Meet the Juror:
Kim Flora, a very talented artist and is the Head of Design and Installation on the curation team at the
Bio from Cincinnati Art Galleries, LLC
"Kim Flora is a painter and collage artist based in Cincinnati, Ohio. A graduate of the Art Academy of Cincinnati, Ms. Flora received honors in both Fine Art and Art History and currently serves as Head of Design and Installation, at the Cincinnati Art Museum. Originally from Baltimore, Maryland, the industrial coastline continues to inform her work. Ms. Flora has exhibited at Wright State University, The University of Wisconsin, Phyllis Weston Gallery, PAC Gallery, Manifest Gallery as well as the Cincinnati Art Museum. She was awarded a summer studio in Munich, Germany, through the Academy of Fine Arts, Munich and received a City of Cincinnati Individual Artist Grant in 2008. Flora's work can be found in numerous private and public collections including Baltimore County Public Schools, Tente International, The Cincinnati Art Museum and Jack Casino."
As we approach one year into the pandemic, I consider the ways in which artists and organizations, like the Ohio Arts Council, have brought innovation to the field. As a working artist and museum professional, I have firsthand experience with the on-the-feet thinking institutions and artists alike, have taken to thrive in this moment. While the isolation and loss associated with pandemic life has brought great challenge and despair, it seems to me that it has fostered a great creative resilience in all of us. The work presented here showcases the unique position artists hold by fostering innovation and creativity in this moment of grief, isolation, and social and political upheaval. From photography to painting and sculpture, these works reflect our human condition and are simultaneously timeless and astutely of this moment.
While selecting these works, several recurrent subjects include the body, nature, and architecture. I was delighted by the number of representations of women with agency like those by Leigh Brooklyn and Kyla Zoe Rafert. I found comfort in the painted landscapes and attention to light, which remind me of summer breezes and ocean air. I was drawn to both the expansive and microscopic views of nature, in selecting these works. Serene vistas and rich luscious textures from nature are present, in addition to those manmade, in the photographs of Phil Adams and Josh Arnold. Images of architecture drew me in and provided me the opportunity to imagine narratives associated with these works. Several selections repeat the theme of ‘people at work’ and make me consider the state of cooperation, skilled labor, and shared goals in our community.
Narrowing down the many exceptional submissions to this presentation was a gut-wrenching task, given the skill and passion on display in every entry I reviewed. Artists from all perspectives, at different stages in their personal and professional development chose to share their work and present it here for consideration. I applaud everyone who dared to take their creative vision out of the studio and encourage each personal artistic vision. I hope this exhibition provides the viewer a rich and layered experience that encourages a path forward with openness and curiosity.