Posts from the ‘news’ category

2017 solo show at Sierra Arts Gallery

Lisa Kurt

My latest solo show, Somewhere in the desert there’s a forest, is now showing at the Sierra Arts Gallery and is up until January 27th. There is an artist’s reception on Thursday January 19th at 6pm that is free and open to the public. This is one of my largest shows to date and includes new paintings, installation elements, and a large scale mural. I’m really proud and excited by how this show came together and even more thrilled to share it with everyone. Sierra Arts has been wonderful to work with and extremely supportive every step of the process. For more information and gallery hours, please visit their website here: http://sierra-arts.org/

My dear friend Elspeth Summers is going to be playing at the reception as well. She recently released a new album as well as a special video and song in support of Standing Rock. You can view her work here on her website: http://www.elspethsummers.com/music 

For a bit more information on this show, below is my artist’s statement and I hope to see you at the reception!

This exhibit is a series of paintings by Lisa Kurt, in which the artist has crafted miniature narratives of human fascination with nature, particularly animals, and animal-like creatures. Lisa continues to develop her own world that expresses the fragility, vulnerability, and personality of life. Inspired by the New England woods of her childhood, the wooded and damp world of North California and the Pacific Northwest, and her home in the high desert mountains of Nevada, she integrates elements of these landscapes into her works in various ways. Tumbleweeds in particular have become a new obsession; both novel and commonplace, these objects have become characters and hold a certain magic for the artist to explore. There is a focus within her work on the relationships and/or emotions of the characters within this world. Many of the characters within this work are an allegory; they often represent a secondary meaning such as a childhood memory, a story, an emotion, or a dream.

Lisa Kurt works primarily with acrylics and mixed media on canvas or wood panels; her work integrates maps and other ephemera within her paintings. She has also explored and experimented with gouache, watercolor, and acrylic inks.

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book release: Sarla in the Sky

lisa kurt's illustrated book sarla in the sky

Sarla in the Sky has arrived! The first published children’s picture book I’ve illustrated in my hands. I’m shaking a little bit. Indulge me for a moment while I share something personal….When I was little I used to make little paper and cardboard books- binding and all. I made art books and poetry books & a cardboard version of Penny’s book from Inspector Gadget. I made lots of art and had met picture book artists and wanted to be just like them. I dreamed of making books and art when I was tiny and held onto that dream for a long time. There was a point in my life where I began to let go of it- I heard myself say, “it wasn’t meant for me”, “I’m not good enough”, and “it wasn’t meant to be” I chose other paths and yet….here I am in this moment. In this moment holding my book!! I have dreamed about this moment for as long as I can remember- holding a book I made with a story I really believed in from an author I believed in. I’m so proud and so grateful. Anjali Joshi is a wonderful author and storyteller; I feel so honored that she and the Bharat Babies team believed in my work and art and chose me to bring the visual part of Sarla’s story to life. I am so thankful for this team!

And thank you to everyone who helped me along the way- there are so many of you out there! I’m so grateful for all of the people who have supported me, went to my art shows, sold work on my behalf, bought paintings, bought prints or products, picked me up when I was low, encouraged me when things weren’t certain, cheered me on when things went right, and in general were good to me when I needed it. It’s real! It’s here! Yay!!

You can order a copy of Sarla here: https://bharatbabies.com/products/sarla-in-the-sky?variant=16819772097 and there are still limited editions prints of Sarla available as well (only 50 total- all signed and numbered so get one while you can and support Bharat Babies so they can make more of these beautiful books!)

I know this will be the first of many books I illustrate and eventually I want to both illustrate and write a published book so stay tuned….there is more to come!

xo!

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a little love letter to Reno

photo 3 copy

Where to begin…this spring has flown by and June is moving in the same manner it seems. The opening for my solo show, A Tender Spark, was a success- more than I ever imagined it would be. It really was a dream to see so many people come out to support me and my art. Before I get into the details of the work, the show, and the opening, I’m very pleased to announce that the show has been extended until Wednesday July 1st 2015 so there is still time to see it all in person if you haven’t already. The Holland Project gallery hours are Tuesday through Friday 3-6pm or you can give them a call to make an appointment outside of those hours by contacting Alisha alisha@hollandreno.org

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I admit that this show is/was a really big deal for me both professionally and personally. I’ve never had a solo show this large before and it was truly years in the making of it. I stopped painting and illustrating for about 10 years so if you told me back in 2002 that I would be living in Reno, NV as a working artist with my own solo show- I would never have believed you! Back then my art studio was my kitchen and it was really small….really really really small. To make a very long and complicated story short, my life was kind of a mess back then and because of lack of support and frustration I quit painting. I’ll have to elaborate on all that one day but trust me when I say- this show, this moment, this group of work that I made is a big deal for me.

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This spring was also an unexpected challenge for myself and my family. It absolutely impacted my work in many ways and my heart was just broken on repeat. I listened to Sufjan Steven’s newest album Carrie & Lowell obsessively- maybe because I was dealing with death and loss, it was sort of comforting to paint to it and just lose myself in the work.

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When the show opened on June 11th and so many people came out to see what I painted- I can’t even describe how surreal and amazing that felt. Reno is a pretty great place to be an artist and I felt incredible support from so many people. I’m not saying our art scene is perfect or couldn’t improve in some ways, but I love that in general, most people want to see others thrive here and the community feels genuine. There are so many extraordinary artists here and it’s growing really fast. There is a lot of work being done on several levels to make Reno a vibrant and thriving art city- everyone seems to be “pulling on the same rope” as my friend Tod would say.

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I was overwhelmed by all of it and I had to give a talk which I was more nervous about that than anything else I’ve given a public talk about because this was so much more meaningful and personal to me. Even more intimidating than the time I gave a talk to hundreds of computer programers about graphic design. Here I’ve spent so. many. isolated. hours. painting. struggling. painting. painting. drawing. painting. And suddenly my paintings are on the walls and people are excited to see them in person and talk to me- it’s crazy and awesome. I always feel a little socially awkward after working so long in the studio but I was so overwhelmed and incredibly happy!

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Setting up the show was an amazing experience and I could not have done it all without the incredible Alisha Funkhouser- she made the whole process go smoothly and was so encouraging and supportive right from the beginning. Thanks to Patrick, Denali, and Meghan for the hanging help too- it was a lot of work that went fast with all of you. Thanks to Archer for helping me with some finishing touches and being such a good help to me. The Holland Project is a special place and they are essential to the Reno community; what they do here is so important and that is personal too.

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Many of my paintings are off to lovely new homes with such wonderful people. I can’t thank those of you who purchased work enough- whether it is a print or an original painting, this is what enables me to keep making new work and pay the bills so thank you. I know these words aren’t even really adequate enough to express how grateful I am to you all and how lucky I feel that I can do this.

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Tony Lillios, a friend and a collector of mine, purchased “Is that you?” above. Tony has been supporting my art for some time now and I’m always happy to see what he thinks of my new work.

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Even the mayor came to see my show and she bought the painting, buffalo + cetus for her sister, Amanda Sanchez. She let me know she might stop by and I’m so glad she did; it was very exciting to see her enjoy my work and to talk to her about Reno, art, and many other things.

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So much happened the night of my opening that I never got a photo of just me with one of my paintings so here is one Alisha took of me when I stopped by later.

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Now that things have slowed down a bit- I’ve been reflecting on the show and the work I made and thinking about what I need to make next. I have some paintings that are dying to be painted and I’m pretty much the worst at relaxing so I need to really take some time and force myself to rest before I jump onto my next thing. I’ll be participating in ArtBlast in September and I have another solo show here in Reno in October (it may be my last for a while as I have some other plans in the works) and I’ll be in a group show down in LA that month but for right now I’m just trying to enjoy this feeling. I kind of need to soak it in and maybe process what the heck happened this spring and stay in this state of bliss for a little while.

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Supporting artists comes in so many forms- whether it’s attending a show, buying a painting or a print or some other item that artist created, or sending an encouraging word and simply enjoying their work- all of it helps more than you know. All of it keeps me going and though it can be hard at times to be a working artist- the hustle and constant pushing can be exhausting- it is a very very lucky life. I know how lucky I am. Thank you everyone.

And of course, I couldn’t end this without thanking my spectacular little family- thank you to Will and to Archer. I sure could not do any of this without the both of you, your love, and encouragement. <3

ATS3

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A Tender Spark: new paintings by Lisa Kurt

Lisa Kurt solo show announcement

I’m really pleased to announce my upcoming solo show, A Tender Spark, at the Holland Project Gallery! The opening reception is June 11th at 6:30pm. I started the work for this show back in 2012 and I’ve longed to do a show at the Holland Project for years. All of the paintings have never been shown before and many are brand new – painted this year.

There is a special preview starting at 5:30pm for those who are part of the Art Patrons Program- it’s similar in nature to an art collector’s preview. There is a little write up on the Art Patrons Program here if you are curious about what it is: http://www.hollandreno.org/about/artpatrons/ And you can find out more how to become an art patron and get in early to be the first ones in to see my new paintings by contacting Alisha by email: alisha@hollandreno.org, or call Alisha or Britt at 775.742.1858.

I’ll have both prints and original paintings for sale at the opening. I have some really nice surprises as part of my show, so you won’t want to miss it- it’s been years in the making!!

artist residency at St. Mary’s Art + Retreat Center

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SMAC photo taken from their FB page

 

Next month…just a few more days away…I’ll be one of the resident artists working out of St. Mary’s art + retreat center. This will be my first residency and I am so excited. I’ve been working away to prepare and pack and next week I should be setting up and making more new work- hopefully hitting the ground running.

If you don’t know about this historical and magical place, it used to be a hospital opened in 1876, that has been since converted into an art and retreat space. It’s located in Virginia City, NV which is an interesting and quirky place to visit and explore. To read more- check out their history page.

I’ll also be part of the SMAC exhibitions opening reception on April 25th 1-4pm. I’ll be showing new work and I’m thrilled to share I’ve got a good chunk of my children’s picture book put together. I’ll be showing some finished paintings from that as well as preliminary sketches, character sketches, storyboard work, and early concepts. You’ll get to see the inside guts of what a picture book is really made of and the work involved- I hope you’ll join us for a fun day. The events at St. Mary’s are always a treat and the other artist’s showing are exceptional- I’m so lucky to be showing with them.

I will be blogging my experiences throughout the residency; I don’t know yet how often, but check here regularly starting next week to see photos, works in progress, and updates.

upcoming classes winter-spring 2015

Lisa Kurt's class at the Nevada Museum of Art

I’ve been plugging along teaching pretty regularly since the start of the new year. Thank you to those who have come out to take a class with me! I’ve really enjoyed meeting so many new people and seeing familiar faces as well.

A number of people have asked me to post my teaching schedule so here it is as it stands right now. I’m sure I’ll be adding more classes and as I do I will post the updates here on my new teaching schedule page. The classes usually run based on attendance so if you really want to take one of my classes- sign up to make sure you don’t miss out! Thank you!

February through June 2015:

[sold out] Animal Illustration (kid’s class) Wednesdays, February 25 – March 18 / 3:30 – 5:30 pm [NMA*]

Creating Image Transfers Tuesday, March 10 / 6 – 9pm sign up here [NMA*]

Children’s Book Illustration March 27 through March 29th 10am- 4pm each day sign up here [SMAC*]

Creating Image Transfers Thursday, May 14 / 6 – 9pm  sign up here [NMA*]

Creating a Personal Sketchbook, June 25 / 5:30 – 8:30pm sign up here [Atelier*]

 

*NMA: Nevada Museum of Art, Reno, NV

*SMAC: Saint Mary’s Art Center, Virginia City, NV

*Atelier in Truckee, CA

 

#lisadraws2015

fox drawing in sketchbook

I’ve been mulling over a number of projects for this upcoming year and one of the hardest parts for me is to commit to the most personal projects or doing things purely for myself. I have a lot planned this year including writing and illustrating a children’s book, 4 solo shows, an artist residency, and numerous teaching gigs. Just writing that out makes me gulp a little bit and my heart beats a little faster with anticipation, excitement, and some fear. Many of these projects are well under way and I’m building out my schedule which makes me feel a bit more at ease but still…I have a ton of work to do!

Anyway- it’s often my most personal projects that suffer when it comes down to it. I’ve wanted to create a repeatable project for ages and I’ve started some and stopped some and I never really committed to them like they deserve. This year will be different! Because of all the projects I have and my busy schedule- I need to draw a lot. When I paint a lot I tend to drop down on drawing and I can’t let that happen this year- drawing is my comfort and it’s where my new ideas come from- I cannot live without it. So I got a couple new sketchbooks, I have some pretty papers, lots of drawing materials and too many ideas to count. If you want to follow along on this 365 journey, please follow me on Instagram at lisakurt. I am so ready to do this!

xo,

Lisa

bon voyage 2014 and welcome 2015!

lisa kurt sketch of raccoon

Here we are at the end of 2014 and beginning of 2015. I absolutely love this time of year- the opportunity to reflect on the past year and take stock of the things I did well and the things I didn’t do so well on. I made a lot of mistakes in 2014 but I also had a lot of successes, I learned so so much, and honestly? I’m pretty proud of my very first year as a full time artist. It was not without some challenges and I’m still figuring things out of course but I have some really big ideas and plans already for the next year. It’s a chance to begin again. I have so much to be thankful for and many many people who without them I simply would not be able to do this. It’s likely that if you’re reading this- you are one of those people. Thank you!! Thank you so so much for everything!

I think what tickles me the most about this year is planning, hoping, and dreaming about what the next year will hold. Resolutions may not quite be the right word to describe how I plan around this time of year- it’s more a mixture of goal and intention setting. I do write all my ideas out in various forms and I brainstorm- it’s a process to figure out what I really really want to do. Some things are already committed to due to some hard work I put in last year and they are lined up in the calendar; others are up to me to keep pushing to make happen and complete. I have to make some hard decisions and put some ideas aside to leave a little bit of room for some serendipity too. It may seem laborious but by doing this- it truly keeps me focused on what I want to achieve. It also helps me say no to projects that may not fit in with my ultimate goals and dreams; sometimes it breaks my heart to say no because there are so many amazing projects out there! Sometimes it’s a matter of scheduling or timing and though a project might be right up my alley and exactly what I love- I may just have too many commitments. Either way- this process of clarifying makes it much easier for me to really know: what do I want to create this year?

So here I am with warm fuzzy emotions about the past year and butterflies and joy looking forward to the next. It’s a lovely and exciting place to be. Do you set goals or intentions for the new year? Do you make plans for what you want your year to look like?

I hope you all create some amazing things this year. I hope you’ll make some art and do those things you’ve always wanted to do. And I wish you a little magic too. 🙂

May you all have a warm and wonderful new year!

xo!

Lisa

 

Products on Nuvango

I’m really excited to announce that I now have a live Nuvango shop! This means that there are now additional products like phone and tablet skins and cases, greeting cards, and more with my images on them.

I won’t be selling prints through Nuvango at this time- but you can still purchase prints on my etsy shop: Lisa Kurt’s etsy and there is an option for stretched canvas through Nuvango if you like. I hope you enjoy these new products and have a wonderful day!

Lisa’s Nuvango Shop

 

Lisa Kurt on Nuvango

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Reno News and Review Best Of Issue

aliens roasting marshmallows

Many people know that I had been working on a secret illustration project through June and July, though I couldn’t really share what it was I was working on. Well now I can because it hits news stands today!! I created the cover and inside illustrations for the Reno News and Review’s Annual Best Of Issue, which was so much fun and you can check it out online too. Working with the editors, Brian and Brad, was a real treat; they were excited by my ideas and easy to work with. Together we came up with the theme of Nevada mythological creatures which I couldn’t have been more excited to do! It was a pretty fast paced turn around but I’m pleased with the paintings I created and it was just the right illustration project for me at the right time. Brad also interviewed me for the project as well and it was so nice chatting with him about how much we love Reno. That is also in the Best Of issue.

I’ll also be having my first solo art show through all of September of these paintings for this project at Hub Coffee Roasters at the Riverside location. We’ll be throwing a big reception too with a few surprises so stay tuned for the date- I’ll announce it here, on Instagram, and Facebook so follow me in one of those spots to keep up to date.

Here is a little preview of a couple of the images and I’ll get them all up on the website soon, but please, if you’re in the area, pick up an issue and enjoy as soon as you can! If you can’t wait- here’re the link again.

And one last thing- a big giant thank you to all of you who have supported me and my art and illustration over this past year. August 16th marks my one year anniversary into this new adventure and so many of you have been absolutely instrumental to my success. I wouldn’t have landed here a year later with this cool project, among others, if several people hadn’t prompted me to present about art, share my work, offer me projects, offer volunteer and/or teaching opportunities, and the list goes on. I hope you know who you are- I’m so grateful for you all and to be in such a rad community in real life and online.

xo,

Lisa

aliens

Area 51 aliens

waterbabies

Pyramid Lake waterbabies

sasquatch

Verdi Sasquatch

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