace, Shreveport, LA (Artistic Director William Joyce)
    Artspace Artist Studios, Artspace, Shreveport, LA
    Collectible Artists Exhibition, Central Art Station, Shreveport, LA
    Critical Mass V, Artspace, Shreveport, LA (Artistic Director William Joyce Critics Curator Robert Pincus)
    2016
    The Making of As Is by Nick Cave, Artspace, Shreveport, LA (Artistic Directors Nick Cave and Bob Faust)
    HOSTS Artists at Work, Turner Art Center, Shreveport, LA (Artistic Director Bruce Allen)
    Critical Mass IV, Artspace, Shreveport, LA (Artistic Director William Joyce Critics Curator Robert Pincus)
    2015
    Critical Mass III, Artspace, Shreveport, LA (Artistic Director William Joyce Critics Curator Robert Pincus)
    2014
    Alice 3.0, Museum of Oxford, Oxford, UK (Artistic Director Dr. Melissa Westbrook)
    Critical Mass II, Artspace, Shreveport, LA (Artistic Director William Joyce Critics Curator Robert Pincus)
    2013
    Critical Mass, Artspace, Shreveport, LA (Artistic Director William Joyce Critics Curator Robert Pincus)
    2012
    Xmas Under da Ground, Minicine? Swampland, Shreveport, LA (Artistic Director David Nelson)
    Bonafide! 2, Artspace, Shreveport, LA (Artistic Director William Joyce)
    Common Seen, Artspace, Shreveport, LA (Curator Neil Johnson permanent exhibit at Central Artstation)
    Artists-at-Work, Meadows Museum, Shreveport, LA (Juror Connie Bostic)
    Street Art, En Plein Air Gallery Shreveport, LA (Artistic Director and curator Nadine Charity)
    2011
    Presents, Artspace, Shreveport, LA (Artistic Director William Joyce)
    Dia de Los Muertos, Minicine? Swampland, Shreveport, LA
    Texas Avenue Midnight Special, Minicine? Swampland, Shreveport, LA
    Impromptu, Artspace, Shreveport, LA (Artistic Director William Joyce Critic Robert Pincus)

    SELECTED SOLO EXHIBITIONS
    2013
    Red Juicy Vibrations, Meadows Museum, Shreveport, October – December (Juror Connie Bostic)

    SELECTED PROJECTS
    2018
    Artist of seven beaded blankets selected for public art installation, Shreveport Common, funded by the NEA
    2017
    Artist/mural designer Shreveport UNCommon Murals (Artistic Director Lesli Marshall)
    2016
    Nick Cave "AS IS"
    "AS IS" Art Dcumentary, produced by Moviesauce Productions
    "AS IS" exhibition book featuring beaded blankets and essays on the blankets
    2015
    Nick Cave "AS IS"
    Highland Open Studio Tour Sundays (HOSTS) (Featured artist and artist studio)
    2014
    Highland Open Studio Tour Sundays (HOSTS) (Featured artist and artist studio)
    Red River Revel Festival, (Featured Artist of the Day)
    UNSCENE! Wayne White, July (On site Wayne White mask collaboration)
    UNSCENE! Rich Table, June (Commissioned letter sculptures)
    UNSCENE! Airlift Music Houses, May studio assistant
    UNSCENE! Airlift Music Houses, May (Wind Balls kinetic sculptures)
    UNSCENE! Stan Lewis, March 10 foot tall Three Breasted Guitar Woman puppet sculpture)
    2013
    UNSCENE! Let's Maker a Parade, November (Artistic Director Brandon Oldenburg)
    UNSCENE! We Are the Residents Virtual parade, October, (Artistic Director Brandon Oldenburg, Curators Rob Peterson and Robert Greenwood)
    Kallenberg Tower Gallery, SRAC, Shreveport, LA (Artistic Director and curator Kathryn Usher)
    LAS Labor Art Sweat Guerrilla Drop-In Artist Residency, SRAC, Shreveport, LA (Co Artistic Directors Nadine Charity and Kathryn Usher)
    Texas Avenue Midnight Special, One of three artists who documented the new
    downtown home of the Shreveport Regional Arts Council – Central Artstation
    Co-Artistic Directors Nadine Charity and Kathryn Usher

    AWARDS AND HONORS
    2017
    Best of Discipline:Literary (InGRAVED/Artspace)
    Northwest Louisiana Artists Roster, SRAC (Juror Robert Pincus)
    Culture Crush Collectible Artist (Critics Curator Robert Pincus)
    2015
    Common Culture Collectible Artist (Critics Curator Robert Pincus)
    2014
    Art Ambassador grant by the Shreveport Regional Arts Council
    2013
    Artist as Entrepreneur, The Arts Council of New Orleans, SRAC, Shreveport, LA
    2012
    First Prize, The Friends of the Algur Meadows Museum Poetry Contest in conjunction with the artwork “Matador” by Monica Zeringue, Shreveport, LA (Juror Louisiana Poet Laureate Julie Kane)
    Northwest Louisiana Artists Roster, SRAC (Juror Brett Campbell)

    SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY
    Tiana Kennell, “25 NWLA Artists You Need to be Collecting Now!”, Shreveport Times, March 30, 2017
    Bonnie Culverhouse, “April Culture Crush”, Forum News, March 29, 2017
    Gwynned Vitello, "Nick Cave in Shreveport," Juxtapoz, April 2016
    Danielle Georgiou, "Suited Up" Theater Jones Reviews, March 23, 2016
    Dorothy Kendrick, "Nick Cave As Is" LPB Art Rocks!, February 26, 2016
    Adam Duvernay, "Nick Cave brings ‘the beginning of something special,'" Shreveport Times, January 25, 2016
    Tori Bush, "Interview with Nick Cave," Daily Serving, December 4, 2015
    "$190,000 Grant Will Support Nick Cave's Artist Residency in Shreveport," Artforum, November 14, 2015
    Tiana Kennell, "It's Like Sesame Street on Acid," Shreveport Times, July 29, 2015
    Jada Durden, “Five Things to do in Shreveport this Weekend,” Shreveport Times, April 2, 2015
    Courtney Spradlin, “Some SBC Artists Struggle for Return on Investment,” Shreveport Times, August 18, 2014
    Miles Oliver, “Local Artist Profile: Kathryn Usher,” Heliopolis, October 3, 2013
    Su Stella, “Krusher,” Louisiana Road Trips, July/August, 2013
    Lauren Buscemi, “Art Critique 'Critical Mass',”The Forum, March 20, 2013
    Robert Trudeau, “Louisiana's Poet Julie Kane…,” Shreveport Blog, November 2, 2012
    Kelly Phelan Powell, “Artist Profile Kathryn Usher,” The Forum, September 5, 2012

    SELECTED LECTURES
    Artist Talk,"Grow Your Art Business with Highland Open Studio Tour Sundays," Artspace, Shreveport, LA, 2017
    Artist Talk, Artist-in-Residence "Making of the Beaded Blankets," Artspace, Shreveport LA 2016

    SELECTED COLLECTIONS AND COMMISSIONS
    Wayne White and Mimi Pond, CA
    Evan and Sarah Rich, CA
    Brandon Oldenburg, LA
    Fitch Brothers, PA
    Sue Kreitzman, London, UK
    Shreveport Regional Arts Council, LA
    Sandi Kallenberg, LA
    Melissa Albritton, LA
    Judy Williams, LA
    Pam and Bob Atchison, LA
    The Honorable Cedric Glover, Mayor of the City of Shreveport, LA
    Penne Mobley, LA
    Jodie Glorioso, LA
Member since
Wednesday, 08 July 2015 00:00
Last online
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    Created by Nadine Charity and Kathryn Usher. 2015-2016. Photos of blankets via SRAC and Neil Johnson. The Art of AS IS by Nick Cave was exhibited at...
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  • Kathryn Usher commented on this photo

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    Recent works of visual art and word drawings by Kathryn Usher. Album includes literary samples - word drawings based in the American South, and...

  • Kathryn Usher commented on this photo

    6 months ago

    Recent works of visual art and word drawings by Kathryn Usher. Album includes literary samples - word drawings based in the American South, and...

  • Kathryn Usher commented on this photo

    6 months ago

    Recent works of visual art and word drawings by Kathryn Usher. Album includes literary samples - word drawings based in the American South, and...

  • Kathryn Usher commented on this photo

    6 months ago

    Recent works of visual art and word drawings by Kathryn Usher. Album includes literary samples - word drawings based in the American South, and...

  • Kathryn Usher commented on this photo

    6 months ago

    Recent works of visual art and word drawings by Kathryn Usher. Album includes literary samples - word drawings based in the American South, and...

  • Kathryn Usher commented on this photo

    6 months ago

    Recent works of visual art and word drawings by Kathryn Usher. Album includes literary samples - word drawings based in the American South, and...