Plus Voices

Corinne Woodman Gallery I + II

May 3 – June 1, 2019

  • Artist Reception, Thursday, May 9, 5:30 – 7:30 PM
  • Conversation from CWG: Saturday, May 18, 12:00 PM

Plus Voices is an exhibition showcasing the work of four young LGBT+ artists living in the Central Willamette Valley. While each of the artists featured in this exhibition is united by their LGBT+ identities, their work is varied in medium, subject, and tone, each providing insight into the artistic practice of the community.

Plus Voices is the first show of its kind at The Arts Center, featuring an all LGBT+ lineup of artists. The Arts Center brought on Rosalie Lingo as guest curator for this exhibition, also an LGBT+ woman from the Willamette Valley.

Lingo says, “I am very excited to be curating this exhibition. The most important thing for our community to show is that we are all individuals with individual perspectives. Thank you to The Arts Center for making this show possible and hosting our community.”

About the Artists:

Erika Graves is a graduate of Oregon State University, with a BFA in Fine Arts and Psychology, specializing in printmaking. Her artwork is personal and vivacious, focusing on figurative elements to explore the subjects of mental illness, substance abuse, gender, sexuality, and feminism. A recurring element in Graves’ body of work is the presence of hair. Graves says “Hair is used as a trope of symbol of change and identity, and in my research with hair and hairstyles, I learned just how much culture, religion, and personality is tied with hair…It’s so easy to assign gender roles to anything in our society, including hair…I wanted to create a collection that could allow anyone to identify with the styles, rather than the face.” Graves work is a conversation about personal identity and experience. 

Showing as well is Doug Hatano, AKA DLH. DLH’s work explores the relationship between the artist and their artwork, as they have distanced themselves from their creations. DLH focuses on experiential and conceptual artwork, describing their identity from a unique perspective. Rather than visual art, DLH creates artwork that involves all senses, including tactile and sound art. In DLH’s bio, they state simply “DLH is silent. Their work is silent. Neither are silenced.” Their artwork in Plus Voices is something to be experienced by the viewer. Both evocative and subdued, their body of work raises questions about experience, identity, action, meditation, and the role of the artist.

Carmen McCormack will also be exhibiting at Plus Voices. She is currently a BFA student in painting at Oregon State University, and is expected to graduate this June. McCormack is a feminist oil painter, using expressive figurative work to explore the subject of women in art. About her current series, McCormack says “Re-appropriation” uses pornographic imagery produced by male photographers and videographers as the visual derivation for figurative oil paintings…What would these images look like if they were made by women? How is the male gaze different from my own, a queer woman’s? How is it similar?” McCormack uses powerful and provocative imagery to describe female sexuality, from a unique feminine perspective. Her artwork reclaims female nudity, sexuality, and eroticism present in both modern and historical contexts.

Rounding out the exhibitors of Plus Voices is Ceph Poklemba. Poklemba is currently a student at Oregon State University. Their work is varied in subject, with tones ranging from playful to political. About themselves, Poklemba explains, “Ceph brings aspects of queerness into their work against a typically gendered world, focusing on reapplying imagery from media that has historically ostracized marginalized folk, as an honorarium to those people instead.” Poklemba’s work expresses a tone of activism, touching on the many experiences of LGBT+ people within the community. Their artwork is brave, inclusive, and not without a touch of jubilance. 

In tandem with this exhibit, the Main Gallery will feature An Iris Stands Tall: A Mother’s Journey, A Daughter’s Transition, artwork by Annette Sabatar (April 23 – June 14, 2019).

The featured image is artwork by Erika Graves.