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Past Artists in Residence & Contributions
Melanie A. Feerst
Contribution: Community stepping stones.
Artist's Statement: Finding inspiration in contemporary medical culture, bioethics literature and medical history, the artist exploits diverse and contrary psychological systems within the socially constructed medical identities of “patient” and “physician”. Issues of communication, dignity, trust and concealment are examined and dissected, often while articulating a personal narrative.Found medical detritus and cast internal body parts offer the viewer poignant associations to universal fears of illness and suffering. While outwardly humorous, the constructions have a decidedly dark undercurrent.
During my 20’s, I spent years working for cardiologists and cardiovascular surgeons at two major teaching hospitals in Chicago, where I became fascinated with cultural responses to the diseased body. I married a physician, had a son, and started attending classes at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where I received a BFA after 10 years of mostly part time attendance. After graduate school at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, I divorced and began working at SAIC as an administrator, then the Evanston Art Center as Director of Education. I currently am an Administrative Director for a studio program at SAIC and live in Chicago with my yellow Labrador Pluto. My son Daniel has his own apartment and is working on his career as a musician, having attended NYU and Columbia College.
Contribution: Songwriting Workshops and Community Performance.
Artist's Statement: At Kalani we arrive as separate individuals, but over the course of our stay we are born into a new, warm, inspired family. A Mecca of positive energies, I remain in awe of the emotional, physical, and spiritual environment at Kalani, which I shared with a group of remarkable people. People focused on each other and on creating and maintaining a beautiful environment. I am endlessly appreciative of the time I was able to spend with my fellow volunteers and residents and for their willingness to be and share their truest selves. These vulnerable, genuine truths led to the creation of some amazing songs and lyrics. Thank you for sharing this with me.
Dawnya Clarine has been a singer her whole life. She has been a full-time singer/songwriter since 2005. She writes songs that make you feel good. Her sultry vocals are sung with such openness, such vulnerability, you feel like you know her soul when you hear her sing. Dawnya offered her 8 session workshop called Reengage Your Creativity and Intuition through Songwriting.
Community Performance was recorded and audio tracks from our magical night are available in Dawnya's Recommendation pdf which has active links.
Contribution: A community mural project for our dining lanai.
Artist's Statement: “Personal Journey is the foundation of my work. My paintings are visual journal entries in my painted ‘Pages in Time’. They reflect personal insights, mysteries and adventures that are abundant each moment we choose to be conscious and aware, present in the moment. They are my “innerscapes”, abstract, mystical expressions that address gender, consciousness, relationships, place and time. Life is a grand mystery to which I pay homage.
We are living in abstract times. The past few years, I have delved into a new color palette of teals, tangerines and aquas. The shapes feel like matter adrift in oceans or skies. ‘Portals, Passages and Matter Adrift’ speak from the spiritual dimension I find vision and solace in. I paint this mystical abstract journey in oils, acrylics and mixed media. Rich multi-layered surfaces and overlapping large shapes reference the multi-dimensional layers of our lives. They are statements of hope in Spirit and higher visions for a harmonious future.”
Contribution: Rainbow Connection with Natural Objects (YouTube Link)
Artist's Statement: "I can be pretty shy, and learned that I feel most earnest and outgoing in music. More than anything, I want to be honest in music; it respects intelligence."
Performer and YouTube sensation Jane Lui led a creative workshop during the Puna Music Festival for three mornings of exploration of sound – from the most unusual of places. Participants explored both the household and the rainforest of Puna, and collaborated to create music to remember!
Jane Lui began her solo career in 2004 and has developed a large fan base, particularly on YouTube.
With classical training in voice and piano, Jane has a solid base on which she has built her career. Her innovative use of ordinary objects as a source of sound sets her apart. She has been known to make music from items like percussion pipes, cardboard boxes, and more.
Jane produced this video with her workshop participants and our Kalani ʻohana.
Contribution: Dance Workshops, KPAF Instruction and Performances.
Artist's Statement: In 1998 Yannis Adoniou founded the critically acclaimed dance company, KUNST-STOFF with longtime collaborator Tomi Paasonen to explore the intersection of multiple art forms and aesthetics, employing dance as the central medium. With KUNST-STOFF dance company, his works have toured throughout the USA and internationally with critical acclaim. Since 2010 Adoniou, runs the performing and visual arts space KUNST-STOFF arts, located in down town San Francisco, California USA, where he teaches, curates and creates works for KUNST-STOFF dance company.
Contribution: Writing Workshops.
Artist's Statement: Join author, journalist, theatre artist, filmmaker, photographer and teacher Lauryn Axelrod for this evening of storytelling presented by Kalani's Artist-in-Residence program.
As described by Lauryn Axelrod, "Storytelling is a practice that helps us truly know ourselves and each other. By sharing our stories in a safe and supportive way, we begin to hear ourselves and others differently, and connect, grow, and evolve individually and together. This evening, we will gather to share our stories and transform them into a performance that enables us to stand in one another's shoes with greater empathy, healing, and joy."
Contribution: Dolphin Mosaic Statue at the Pool.
Artist's Statement: For the past 25 years, Michael Kruzich has made his living as a professional ballet dancer. He has performed with many dance companies including Boston Ballet, Washington Ballet and Smuin Ballet. Michael continues to dance with the San Francisco Opera Ballet. During this time, Michael has been nurturing his interests in visual arts and in particular fine-art mosaics. He is a graduate of the prestigious Mosaic Art School in Ravenna, Italy under the guidance of maestra Luciana Notturni and his work most often incorporates the techniques learned there.
Michael is a member of the Society of American Mosaic Artists and has received awards for his work in both the 2010 and 2011 annual “Mosaic Arts International” Exhibits and published in several professional literatures. His most recent exhibit was called “Heroes with Bling” ; a 12 piece series of local San Francisco Drag Artists, and was held during Pride month 2011 at Market Street Gallery in San Francisco. Michael has recently begun teaching mosaic techniques both at his studio in San Francisco and as a guest artist.
Contribution: Community Dance Classes.
Artist's Statement: Tara is a contemporary dancer and choreographer, originally from West Cork, Ireland. She began dancing at age three, and has been performing professionally around the globe for the last 25 years. She is also the co-founder and artistic director for Croi Glan: an integrated dance company in Cork that creates performance and educational opportunities for individuals with physical disabilities. Through touring performances, workshops, and regular classes, this award-winning company brings awareness to the healing benefits that dance and movement provide.
Tara first came to Kalani in 1999, and was drawn to the vibrant LGBT community which is so rare in rural areas. In January of 2012, Tara participated in Kalani’s AIR program to focus on choreographic research for a solo dance performance which she is just finishing now, and will be touring with in Spring 2013. When she applied for the Artist in Residence program, she had been running her company full time as well as building a house, which left her emotionally exhausted and needing a step back to recharge. “On the creative level, it was fantastic. It really gave me time to reflect on my own body and my own movement.”
In addition to the nourishing time she spent in the studio, Tara was delighted to connect with so many people who were present in their bodies. Over the years she has visited Kalani, she has generously offered to share her experience and skills as a teacher, for both contact improv and aerial dance, which is a thrill for students and instructors alike. Tara’s passionate commitment to her craft is inspiring, and we look forward to seeing the dreams that lie within her innovation and creativity come to life.
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