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Artist Statements & Bios

Mary Baum

Mary Baum is a multidisciplinary artist based in California. Her work deals with themes of belief and mysticism, the connection between the natural and spiritual worlds, and the relationship between magic and miracle. She received her BFA from Brigham Young University (UT) and her MFA from Maryland Institute College of Art (MD). She has exhibited internationally at Gallery 303 (UT), the MIA show (CA), Alice Gallery (UT), the Wye (Berlin, Germany), Arlington Arts Center (VA), Towson University (MD), CONNERSMITH (DC), and School 33 Art Center (MD)and IA&A at Hillyer (DC). You can see more of her work on instagram @mary.baum and at her website at


Julia Clouser

My work rotates around themes of perception, memory, and place. I use photography, text, and video to understand how we perceive or fail to perceive moments in their natural context, and how this can expose the tension between the familiar fading away and the unfamiliar appearing. I use imagery appropriated from my grandfather’s 8mm films shot in Florida throughout the 1960s and 70s; these films were shot on a camera that unexpectedly exposed the film outside of its standardized frame, creating moments existing only in the film’s margins. By appropriating the space where the image has bled out of the frame, I am also creating a space for overlooked moments to be noticed within projects that require the labor of reading images.

Julia Clouser (b. 1992 Clearwater, Florida) is a multidisciplinary artist based in Baltimore, MD. She completed her MFA in Multidisciplinary Art from the Mount Royal School of Art at Maryland Institute College of Art in 2019 and her BFA in Fine Art Photography from the Corcoran College of Art + Design in 2014. Julia was selected as the 2019-2020 recipient of the MFA Fellowship Studio at the Bromo Seltzer Arts Tower where her current studio practice takes place. She has been a participating artist in the 2020 and 2022 ICA Flat File Program in Baltimore, MD and the Transformer FlatFile collection in Washington, DC. Her work has been shown in galleries and museums nationally, including a recent solo exhibition at Hunter Gallery in Rhode Island.


Mike Hansel

Mike Hansel is a fine art sculptor who uses welded sculptures to point people away from what they take for granted toward an oddly humorous world composed of vaguely familiar elements. They are re-invented associations made between careful observations and selected elements from memory.

The contrasting relationship between hard and soft forms is the basic component of how I interpret things visually. An interest in the elements of line, plane, and volume has led to gestural compositions that point toward themes like balance, support, instability, and

The careful placement of form references the structure of the human figure while searching for spatial orientation that affects our perception of mass.


The geometry of interacting segments of steel somehow establishes an unlikely duality with the soft organic patterns found in nature. These small compositions begin as three-dimensional drawings, part of an exploration for designs that will be realized at a much larger scale.

The concept of “context” refers to the circumstances that form the setting for an idea in terms
of which the artwork can be fully understo
od and assessed. Our perception of Sculptural form is
profoundly affected by the context in which it appears.

Sculptor and Art Educator, Mike Hansel received his BFA from the University of Cincinnati in 1986 and his MFA from the University of Pennsylvania in 1989. Living most of his life in New England, he currently resides in Middletown, RI where he teaches studio art and builds on his practice of making contemporary art. Hansel’s work is known for his ability to create highly crafted objects, referencing organic forms that contradict what is expected from industrial materials. Hansel welcomes the opportunity to collaborate with design professionals to create artwork that is meaningful and visually intriguing while also maintaining a high standard of craftsmanship. Living and working in Rhode Island, the influence of the ocean can be quite profound. The exposure to the beaches, boats, and fishing industry of this state, coupled with extensive training in the visual arts has led to an interest in the weightless, buoyant quality of marine life. Hansel’s sculptures are freestanding objects that are unencumbered by any static elements. Supporting systems have been used to imply movement and therefore make reference to the liberated and spontaneous nature of organic life. Over 30 years as an art educator has involved a daily commitment to working with a broad variety of people to share ideas and find innovative methods of promoting understanding and enthusiasm for visual art.


Mahsa R. Fard

Mahsa R Fard, is an artist born and raised in Tehran, Iran. Having studied painting at the School of Art and Architecture in Tehran, she later pursued her graduate studies at the Maryland Institute College of Art in the United States, earning an MFA in painting in 2019. Mahsa has been based in New York and actively participates in group and solo exhibitions both nationally and internationally.

With a deep awareness of the prevalent patriarchal gaze within Iranian society, Mahsa's work explores the complexities of navigating masculine structures as a woman. Through her paintings, she represents these societal dynamics and employs various strategies to challenge and question them. Her art delves into alternative possibilities and scenarios, offering a nuanced perspective on how to maneuver within these frameworks.


Karen Roarke

I enjoy observing the world I inhabit - both interior and exterior spaces.


Through the plastic properties of acrylic paint on surfaces, I reference and explore details, patterns, colors, and other formal elements encountered in my surroundings, which delight my senses.

Though inspired by landscapes, I engage in non-representational painting because my attraction to color, light, transparency, fluidity, and pattern takes primacy over image recreation. I am drawn to mark-making and the interaction of positive and negative spaces, where light interacts and color energizes.

Karen Roarke grew up in Cranston, Rhode Island. After graduating from Boston College in 1984, where she majored in Studio Art, Karen moved to the beaches of Southern California. In 1988 she earned a Master of Art degree in Drawing & Painting from California State University, Fullerton. Continuing her studies at The Claremont Graduate University, Roarke received the Emily Ann Horowitz Fellowship and was awarded a Master of Fine Art degree in January 1990. In 1994 she moved from downtown Los Angeles to New York City and three years later settled near the ocean in Middletown, Rhode Island. Roarke taught visual arts and served as Director of the Hunter Gallery at St. George's School from 2013-2019. In addition to working in her Middletown studio, Karen is a scenic artist employed in motion pictures and television. Roarke’s work, exhibited locally and internationally for over 30 years, is included in the collections of Fidelity Investments, Nestlé Corporation, KVH Industries, and Tokai Bank and in numerous private collections.


Edward-Victor Sanchez

A representation and homage to the relationship of identity and individuality in the function of the ideas and structures that make up society.

Edward-Victor Sánchez es un artista multidisciplinario nacido en Nueva York y que trabaja en Puerto Rico y Cincinnati.


Creció los campos de Puerto Rico donde desarrolló un interés por la naturaleza, la comunidad y las Artes.


Desde su infancia estudió dibujo y pintura, y en su adultes temprana, Edward-Victor see licenció en pintura en la Escuela de Artes Plásticas de San Juan y obtuvo un grado de maestría en estudios multidisciplinares con especialización en estudios críticos en el Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) de Baltimore.


Su práctica artística aborda elementos del clima sociopolítico de Puerto Rico. En sus obras más recientes, explora las nociones de separación, segregación y obstrucción. Barricadas, muros y objetos descuidados retratan sus sentimientos hacia el moment socioeconómico que vivimos hoy en día.


Actualmente trabaja como profesor en la Universidades de Cincinnati y del Turabo en Puerto Rico.


Edward-Victor Sanchez is a multidisciplinary artist born in New York and working in Puerto Rico and Cincinnati.


He grew up in the countryside of Puerto Rico where he developed an interest in nature, community, and the arts.


From childhood he studied drawing and painting, and in his early adulthood, Edward-Victor received a BFA in painting from the School of Visual Arts in San Juan and an MFA in multidisciplinary studies with a minor in critical studies from the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in Baltimore.


His artistic practice addresses elements of Puerto Rico's socio-political climate. In his most recent works, he explores notions of separation, segregation, and obstruction. Barricades, walls, and neglected objects portray his feelings about the socioeconomic moment we live in today.


He currently teaches at the University of Cincinnati and the University of Turabo in Puerto Rico.


Madeline A. Stratton

My work is an investigation of the memory and importance of domestic objects and spaces. Utilizing traditional media such as paint and textiles in vibrant colors and patterns, I challenge myself to create architectural representations stemming from my memory. By creating silhouettes of objects and simplified structures of empty spaces, I am to convey both absence and belonging. I search for ways to memorialize the objects of daily ritual and the spaces in which they take place, including by incorporating embellishments of glitters, rhinestones, and fabric on the painted surfaces. While drawing from places and times specific to me, I hope the viewer can enter into a reflective journey of their own space and memory.

Madeline A. Stratton (b. 1987) is a multidisciplinary artist and educator originally from Memphis, TN, currently living and working in Washington, DC. In 2018, she completed her Multidisciplinary MFA in the Mount Royal School of Art at Maryland Institute College of Art where she received a merit scholarship. She holds an MA in History of Art and the Art Market from Christie’s Education and a BA in Studio Art and History of Art from Vanderbilt University. She has exhibited in group exhibitions throughout the United States including the Kreeger Museum, as well as solo exhibitions in Washington, DC. In 2018, she completed the Keyholder Residency at Pyramid Atlantic Art Center in Hyattsville, MD, where she later stayed on as a Printshop Associate. In 2021, she was a recipient of the DC Commission of the Arts and Humanities Art Bank Grant. In her work, she enjoys exploring ideas of memory and the juxtaposition of presence and absence. Stratton was a member of the Sparkplug Collective with DC Arts Center, and she was a 2019-2022 Hamiltonian Fellow. When not in her studio, Stratton currently teaches upper school art at St. Albans School.


Boyd Totin

Boyd Totin, creates sculptures and sculptural furniture that blend the natural world and technology to develop components of his imagined world. He is drawn to the intricate patterns and forms in tree growth and mineral formations and strives to capture their beauty and complexity in his work. He is particularly interested in how trees and minerals emerge from the earth and grow in response to their environment. His sculptures give the perception of growth, with geometric shapes emerging from organic forms. 

To create his sculptures, he first uses 3D modeling and 3D printing to sketch maquettes, or small models, of his ideas. Then, he uses traditional stack-lamination and carving techniques involving layering wood blocks to create the final sculptures. His methods draw connections to atoms and pixels as building blocks and reflect his interest in the merging of art, nature, and technology, with a focus on 

Steve is originally from New Castle, PA, but now lives in Rhode Island and has a studio in Fall River, Mass. He is a multidisciplinary artist who focuses on sculpture. He has exhibited his work in dozens of shows across the east coast. He currently has work on display in the Overlap Gallery in Newport, RI, and he was recently awarded an emerging artist grant from the St. Botolph Club in Boston, Mass. You can see more of his work on his website – or on his Instagram @boydtotin


Amy Wetsch

My work explores the biological and geological processes of the natural world, which, despite rigorous study, remain shrouded in mystery. I examine the hidden intricacies and interdependencies that elude our limited field of vision. My interest in these subjects sprouted from my fascination surrounding “invisible” disorders of the human body, a curiosity stemming from my own autoimmune diagnosis as a child. Starting from an exploration of human health, my focus has broadened to encompass the Earth’s vitality and modern challenges. At present, I am captivated by the Earth's ever-changing geological formations, concurrently immersing myself in the captivating world of extremophiles that thrive within seemingly inhospitable environments. These microorganisms inhabit diverse landscapes, including volcanic rock, deep sea vents, geysers, hypersaline lakes, and hot springs. Through this exploration, I draw parallels between these phenomena and the delicate balance of resiliency and fragility within the human body, while gaining insights into what is truly necessary for life to survive and thrive. 

Amy is a multidisciplinary artist and educator originating from Louisville, KY, currently living and working in Durham, NC. Her practice spans from creating installations, paintings, drawings, and mixed media sculptures to publicly engaged works. Amy received her BFA from Western Kentucky University and her MFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art. Amy has exhibited her work in various galleries and museums, including The Kentucky Museum, The Queens Museum, The National Academy of Sciences, and in galleries throughout NYC. She has attended multiple artist residencies, such as SÍM in Iceland, Superbude in Austria, and Works on Water in NYC. She has been selected for various honors and fellowships, such as a Johns Hopkins Extreme Arts Fellow, a National Academy of Sciences Fellow, and a More Art Engaging Artist Fellow. Amy is also a lead artist on the newly selected NASA mission, Dragonfly.


Summer Zickefoose

Shouting Through the Distance and Across the Sea are part of a series of ceramic objects that serve to enhance, stifle, or focus the ways we interact with the world. The project reimagines familiar technology, such as cameras, megaphones, and telescopes, in more rudimentary and organic forms, honing in on the abstract and sensory desires that brought about their invention. The objects are displayed in ways that encourage interaction, allowing the meaning to shift alongside the varied interactions.


An ongoing interest in the relationship between ceramics and performance art has led to investigating our interactions with functional objects. Clay’s ability to mimic other materials, while simultaneously asserting both fragility and the organic, are put to use within sculptural series. Projects include detailed representations of objects whose functions are political in nature. In others, the function appears benign on the surface, but additional imagery leads the viewer to understand the object’s specific visceral use.  Decorative and accessible qualities of commonplace objects are useful veneers for exploring more raw human experiences.

Summer Zickefoose is an interdisciplinary artist residing in northeast Ohio. She received a BA in Art History and a BFA in Studio Art from the University of Iowa in 2000, and received an MFA in Multimedia Art and Ceramics from the University of Florida in 2004. Her sculptures, performances, videos, and installations have been exhibited both nationally and internationally. Summer has been an artist-in-residence at the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts in Nebraska City, Nebraska; Flaxart Studios in Belfast, Northern Ireland; and at the Field's Project in Oregon, Illinois. She also works with a performance art collaborative, The Brick Factory. They have organized two residencies around themes of ceramics and performance: Actions + Material and The Object’s Not the Point, at Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts in Newcastle, Maine. Zickefoose currently teaches ceramics, sculpture, fiber, foundations, and art history courses at Westminster College in New Wilmington, Pennsylvania. 


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