Oklahoma Artists

On this edition of our program, we learn about the 2021 Art 365 program from the nonprofit Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition (OVAC). The artists whose work appears in this very competitive year-long program were chosen by guest curator, Grace Deveney, the associate curator of Prospect.5 in New Orleans. She's our guest today, along with Alexa Goetzinger, the associate director of OVAC. The artists selected for this year's OVAC 365 exhibit are Ginnie Baer (Edmond), Crystal Z.

Our guest on StudioTulsa is Carolyn Sickles, the Executive Director of Tulsa Artist Fellowship, or TAF, which is an arts-and-community-focused project of the George Kaiser Family Foundation. The TAF recently announced that it has given 22 of its fellows an Arts Integration Award for 2020-2021, which is meant to help these artists further their involvement with (and presence within) the Tulsa community via new works, new series, and so on. The award includes a $25,000 stipend, $10,000 in project resources, and also free living and work spaces.

ARTWORK BY FRED VILLANUEVA (via ahhatulsa.org)

Our guest is the Dallas-based artist Fred Villanueva, whose exhibition titled "The Trayectorias" (or "the trajectory," or "the path") is on view at ahha in downtown Tulsa through February 21st. This show, per the ahha website, "presents past artistic explorations that Villanueva has re-mixed to create new paintings, drawings, and installations.

On this edition of ST, we chat with artist and Living Arts of Tulsa board member Tina Henley, who is the curator for an interesting group show now on view at Living Arts called "Project Hope, Unity, and Compassion." On view through the 22nd, it is a collection of large-scale artworks which were created on plywood last summer by various artists, and which were then used to cover store-fronts, windows, and buildings in advance of the Trump rally at the BOK Center.

"The Students Five" by Blackwell, Courtesy Hiromi Katayama & Joe Goode (This photo also appeared in the OU Daily.)

On this edition of ST, we profile a novel and interesting group exhibit now on view at the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art on the OU campus in Norman; "OK/LA" is up through March 7th of 2021. As per the museum's website: "This exhibition features the work of six former Oklahomans who left the state in the late 1950s for Los Angeles: Patrick Blackwell, Joe Goode, Jerry McMillan, Ed Ruscha, Paul Ruscha, and Mason Williams. Blackwell, Goode, McMillan, and Ed Ruscha studied at the Chouinard Art Institute....

Photo by Melissa Lukenbaugh

Update:  Statement from the University of Tulsa School of Art, Design, and Art History

The gallery is open to TU Students, Faculty, and Staff Only and is Not Open to the Public.

While we are not open to the public, please join us Thursdays in September at the University of Tulsa School of Art, Design, and Art History Facebook and Instagram pages for special virtual programs and highlights.  

On this edition of ST, we learn about a multi-artist, multi-media exhibition opening soon at Living Arts of Tulsa called "Speak: Speak While You Can." The show gathers works by several outstanding Native American artists, all of the creations focused on various indigenous/tribal langauges. Our guests are the co-curators of this show, both of them noted Native artists in their own right: Tony A. Tiger (Sac & Fox/Seminole/Muscogee) and Bobby C. Martin (Muscogee/Creek).

Image courtesy Andy Arkley.

On this edition of ST, we learn about THE EXPERIENCE: IMAGINE, which is a newly created group exhibition opening today (Friday the 7th) at ahha Tulsa. It's a rather Outer Space (or Sci-Fi, or Other Worldly) type of show that, per the ahha website, features "large-scale, semi-permanent, interactive art. When you visit THE EXPERIENCE: IMAGINE, you will explore zones designed and built by one of six Tulsa-based artists. Each has different interactive elements.

The nonprofit Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition, or OVAC, which began in 1988, actively supports visual artists living and working throughout Oklahoma. On this edition of ST, we learn about a new OVAC show on view at ahha Tulsa -- it's a triennial exhibition called Concept, and it will be on display through March 22nd. Our guests are Sarah Ahmad, and artist whose work appears in this show, and Krystle Brewer, the executive director of OVAC.

Photo by Uncovering Oklahoma

Our guest on this edition of ST is the OKC-based travel and humor writer, Shelby Simpson. She's the author of a book on travel called "Good Globe," but it's her more recent book, "We're All Bad in Bed," a raunchy retelling of epic bedroom and intimacy failures, that has led to a live show which will appear in Tulsa soon. "Bad in Bed Live" is an unusual book-reading event featuring 1990s hip-hop, dancers, multi-media effects, and audience participation.

On this edition of ST, we hear about an Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition (or OVAC) program that supports young professionals interested in a career as a curator, an art critic, an arts-based journalist, or the like. Through its Oklahoma Art Writing & Curatorial Fellowsship, OVAC has helped several individuals hone their writing and/or curatorial skills, which has culminated in a special "Curatorial Lab" series of exhibits happening at the Henry Zarrow Center for Art & Education in downtown Tulsa.

Many of us living here in Oklahoma -- and indeed, living all over the nation -- are today both pleased and proud to affirm that Joy Harjo, the much-celebrated, 68-year-old writer and musician based in Tulsa, was recently named by the Library of Congress as the 23rd Poet Laureate of the United States. A member of the Muscogee Creek Nation, Harjo is the first Native person to be selected for this honorable role. On this edition of StudioTulsa, we listen back to a conversation that we aired with Harjo in 2012, when her well-regarded memoir, "Crazy Brave," had just appeared.

Our guest is Teresa Miller, the local author and Director Emerita of the Center for Poets and Writers at OSU. Miller is also the co-editor of a new anthology, which she tells us about: "Love Can Be: A Literary Collection about Our Animals." It's a gathering of about thirty acclaimed authors, all of them celebrating pets, animals, creatures, and other forms of life: cats, birds, frogs, butterflies, bears, dogs, raccoons, horses, etc.

On this edition of StudioTulsa, we get to know Ricco Wright, who owns and operates the nonprofit Black Wall Street Gallery, a recently created art space on Greenwood Avenue. After Wright graduated from Union High School, he studied mathematics as a Bill Gates Scholar at Langston University. Thereafter he earned a doctorate in math at Columbia University, after which he lived and worked in New York City for a decade. As Wright tells us, his own passion for the arts -- visual, musical, verbal, and otherwise -- flourished considerably while he was based in NYC.

On this edition of our show, we chat with Emily Zilber. A former curator at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and currently the editor of Metalsmith magazine, Zilber is now in Tulsa to serve as the curator for VisionMakers 2018 at 108 Contemporary. This show, which is the gallery's juried biennial exhibition, features the work of contemporary craft-based artists from a multi-state region, all of whom combine cutting-edge concepts with traditional skills in order to push the boundaries of art, craft, and design.

Photo by Ivan Caro

On this installment of ST, we offer a far-reaching discussion with the recently named Director of the Tulsa Artist Fellowship, Carolyn Sickles. She's worked as an artist, independent curator, educator, and arts administrator in her career thus far, and prior to arriving in Tulsa (earlier this summer) she was the Director of Visual Arts and Engagement at Abrons Arts Center on New York City's Lower East Side.

On this encore edition of ST, we hear from the Oklahoma-based writer and writing teacher Brandon Hobson, whose latest novel is "Where the Dead Sit Talking." Set in rural Oklahoma during the late 1980s, it's a lyrical and at times troubling story about a fifteen-year-old Cherokee boy who's been placed in foster care. As was noted of this book in a starred Publishers Weekly review: "Hobson's narrative control is stunning.... Far more than a mere coming-of-age story, this is a remarkable and moving novel."

The Arts and Humanities Council of Tulsa will now be known as AHHA Tulsa. As per the AHHA website: "The organization's Board of Directors voted recently to change the name to something modern that encompasses the organization's mission to cultivate creativity in Tulsa, while also honoring its decades-long history.

Our guest is the writer and writing teacher Brandon Hobson, whose new novel, "Where the Dead Sit Talking," has just been published. Set in rural Oklahoma during the late 1980s, it's a spare, lyrical, and at times troubling story about a fifteen-year-old Cherokee boy who's been placed in foster care. As was noted of this book in a starred Publishers Weekly review: "Hobson's narrative control is stunning....

On this edition of StudioTulsa, we learn about "NEW/NOW: Works by the Tulsa Artist Fellowship," the first-ever museum exhibit dedicated to artworks by fellows in the Tulsa Artist Fellowship program. This show, on view at the Philbrook Downtown space through March 3rd, presents various media and styles in newly created pieces by 20+ artists working here in the Tulsa community.

On this edition of ST, we chat with Jimmy Webb, who grew up in rural Oklahoma before going out to Hollywood, while still a teen, to break into the songwriting biz...and who eventually created such classic pop tunes as "Wichita Lineman," "By The Time I Get To Phoenix," "Up, Up and Away," and "MacArthur Park." Webb will soon perform (on the 14th) with the Bartlesville Symphony, singing and playing his wonderful songs while also telling plenty of stories. He shares a few of those stories with us today -- many of which also appear in his recent memoir, "The Cake and the Rain."

On this episode of ST, we welcome Jared Johnson to the show. He's an active drummer on the Tulsa-area music scene as well as a drumset instructor at Northeastern State University. Jared gigs widely on the local scene, playing in all sorts of bands and musical settings, and mainly works as a jazz drummer.

On this edition of StudioTulsa, we speak once again with Scott Stulen, the President and Director of the Philbrook Museum of Art. At a press conference earlier today, Stulen announced a number of exciting changes in store for Philbrook, which will take effect very soon.

The "Oh, Tulsa!" Biennial -- a "best of" group show that aims to gather and present many outstanding works by Tulsa-based visual artists -- opened recently at the Living Arts Gallery in Tulsa's Brady Arts District. Our guest on ST is the guest curator for this show, Dr. Kirsten Olds, who is an Associate Professor of Art History at the University of Tulsa. "Oh, Tulsa!" will be on view through August 25th, and you can learn more about it at this link.

On this edition of ST, we welcome the award-winning Oklahoma writer Rilla Askew back to our show. Her new book, just out, is her first-ever nonfiction volume; it's a collection of nine linked essays entitled "Most American: Notes from a Wounded Place." In this timely and reflective work, she argues that the State of Oklahoma -- whether we are talking about police violence, gun culture, race relations, secret history, religious fervor, spellbinding landscapes, or brutal weather -- is actually a "microcosm" of the United States.

Our guest is Todd Cunningham, the Executive Director of Arts Alliance Tulsa, which is, per its website, "a United Arts Fund that strengthens and supports the arts for a greater Tulsa through fundraising, support services, audience development, and responsible investment and allocation of resources." Comprised of dozens of outstanding nonprofit arts groups from throughout the Tulsa area, Arts Alliance Tulsa has only been around for a couple of years now -- but its very presence highlights the important role that the arts play in our community'

Our guest is the celebrated photographer David Halpern, who was based for many years here in Tulsa and now resides in Santa Fe. A wonderful exhibition of his work -- "The Essence of Place: Celebrating the Photography of David Halpern" -- will be on view at the Gilcrease Museum through the end of this year.

Last month, it was announced that the long-awaited Oklahoma Museum of Popular Culture -- or OKPOP, as it's also called -- will be built and housed at 422 N. Main Street in downtown Tulsa, just across the street from the historic Cain's Ballroom. As Dr.

On this installment of ST, we learn about the Tulsa-based, volunteer-run, non-profit Horton Records, which began about five years ago, and which aims to -- as noted on its website -- "provide support and tools for band management, promotion, booking, merchandising, and distribution in order to help local and regional musicians fulfill their artistic goals and further promote local and regional music on a broader scale.

On this edition of StudioTulsa, we learn about "Native Fashion Now," a traveling exhibition on view at the Philbrook Museum here in Tulsa through January 8, 2017. Our guest is Christina Burke, the Curator of Native American and Non-Western Art at Philbrook, who tells us how this show thoroughly and engagingly blends cutting-edge/modern-day fashion with classic Native American iconography/imagery. And further, per the Philbrook website: "Visitors are invited to explore the rich and surprising realm of contemporary Native fashion.