Originally from St. Louis, m. jo hart moved to Colorado in 2015 after receiving her MFA in Ceramics from Illinois State University. She has a B.A. in Visual Communications and has worked as an Art Director/Graphic Designer in the corporate sector, non-profit, and public/private design industries with over 35+ years experience. Hart considers herself both an artist and maker. She creates highly decorative functional pottery along with sculptural work that primarily focuses on female issues.
During her time as a designer she sought out ways to create for herself and was reacquainted with clay, remembering the fun she had in the clay studio as an undergrad. For years she attended classes at a local pottery studio and began selling her work. Later in her life an opportunity to apply to graduate school presented itself and she fully immersed herself in a 3-year program where she discovered a passion for working with the figure in clay, primarily on female issues. Attending graduate school as an older student, Hart was confronted with many hurdles and presented with countless opportunities for evolving as an artist.
Today, Hart works as an artist/maker, leaving the corporate world in the dust and no longer having to be contained in a cubicle. Recently she began collaborating with her partner, combining his woodworking craft and her porcelain art. Hart teaches workshops in clay and other mediums and finds the creative process at times more satisfying than the outcome. As a self-supporting artist her piggy bank is often not as full as it was but she wouldn’t trade this life for anything.
Hart can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
We asked the artists selected for our “Recycled Art” Show the following questions:
1)In a short paragraph, tell us about yourself
2)With your recycled materials, tell us about your process. Walk us through the steps to achieve one of your works from sourcing the materials to completing the work for display or use.
3)What is your favorite piece for sale at this event? And why?
4)What has inspired you to apply for this show?
5)Where can we find your work: website, social media, local stores.
What follows are responses we received and images of some of the work you’ll see in this show.
As a child I was surrounded by art and music as well as a deep culture and a diverse background, This pushed me to expand my horizons and tap in to the amazing world of painting.
I collect old snowboards that are not rideable. I get the boards from friends, family, the Goodwill and some local snowboard companies. I clean them up and add my inspired Colorado art work into them. I also add a protective clear coating.
All my pieces are unique and one of a kind, I will be adding my Pikes Peak Snowboard. I will also have a few pieces available for inventory in case this piece sells.
What has inspired you to apply for this show?
The distinction and originality that this shows brings.
Where can we find your work: website, social media, local stores. www.jlugoscreation.com
My first recollection, in knowing that I was a creative, was enhanced by my living on an old farm built in 1926. I spent many hours collecting the colorful pieces of broken glass, digging in the dirt for rusty objects, shards, and arrowheads. I relished exploring bones, feathers, and eggshells as well. Consoled by a Jumbo Coloring book, my mother used it in an attempt to keep me inside and quieted down.
Since those childhood days I have gone on to acquire a BFA in studio art with a concentration in fiber/textiles. I am a self-taught painter and quilter. My greatest success came in the 1980’s when painting on clothing was popular. It was an honor to sell my items all over the country including Disney Land, The Gene Autry Western Museum, Toney Lama and art meccas such as Aspen, Vail, Santa Fe, Taos, Los Angeles, and New York to name a few. I am a “jack of all trades and master of none”.
Being a collector over the years I began to have to start facing downsizing. It was time to start ridding myself of “stuff”. I just couldn’t let go of some beautiful objects—so I decided to start recycling those things into art.
The process for creating my pieces is a very long one. But basically, I dig through lots of “stuff” at flea markets, my house, other people’s houses, the dirt, visiting nature, resale stores and on and on. Sometimes the object gives me the idea and other times I have no idea where each individual piece will end up. It is very much like the work of a woodworker. There is a lot cleaning, deconstruction and then reconstruction. This can include sanding, refinishing, distressing, rusting, painting, nailing, drilling, screwing, gluing, tacking, cutting, sawing, soldering, and starting over!
My favorite piece that will be in the show is the one I call the Modern Angel. I think it is because one would not necessary identify the pieces applied to the object. It has a mouth harp on the front and old-fashioned ceiling tile embellishment. The tile is a replica of the original and made of a plastic. It feels inviting and open. I also enjoy that less is often more.
Inspiration for entering this show came from my daughter. I supported her and encouraged her to continue her music from age 8 to the present day. She started sending me the information on the show and “pushed” until I sent in the forms. “This is what you do isn’t it?”, she said.
My work can be found on Facebook and Instagram by searching my name: Shannon McGarraugh
Monica Y. Parker
I am a Colorado native, born and raised in Springs, but I have traveled and lived all over the U.S.
I come from a very large family and all of us are artists. We are motley crew of musicians and visual artists.
I have always been interested in creating art. Even from a young age I liked working with my hands. As an adult I have more access to resources and find that has fed my need to create. I love to use recycled products found objects and even trash a lot of my other artwork includes jewelry, mobiles, coasters made from recycled vinyl albums, up cycled furniture and suitcases. I am also a photographer and I love music.
Well, do i have to pick just one [favorite piece]? There was a time I felt like I was always being followed by a little black cloud, like in the cartoons only you couldn't see mine. Then I heard Ma, my mother-in-law say "sometimes baby girl you just have to learn to laugh at yourself cause there is nothing you can do to change it". So, I did and I made me a little black rain cloud and hung it over my seat, and every time I see it it makes me giggle inside. And I love the whimsy of both the cloud and the mushrooms. As soon as I see an interesting shape of a bowl or a vase I get super excited to get home and make something neat.
Just laugh at yourself. figured it out, keep your childlike imagination and look for the good in everything instead of the bad. They are just small reminders and both the mushrooms and the clouds just make me happy.
I am always creating something, and I love to share my stuff it is a great way to move beyond my circle of friends and family and this is also the first time ever doing something like this so it will be a new experience that I can learn from. And the art itself inspires me, all of the colors, styles, mediums and combined creativity of other artists. And this gallery that celebrates and showcases the variety and unique talents of so many different artists. That inspires me.
If you would like to see more of my stuff you can find me on different social media sites.
Facebook-Monica Parker The Crafty Bartender
Monica Parker - The Photographer
Etsy - Monica Parker The Crafty Bartender
I have always had an interest in making my own art. In my younger years I was an award-winning professional photographer. I then spent 30 years in the corporate world of healthcare. Recently retired, I have more time to return to creating art, this time around as a sculptor. I have just started this new artistic journey, and the two sculptures in the show are among my first efforts.
“Radialhead” is a cylinder head from a 1973 motorcycle that I happened to have in my spare parts. Recently I pulled it out, cleaned it up and realized that it’s a really cool metal art object. I also had a piece of red flagstone and together they looked right. The effect I wanted to create was something metallic flowing out of the earth. The cool part is that the “Radialhead” is also a musical instrument if you run your fingernails against the fins!
The second sculpture “Sun Mountain” is a representation of the spirit of Pikes Peak. The rock was found along the Rampart Range fault line and is millions of years old. The flying goddess is a 1930’s era car hood ornament that symbolizes freedom, flight and victory. This sculpture was the first of mine to use an independent stand so that the rock would be off the ground and three dimensional.
Generally, my favorite piece of work is the last one that I did. But for this show my favorite would have to be the “Radialhead” because it is the first sculpture that I completed, and it motivated me to continue my artistic vision.
I am currently working on a series of sculptures using 1950’s hood ornaments with natural native rock formations to evoke a feeling of other planetary worlds being visited by chrome flying machines and flying goddesses.
All of the material in my sculptures are recycled either from manmade metal or from the earth. This recycled show is a perfect forum for my rock metal art
Since childhood I have had an unquenchable creative spark. Whether I was drawing characters to cut out and play with or sculpting tiny doughnuts and pizzas from modeling clay, I was always making something. At some point, much later in life, I came across various electronic components and was fascinated by the intricate patterns of circuit boards and simple elegance of vacuum tubes. I began tinkering and ended up with some very unique pieces of jewelry.
Many of the materials I use come from discarded motherboards or hard drives. People will just give away these things once they’re obsolete. I also save any materials that look neat to me, like bottle caps. I have everything organized into various plastic bins. When I decide to make a new piece I’ll dig through these, holding up objects next to each other and imagining what they’d look like as a necklace or earrings or something else. I have a variety of tools to work with and can solder, hammer, drill, or saw the materials into whatever I wish.
It’s hard to hard to say what my favorite piece at this show is. I think my earrings made with the red bits of circuit board best represent what I do.
I had heard of the Recycled Art show in years past and this year I am fortunate enough to be a part of it. My jewelry made from recycled electronic components seemed like a natural fit.
I have an Etsy store called “darlatronic”, and a few pieces at Art 111.
Barb St. Clair
I have been painting since I was 10 years old. During the most productive years, I painted on everything from miniature furniture to full size pieces, antique coffee percolators, stools and anything I could find that was interesting. I like very busy detailed designs and I have even painted every scroll on the surface of antique oak chairs with a different pattern. I painted for 60 years but after the financial crash of 2008, things quit selling. Also, about 20 years ago my husband and I started an antique business and when rustic country products were popular we made barn wood bird houses and put antique door hardware, toys, and many kinds of bits on the bird houses. After the interest in that died down, I discovered that I had drawers full of interesting old “things” that were too good to just get rid of. I love working with different patterns and textures and colors, so I got the idea to make collages with the pieces. I also have added foreign coins and paper currencies left over from my husband’s foreign travels. The first collages I made were with personal items from our lives and then I expanded using all sorts of materials. I think the results are pleasing and I enjoy making them. I hope other people like them also.
It took time to figure out how to make the collages, so they would be sturdy and secure. I ended up using foam core board for the background and wire to hold most pieces on. I also used super glue to add extra strength to items. I have made several in shadow boxes that protect the items better and keep them clean, but I love the way the ornate frames help add to the richness of the entire feeling of the pieces.
Of the two that were accepted into this show, this is my favorite because it is large, ornate, and interesting.
I was inspired to apply for the recycled art show because I had not explored finding a venue for these collages yet, and before I put more time and energy into making them, I am curious to see if people liked them. I also find items made in the past to be rich in design and quality and I feel they should be appreciated in some way still.
The only way I can currently be contacted is by phone or email. My phone number is 719-389-1461, and email is email@example.com
I started getting into art at a very early age. My mother was very creative, so it came naturally, and she fed my creativity with finger paints, clay, colored paper and of course, Elmer’s glue! I majored in art in college but have made my living through other jobs. Whenever I tried to support myself with my art my creative juices would freeze up and I would be at a loss. So, I would skip the starving artist bit and do it in my free time. I have sold many, many “Glass from the Past” pieces, mostly in Crested Butte. I have 3 pieces left, one of which is being entered into the show. All the rest are in private collectors’ homes or offices and I am keeping 2 for myself. My old dumps now are where they’ve built condos so my glass supply ran out.
While living in Crested Butte, Colorado for a year and a half, I discovered numerous old dumps rom the 1800’s- 1960’s. Shards of glass, silverware, buttons, bottles and jars. The purple and royal blue glass were my favorite to discover and it was also the rarest to find. Actually, red was almost impossible to find. I never dug up the dirt in the dumpsites. They were large enough I didn’t have to and after every good soaking rain storm or snow, the natural erosion would unearth new pieces. I would take big white pickle buckets out to the sites and fill them about 1/2 full. Otherwise it was too heavy to carry back home. I would rinse the majority of the soil off with a hose in the back yard. Then I’d take the buckets, with clean water, sit in my living room and scrub each piece by piece with an old toothbrush, rinse it and let them dry. Once I had enough clean glass I would methodically arrange the glass into jars (with cork tops). These jars were of all sizes and shaped. I would lay pieces into the jar to emphasize the color of the piece of glass when it would be back lit. Windowsills were/are the best place to show off and get the most enjoyment of the colors and shapes. Old broken bottle necks, the top of the lid, I’d lay those in such a way so you could see through the top of the neck. It’s kind of hard to describe. You’ve gotta see it to appreciate it!
I am grateful I have a show to present my final piece that I am willing to part with. One collector called them “garbage in a jar”! I got a kick out of that.
What inspired me to enter this show? I check out the art entries section of The Independent often. This theme was right up my alley. I have 3 pieces left of this project which I created for years.
Metal Gutz Turner
My name is Chris Turner, I have always been an artist. As a kid I started out drawing and playing with Lego's. Now that I'm an older kid, I play with the Gutz of machinery and a welder. As a Small Engine Mechanic, I can source a lot of parts. I also have a few mechanic friends that throw me parts. Once I got a welder, all the junk I had laying around, became sculptures. Most of those sculptures were given to my friends. Those are the friends that pushed me into selling. It was hard to sell the first few sculptures, because I knew I would never see them again. Yes, there is an attachment to the art.
Because of where I get my parts, I named the company Metal Gutz Turner. I take the larger parts of the machinery and dig out the Gutz. This means most of the parts are saturated in oil or grease. I have to sweat out the oil with heat before I can get a good weld to the part. Most of my sculptures parts have already been made. I lay out the parts and modify it to be what I see. Weld together, wire wheel it, and then clear coat it.
The Duck is my favorite sculpture in the bunch. I found that similar artists follow and challenge each other, on Instagram. The Duck was my 1st entry into the #metal------challenge (#MetalDuckChallenge). I tried to impress, and the parts just made themselves. A lot of detail, with minimal effort.
I wanted to start selling, but what was the first step? I was scrolling through the Independent and saw the ad for the show. I did a little research and decided I would try it out. I know Manitou is one of the hubs for Colorado Artist's. What better place to start? What the Commonwheel Co-op requires to enter their show, is what kicked me into creating Metal Gutz Turner LLC.
MetalGutzTurnerllc@Instagram.com / MetalGutzTurner@Facebook.com / MetalGutzTurner.com(not set up yet).
By Leti Wesolowski, contributor
Figurative sculptor, painter, and art therapist, Marica Hefti is a Swiss-born artist who fell in love with art at a very young age. She studied at the College of Fine Arts in Zurich, Switzerland where she was educated under constructivists Max Bill and Hans Fischli in the Bauhaus tradition of Kandinsky’s school of “Form und Farbe.” Her post graduate studies and teaching took her from Switzerland to Italy, Liechtenstein, the Bahamas and California, settling down in Colorado Springs, Colorado in 1991.
While she produced landscapes in many medias, her one true love and passion has been, and still is, creating art based on the human figure, exploring a variety of media such as Conté crayon, watercolor, bronze and terracotta sculptures. Her work has been shown in galleries and museums all over Europe and the United States and she has received numerous awards. Currently, the best place to purchase Marica’s hand-built terracotta sculptures and paintings is Commonwheel Artist's Co-op in Manitou Springs, CO.
How did you get interested in art?
Already at the age of five I considered myself to be a “serious artist.” At that time I did not accept critique willingly. Through the years I learned, however, that it was less important what people thought of my art but how it affected them.
What does making art mean to you?
Art is my life. Without it I would be just a hollow shell.
Where do you get inspiration?
Inspiration can come from anywhere: a word spoken, a song, a beautiful landscape or human being I see, something I read or experience.
You are a figurative sculptor and also a painter. Which media do you enjoy the most?
I enjoy all art forms equally. I will pick the medium according to which one would illustrate best what I want to express. When I feel playful I may paint one of my colorful “Western Romance” pictures. I would paint a landscape when I marvel at the beauty surrounding me, or I may turn to sculpture to express my spiritual needs or just to revel in the grace of the human form.
Tell us about your creative process. Walk us through the steps to create one of your works.
Throughout my long life as an artist I have used many medias. In my younger years I used more conventional ones, such as oil painting for landscapes and portraits or bronze for sculpture. For several years I was enthralled by stone lithography. To this day I use Conté crayon when working with live models or ink-pen for very quick sketches on the road.
In my forties I discovered the immediacy and lightheartedness of watercolor, which lead to reverse glass painting and in turn to the liquid watercolors I now employ for my “Western Romance” pictures.
I never liked using sticky modeling clay to model the originals for my bronzes. A modeling compound called DAS came to my rescue. It adheres marvelously to metal or any other support and once dried, it can be chiseled, carved and sanded. But…that was then.
About twenty years ago and inspired by the work of Hungarian sculptor Kovacs Margit, the terracotta sculpture of the Toltecs, as well as the famous Chinese Warriors, I turned to terracotta and so far I haven’t looked back. I love the dry tactility of red sculpting clay, the challenge of sculpting the human figure without the crutch of metal supports, the mystery and anticipation of the firing as well as the fact that each piece is an original.
What is the visual effect or emotion you look for capturing in your compositions?
Visual effects are secondary to my creative process. I strive to recreate what moves me: express the love I feel for the subject; in other words, to share the wonder I feel.
Is there an artist that you admire or follow?
During my formative years I leaned heavily on the philosophies of Wassily Kandinsky, Pablo Picasso, Henry Matisse and Auguste Rodin. Now I pretty much choose my own way, my own challenges.
What is your proudest achievement?
I do count the 30 feet long by 8 feet tall “Three Sisters” steel and terracotta sculpture at the Saint Francis Medical Center as the most important piece of my life. Not only because of the sheer size of it or the fact that it may well be the only freestanding terracotta relief in existence; it means much more to me than that. The selfless love and charity of the Sisters of Saint Francis (founders of Saint Francis Hospital) and the Sisters of Charity (founders of Penrose) that it documents, opened up my eyes and heart to my own spiritual needs. It led me to the Benedictine Sisters of Benet Hill who are helping me to fill a void that I didn’t even know existed.
Marica's larger-than-life outdoor terracotta and steel relief “Three Sisters” panels are displayed at the entrance of the new Saint Francis Medical Center in Colorado Springs. To learn more about each panel, her visions and concepts, visit her blog at http://earthandfire-marica.blogspot.com/2008
What is/are your favorite(s) piece(s) for sale at Commonwheel? And why?
At Commonwheel I am primarily showing my figurative terracotta sculpture (and my Saint and Angels wall pieces). I hand-build those with outdoor-quality clay which is fired at high temperatures for maximum vitrification and durability. Each is a one-of-a-kind original piece of art. All pieces are signed and dated. As a secondary medium I also show some reverse-glass paintings. I love all my pieces. They all have stories and I hope that each will have special meaning to whoever acquires one.
What’s next for you?
The future’s not mine to see! I hope for many more years of the challenge, the exploration and the wonder of art.
Visit the shop and receive 10% off all Marica’s creations through the whole month of June.
You can find her work online also at our online shop. Follow her on Pinterest (pinterest.com/MaricaHefti) or Facebook (facebook.com/MaricaHefti). She also wrote a book available in Amazon (Marica-Hefti/e/B00JXRM5IQ)
Gallery Show featuring Sculpture and Paintings by David Caricato
Opening Reception March 18, 5-8 pm
Show runs through April 11. Regular store hours are 10 am-6 pm daily.
Article and photographs by Juanita Canzoneri
David Caricato has been making art for over 40 of his nearly 70 years. Most of that time he worked with sculptural forms in wood and other natural materials. His early work uses long gourds as a base for the pieces he calls “Earth Dancers” which include design elements from southwest First Nations tribes. He began incorporating raven masks worked in the northwest First Nations style as a humorous juxtaposition of ideas.
The raven masks, as well as other mask styles, have by now found their way into many other sculptures that don’t incorporate the “Earth Dancer” shapes.
With the most recent change in the economy he diversified to making small figural paintings in acrylics. He can sell the paintings at a lower price point since they come together quicker than his larger sculptures do. But ever the dyed-in-the-wool wood worker he hand-carves many of the frames for his paintings.
For his paintings he works with a limited number of models, over several years. Pointing to one painting he told me, “I’ve worked with her over 3 boyfriends and breakups. I think the guy she’s with now will be a keeper.” The pieces that come from these modelling sessions are collaborative. He might have an idea for where he wants to start, or the model may want to try something. The sessions are photographed and then both he and the model look at the photos and make changes.
With his paintings, which are typically no more than 6”-8” tall, his studio is the kitchen island or in his living room. He had a studio in an outbuilding on his property that’s more conducive to his sculptural work, with a tool bench and dust catchment system he works year round. Pulling out a piece he’s working on he explained some of the woods he worked with created dust that was quite dangerous to inhale.
David’s goal with his art is to push buttons and find where the boundaries are. He is making the type of art that he wants and is a self-diagnosed wood hoarder. His figural art deals with the human form, including many nudes. Getting the musculature correct is highly important to him, even with his smallest canvases. This gives his paintings and sculptures a realistic quality. But the humor in his art lends a charm and warmth to that realism. And there are times when David expresses his political views in a very tongue-in-cheek way with his work.
David is a Pueblo native with two undergraduate degrees, one in Graphic Design and one in Industrial Arts/Woodworking. He has been showing galleries throughout the Southwest, Washington state, Florida, and New York. He recently had a one-man show of the same name at the Sangre de Christo Art Center and has received numerous awards, including Best in Show and First Place in Sculpture at the Colorado State Fair Art Show.