Graduate and Professional Artists
Kelly R Johnston
Marie Alisa Garlock
Josalyn Sky Williams
Saba Taj (b. 1986) is a visual artist based in Durham NC. Heavily inspired by Islamic stories and speculative fiction, Saba uses interdisciplinary practices to illustrate the in-betweenness of identity, as embodied by hybridized figures. Taj remixes cultural references from her South Asian, Southern American, Muslim, and queer identities, and explores themes of diaspora, inherited trauma and apocalypse.
Meg Stein is a visual artist based in Durham, NC. Using sculpture and mixed media, Stein works to mutate the aesthetics and semiotics of femininity. She has exhibited her work at VICTORI + MO, Garis & Hahn, A.I.R. Gallery, Westbeth Gallery, Vox Populi, the Governors Island Art Fair, Greenhill Gallery, the Neon Heater, and the Spartanburg Museum of Art, among others. Stein has been an artist-in-residence at Yaddo, The Hambidge Center, Haystack, PLAYA, the Atlantic Center for the Arts, and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. She received the Garland Fellowship from the Hambidge Center, and the Ella Pratt Emerging Artist Grant. Most recently, Stein was selected as the North Carolina Fellow for South Arts. Stein also runs Dirty White Matter, a community-based project that uses group discussion + art to confront whiteness and increase accountability.
Jenny Eggleston is a mixed media artist, poet, and teacher. She started her career as a nature illustrator and diverged into surrealism. She uses organic images inspired from nature to create figurative mindscapes that are emotive, sensual, sometimes disturbing, and quirky. Jenny often titles her works with poems, moving between the expressions in a separate but co-creative act.
After working for several years exclusively in graphite, she has been exploring color. She pokes at trying to maintain equilibrium in these times of great social upheaval and anxiety.
Jenny Eggleston is the owner of Egg in Nest Art Studio, a private art studio providing instruction in drawing, painting, and art appreciation. She received her Bachelor of Arts from the College of William and Mary, and her graduate studies were at Virginia Commonwealth University. She also studied abroad through the University of Georgia.
Taji Shabu is a Liberian born visual artist, designer, and entrepreneur residing in Raleigh, North Carolina. Taji was born into a highly creative family of artists and musicians. Her mother is a musician and her father is a visual artist. She learned early on that all creative forms of art can overlap and intertwine. The youngest of six, Taji performed and traveled with her family teaching traditional African dance, drumming, storytelling, and art. She received a BFA in fine arts from Parsons School of Design, focusing on accessory design and footwear. Taji has translated her love of aesthetic, beauty, and design into natural hair care and styling. Taji is a licensed Natural Hair Care Specialist and currently owns a nationally top ranked Natural Hair Salon in Raleigh, North Carolina. Taji takes the beautiful stories of the women she touches everyday and creates multi-medium portrait art that highlights the vast dimensions of the African Woman.
Frankie Toan is an artist working mostly with craft and DIY materials and techniques to create large plush sculptures, interactive works, and installations. With an emphasis on labor and process, Frankie explores the complexities of touch, connection, and embodiment. Their work is simultaneously childish and monstrous, deviant and domestic.
Frankie holds a BFA in Craft/Material studies from Virginia Commonwealth University, with a minor in Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s studies. Originally trained as a metalsmith and metal fabricator, Frankie has recently been following their love of fiber and all things soft. Frankie has participated in many group shows and collaborations nationwide. Having previously completed several residencies including a year at Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts, they have recently concluded a two-year residency at Redline in Denver, CO. Frankie is currently based in Denver.
Kelly Johnston earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting from the University of Washington in 2000. In addition to painting, she has worked in the interior design industry and created a line of handmade jewelry. Kelly returned to painting in 2013 and has since exhibited her work at the Bloedel Reserve, West Elm, Anthropologie, and numerous other venues throughout the Pacific Northwest. She was recently featured in Luxe Interiors + Design Magazine, HGTV Magazine, and Domino Magazine. Her work can also be found in three collections of limited edition prints available on Minted.com, McGaw Graphics and through Sebastian Foster.
Kelly lives on Bainbridge Island, Washington with her husband and two children. Most days she can be found working in her studio/gallery space in downtown Winslow – please stop by and say hello!
Claire Alexandre is also an environmental artist and always includes local flora and fauna in her work as a way to give homage to her natural surroundings and also to prioritizes the disclosure of natural knowledge as a way of healing, growth and community building. Featured in Broken cycle and Pop is the Artemisia vulgaris and the yarrow flowers that have been traditionally used as relievers for period pains throughout Europe. The branches in Broken Cycle are those of the Ceibo tree, commonly known as the World Tree by certain indigenous communities in Ecuador due to its huge size and is also said to have protective powers. The Kalbreyeriana’s leaves, featured in Pop, are said to be used by certain Afro-Colombian communities to invoke the “madre de agua” an avenging spirit of water that will throw evil spirits into the water to drown them.
Sonia Ruiz is a senior at Yale University majoring in Psychology. As an undergraduate researcher in behavioral neuroscience at Yale Medical School, she is particularly drawn to the common observational aspect in science and art. She is especially grateful to her art professors for teaching her the importance of grounding her work in study and historical context. A former illustrations editor for the Yale Daily News, Sonia is also thankful for the opportunities campus publications have provided for non-art majors. Her work has been republished in the New York Times, purchased for publication in a children’s textbook, commissioned by St. Thomas More Chapel, and sold by Merwin’s Art Shop. When she is not in class or in lab, Sonia likes playing flute, foodstagramming, and hiking. Sonia is super excited to be part of this exhibition, as she believes storytelling is one of the most powerful forms of communication, and knowledge one of the most important avenues to empowerment.
Andrea Kim studied new media and documentary film at Duke. She is interested in theories of embodiment and the mediation of space. Throughout the years, she has produced videos ranging from a historical documentary about public monuments to an experimental one about the process of creativity itself. She sees documentary as an opportunity to talk to people from diverse backgrounds, collaborate with peers, and develop her own voice through the production process. In the next few months, she will be working with the lab to produce an extended cut of “The (In)visible Organ.”
Amanda Graciela Torres Rodríguez was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico. From the context of crisis and coloniality, he mainly works with graphics in media such as drypoint and monotype, thus continuing with the long tradition of counter-cultural graphic production in Puerto Rico. He studied under the tutelage of Martín García and Néstor Millán at the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus, where he obtained a bachelor’s degree in humanities with a concentration in painting. His approach seeks to problematize both the psychoanalytic views of subjectivity and the ubiquitous and urgent class struggle. He has been part of exhibitions in different towns of Puerto Rico. His artistic work is part of private and public collections such as Oscar Mestey Villamil, Claudia M. Torres Guillemard, Alexander Quiles, Carmen Maldonado Vlaar, as well as the collection of the arts of the José M. Lázaro library of the Río Piedras Campus and also his Collection of the Museum of History Anthropology and Art. He complements his artistic production with video, installations, and painting.
Josalyn Sky Williams Is a freshman at Cleveland high school who enjoys using acrylics and watercolors to paint landscapes. She would like to thank Anita Locker her middle school and now high school art teacher for really encouraging her to continue doing art and to try new techniques she had never done before. She wants to go to North Carolina state university to study chemical engineering, sustainable energy, and environmental engineering. She is a proud member of the FFA and hopes to be an officer next year.
Jamie Letourneau is an Oregon based artist fascinated by the concept of home. She illustrates the homes we live in and the homes we carry; to convey the fragile shelters of our most intimate worlds through intricate line work. As she channels emotions into ink, she finds fuel for the therapeutic process of illustrating ailments of both herself and of others.
Now in her largest work, Jamie exposes viewers to a tangled progression of naivety, shame, and healing as she pushes boundaries of vulnerability and invite others to explore and embrace their own.
In all of her work she seeks to connect people to each other and for people to reconnect with themselves through their darkness and light.
Afro Child is a Ghanaian born, New York based artist creating paintings that translate the voices in her head into perceivable psyches. Born and raised in Ghana, her intricate culture has always been imperative to who she is and this is evident in her use of abstracted Ghanaian symbolism. With acrylic and a contemporary approach, she renders her past mental health issues and the changing scenes of life into visual capsules. Afro Child’s work forces the viewer to look within their souls and be illogically intuitive. Her imagery stems from reflections of her unconscious mind creating a mystery that can only be uncovered at the convergence of the mind
Shin-Yiing Yeung is a self-taught, multi-media artist. Her ceramic and wire sculptures have exhibited at Form + Function Gallery (Raleigh, NC). She has made commissioned pieces for businesses and individuals. Conceptual themes in her work include music, time, space, and movement. She uses art as a way to help people discover the wonders of the human body and to explore/move towards healing pain, injuries, and life transitions. She is inspired by the art of Hilma af Klint, Yoko Ono, and Keith Haring. After a 20 year hiatus away from art, she is excited to be part of the (In)visible Organ exhibit. The inspirations for her pop-up book “Reclaim space: seen and unseen” come from her own healing journey and her role as a full-time pelvic health physical therapist.
Opeyemi Owa is the third of five children, born and raised in Lagos, Nigeria. She is a recent graduate of St. George’s University, School of Medicine, Grenada.
Most of her art focuses on the many ways the human face can be represented and invites people to reimagine their idea of beauty.
Her world view is shaped by her Faith and its influence is evident in her works.
Mediums used frequently include Acrylic paint, granite pencils, and ballpoint pens.
She is passionate about art, Nigeria, the marginalized, public health and evangelism.
Kelly R Johnston was born in Washington DC in 1991 and she graduated from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas in 2015 with a BA in Anthropology and a BA in Studio Art. She currently lives in Chapel Hill, NC and exhibits internationally and extensively in the US south. Notably, Johnston received the 2018 Orange County Arts Commision Grant, opened a solo exhibition at the Durham Art Guild SunTrust Gallery and participated in residencies at the Vermont Studio Center and the Torpedo Factory Art Center. Not Random Art, the contemporary art magazine based in London published an interview with Johnston in late 2017. This spring, Johnston will participate in the Emerging Regional Artist Residency at Artspace in Raleigh, NC. Johnston’s work explores women’s labor at the intersection of production and materiality. She examines these tensions by utilizing natural materials and identity objects (hair, teeth or other personal effects), incorporating mixed-media processes to create visceral sculptures and installations.
Kelsey Graywill is a recent graduate of Duke University and holds a self-designed BA in Evolutionary Neuroaesthetics, a degree dedicated to examining the science of why and how humans create art. Graywill is a pianist, photographer, thespian, comic writer, and, primarily, a painter. She had 6 solo exhibitions during her time as an undergraduate, and has a namesake award at Duke called the Graywill Award for Arts Leadership & Service, endowed by the university for $1000 annually. In her visual art, she explores how form and color can be used to show the progression of disease, immersion in environments, and as a tool to promote literacy, all of which drew her to the Calla Campaign. She will be an artist-in-residence at the Rubenstein Arts Center this May for her own project where she creates 3D printed topographical models of her landscape paintings. You can read more about her here or her work here.
Marie Alisa Garlock is a performing artist in story, dance/movement, poetic and visual landscapes. She is a PhD candidate at UNC at Chapel Hill, where she teaches and researches collaboratively in Communication (Health Communication, Performance for Social Change) and African, African-American, and Diaspora Studies. As a certified InterPlay methods and Interactive Theater leader, she works with higher education partners on issues of physical and mental health, assault and harassment, and dismantling the explicit inequities that arise from implicit bias.
Marie is grateful to partner with communities in the US south and global south to design health communication and arts-based participatory research initiatives that center the narratives and priorities of persons facing stigmatized health challenges. itisinyou.org
Adair Jones is a senior at Duke studying Art History and Visual Arts. During her time in school, she has developed as a graphic designer, printmaker, and sculptor. She is currently pursuing a thesis in the visual arts focused on interactive exhibitions and material histories.
Diane Lee is a sophomore at Duke University majoring in Neuroscience and Mathematics. Born and raised in Korea, she appreciates the interdisciplinary nature of academics in the US and takes advantage of it by being active in various organizations and projects, with a focus on graphic design and web development.
She also appreciates being in the safety of an undergraduate, where failures don’t count as failures. This security manifests in her art as she employs Art as a tool of expressing a greater message that could easily lose its meaning in words. Her work has been a part of World Exhibition at the Chiyoda Art Center, Colors of Humanity International Art Show, DonkeyArt International Contemporary Art Competition in Milano, Photographer’s Forum, etc.
In The Calla Campaign, she is a part of the exhibition’s curation, marketing and this website.