Current Advisory Committee Members
Lauren Frances Adams
Lauren Frances Adams earned her BFA at UNC-Chapel Hill, and completed her MFA in 2007 at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. She was born in North Carolina on a pig farm. She currently teaches painting at MICA. She has exhibited at the North Carolina Museum of Art (NC), Nymans House National Trust (Sussex, England), Royal NoneSuch Gallery (CA), The Mattress Factory (PA), Conner Contemporary (DC), and CUE Art Foundation (NY). Recent projects include Smack Mellon in Brooklyn and Plug Projects in Kansas City. Her work about ecological disasters in America, American Catastrophe Report, was recently on view at American University in Washington, D.C. She attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, and has held residencies at the Cite in Paris, France, Joan Mitchell Center in New Orleans, and the Sacatar Foundation in Brazil. She is the recipient of the Joan Mitchell Foundation MFA Award, a 2014 Sondheim Prize finalist with an exhibition at The Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, MD, and a 2016 Pollock-Krasner Foundation Award. Her work has been reviewed in Frieze Magazine, The Baltimore Sun, Artslant, and Hyperallergic. Lauren is a founding member of Ortega y Gasset Projects, a project space launched in New York in 2013.
Joan Belmar was born in Santiago, Chile in 1970. He left Chile for Spain at the age of 24. He began painting professionally in Spain, using the Catalan name Joan for his first name John. He came to Washington, D.C. four years later in 1999, was granted permanent residency in the U.S. based on extraordinary artistic merit in 2003, and became a citizen in 2010. Joan Belmar is well known for his unique technique of 3-D painting. He combined his former painting and collage techniques with both painted and untreated Mylar/paper strips in circles and curvilinear shapes. This technique produces variations in transparency, as light and the viewer move in relation to the work. The sheer quality of these translucent materials captures and reflects light and encourages an up close viewing of the work to reveal the different layers within. He was a Mayor’s Art Award Finalist in 2007 as an outstanding emerging artist in Washington, DC. The DC Commission on the Arts & Humanities recognized him with an Artist Fellowship Program grant in 2009, and in 2011 he was awarded an Individual Artist Grant by the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County, MD. He is a two-time recipient of the Maryland Arts Council Individual Artist Grant in Visual Arts: Painting, in 2010 and 2013. Belmar’s work is part of many private and public collections, including the University of Maine Museum of Art’s Permanent Collection. In 2016 he won first place, from among 2240 received artworks, for best Original Work in the prestigious Osten Biennial of Drawing in Macedonia.
Judy Byron’s works on paper have received recognition from the National Endowment for the Arts, the MidAtlantic Arts Foundation and the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities. Her permanent public works hang at sites, including the Tate Turner Kuralt Building at UNC Chapel Hill, Service Employees International Union and the Urban Institute. Solo exhibitions include Artists + Communities (Angela Adams) at the National Museum of Women in the Arts and participation in group exhibitions such as Picturing Politics (Rex Weil), Art Against AIDS (Ann Philbin), and Sweet Sixteen (Mera Rubell). Byron’s work is part of the Brooklyn Museum’s Elizabeth Sackler Center Feminist Artist Base. Collections include the Corcoran Museum, the NMWA, the Library of Congress, Rutgers University, U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Columbia and Absolut Vodka. She is included in 100 DC Artists edited by Lenny Campello(Schiffer June 2011). Her work is also included in The Art of the Book: Artists’ Books from the Collection of the NMWA by Kristina Wasserman, Joanna Drucker, and Audrey Niffenegger (2011). She founded CAMP, an Artist Mentorship Program with the Corcoran Museum of Art. It was honored as a national model by the NEA and the President’s Commission on Arts and Humanities.
Zoë Charlton received her MFA degree from the University of Texas at Austin and her BFA from Florida State University in painting and drawing. Charlton has participated in residencies at the Skowhegan School of Painting and at The Creative Alliance in Baltimore, MD. Her work has been included in national and international group exhibitions including the Contemporary Art Museum (Houston, TX), the Studio Museum of Harlem (NYC, NY), the Zacheta National Gallery of Art (Warsaw, Poland), Haas and Fischer Gallery (Zurich, Switzerland), Clementine Gallery (NYC, NY) and Wendy Cooper Gallery (Chicago, IL). Her work has been reviewed in ARTnews and Art in America. Previous experiences range from being an animator for Flat Black Films in Austin, Texas to teaching positions at Missouri State University (MO) and Southwestern University (TX). She is an Associate Professor of Art at American University in Washington, DC.
Chan Chao was born in Kalemyo. He has published three photography books, “Burma: Something Went Wrong”,“Letter form PLF” and “Echo”. Chao’s Burma portraits were featured in the 2002 Whitney Biennial (New York, NY). His photographs has been exhibited at Yancey Richardson Gallery in New York, NY, G Fine Art in Washington DC and Mark Moore Gallery in Santa Monica, CA. Chao’s photographs are in the permanent collection of Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, The National Gallery of Art, Baltimore Museum of Art, The Whitney Museum of American Art, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Huston Museum of Fine Art, L. A. County Museum of Art, The Denver Art Museum, Museum of Photographic Art and LaSalle Bank Photography Collection. He has contributed to New York Times Sunday Magazine, Conde Nast Traveler, GEO Magazine, Colors Magazine and The Walrus.
Anna U. Davis
Anna U Davis was born in Lund, Sweden. She immigrated to the United States in 1998 and graduated with a BA in Painting from The University of the District of Columbia in 2002. Her work has been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions in the United States and Sweden. Davis is known for her bold, colorful, graphic mixed media work, where she explores her fascination with gender relations. She is a recipient of the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant, and multiple DC Commission on the Arts Artist Fellowships. Her work can be found in public and private collections in the United States and in Europe. Davis currently resides and works in Washington, D.C.
Elsabe Dixon is an artist/curator/educator and art practitioner working in the realm of entomology as well as ecology and social practice. She has participated in multiple large format projects. In 2009 she worked with Helen Frederick on BreakthroughArt, funded in part by the Aspen Institute; BreakthroughArt sponsored 10 Berlin Artists to tour five US cities in commemoration of the Fall of the Berlin Wall, and conducted a public dialogue about Freedom issues. After receiving a Chenven Foundation grant in 2010, Dixon participated in a Living Sculpture Project involving about 400 students. This project looked at insect life cycles and agricultural systems, culminating in a “Living” sculpture constructed with live silkworms and the silk forms they spun. In 2013, Dixon received a Lumen8 grant to construct another living sculpture in Anacostia, DC. And in the same year she was part of a team of artists working for THE FLOATING LAB COLLECTIVE to construct a project called “Book of Latent Promises” for the Ghetto Biennial, which took place in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. She currently is working on the LIVING HIVE, a multidisciplinary project involving scientists, technicians and 12 Beekeepers along the 29th Corridor who collectively built a sculpture in collaboration with bees. This project was made possible from a Provost Grant through George Mason University. Elsabé maintains a studio both in Alexandria Virginia and in Chatham Virginia. She is currently the Vice President of the Washington Sculptors Group.
Jarvis Dubois has over 14 years combined registrarial and curatorial experience, currently at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History since 2002 as a Museum Specialist. While a student at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) he completed the Getty Center Summer Grant Program working at the UCLA Armand Hammer Museum in Westwood, CA. Jarvis worked with noted Los Angeles based artist, Artis Lane, as her studio assistant upon leaving the California African American Museum in Los Angeles as Assistant Registrar in 2000. In addition to this, Jarvis has independently curated and consulted on many fine art exhibitions including: The Amistad Center for Art and Culture’s Double Exposure: African Americans Before and Behind the Camera five-city traveling exhibition (2007-2010); Black Abstraction at Harmony Hall Regional Art Gallery in Fort Washington, MD for the group Black Artists of DC (2011); GA Gardner: Interconnections at the Athenaeum in Virginia (2012); (in)Visible and (dis)Embodied: Repositioning the Marginalized as part of the Curatorial Initiative program at the District of Columbia Arts Center (2014) all in Washington, DC; and most recently, Of Present Bodies at the Arlington Arts Center, VA (2014). Jarvis has also curated exhibitions for performance artist Sheldon Scott at the (e)merge art fair in Washington, DC in October of 2013 and 2014. He has written articles for the International Review of African American Art and currently working on artist and exhibition profiles for the culture blog, UrbanPop, based in New York City.
Throughout her career, Cianne Fragione has a deep and irresistible instinct, which impels her to combine materials and content in unexpected ways and achieves full and sustained realization in art that embodies the most intimate kinds of encounters between nature and culture. It is always involved with the mysteries of human experience and identity, history/time, and where viewed through the lenses of her own cultural history and important memories, and a deeply ingrained sensitivity to physical movement that she carry with her from an early professional career in dance. She is drawn to a feeling for the human figure as it moves though space, site, and environment. What she has carried into in her art-making process is a deep feeling for showing figural movement through a combination of mark-making, gestures, color, the inner illumination of the paintings, a larger feeling for landscape and its spaces. The canvas or sheet is the stage, the space in which movement brings forth impressions of remembered landscapes, gardens, the horizon, sky, and the city, both ancient and modern. Cianne was an Artist-in-Residence at DVI State Prison in Tracy, CA from 1980-1983 with a project co-funded by the California Arts Council, Sacramento and Williams James Association, Santa Cruz, CA. In 2005 she was an fellow thru Spoleto Study Aboard in Spoleto, Italy, and an Artist-in-Residence in Soaring Gardens, Laceyville, PA, a project of the Ora Lerman Trust, New York, NY in 2010 and in 2012, a two-month artist residency at Lo Studio dei Nipoti in Monasterace, Italy, a small Calabrian coastal town. Her art has appeared in numerous solo and group exhibitions (including traveling exhibitions) throughout the United States: California; New York; Chicago, IL; Cincinnati, OH; Baltimore, MD; Washington DC; Boston; Louisville, KY; and Virginia, among others. Internationally, galleries and museum in Italy, and in the American embassies in Sofia, Bulgaria, and Vilnius, Lithuania, State Department’s Art in Embassies program.
Pat Goslee has maintained an active studio practice in Washington D.C., producing work that has been acquired by numerous public and private collections, including the U.S. Embassies in Nepal and Ethiopia and the City Hall Art Collection at the John A. Wilson Building. She has exhibited widely, showing at commercial venues, universities, alternative art spaces and art fairs from Miami to New York City. Goslee is a 2009 recipient of a Visual Artist Fellowship from the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities. Her video work is featured in the art textbook Art 101: Understanding Visual Images in Our World, and her paintings are included in the publications 100 Artists of Washington, DC and 100 Artists of the Mid-Atlantic. She has served on the board of directors for the Washington Arts Museum and DCAC. She holds an MFA from Catholic University and a BFA from the University of Georgia.
Barbara Liotta is a sculptor working primarily in suspended shattered stone. She has shown extensively in the Washington area and over seas. Her work has been exhibited by the Phillips Collection, the Katzen Museum at American University, the Art Museum of the Americas, the World Bank, the Cafritz Center for the Arts to name several. The US Department of State has taken her work to Pristina, Athens, Tirana, Sophia, and Addis Ababa. She represented in several major collections.
Deirdre Ehlen MacWilliams
Deirdre serves as public art project manager for Arlington’s nationally-renowned Public Art program where she develops and manages County-initiated projects and advises on various public art and design enhancement requests. Prior to joining Arlington County, Deirdre worked as the public art coordinator for the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities (DCCAH) and for Weitzman Studios in Brentwood, MD. Deirdre also works independently on creative projects and initiatives. She was the producer for DCCAH’s temporary public art program 5×5 (2014), the curator for the Foggy Bottom Sculpture Biennial, and curator for Washington Project for the Art’s Art Night. She also directs Mid City Artists, a group of professional artists who have come together for the purpose of promoting their art and the mid city section of DC. In 2012, Deirdre served as curator for the Downtown BID’s Art All Night Festival and organizer for DCCAH’s inaugural 5×5 program. Deirdre holds a BA in Art History from The George Washington University and an MA from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, where she concentrated on contemporary art market trends. She is a member of Art Table’s Washington, DC chapter and serves on the board of directors for Capitol Hill Arts Workshop and Washington Project for the Arts.
Cory Oberndorfer is an artist fixated on nostalgia, American popular culture, and the joy of life’s simple pleasures. His work has been exhibited nationally, including Grand Central Art Center in Santa Ana, CA, Redux Contemporary Art Center in Charleston, SC, Flashpoint Gallery and G Fine Art in Washington, D.C. He has received multiple Artist Fellowships and project grants from the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities and currently teaches as an adjunct instructor at George Washington University and Montgomery College, Takoma Park. Oberndorfer received his BFA from Weber State University and MFA from American University.
John Paradiso earned a BFA at the State University of New York (Purchase) and his MFA at the State University of New York (Buffalo). He is a mixed media artist and describes his work as metaphorical and based upon such issues as identity, sexuality, health, and love. He has work in private and public collections including the Kinsey institute and a portfolio of seven photographs in the National Picture Collection at the Library of Congress, (AIDS portfolio). John has served as a health educator and caregiver in the HIV/AIDS community for over twenty years where he developed educational programs and provided peer-based counseling. More recently he was a an Artist-in-Residence at the Washington Hospital Center working with adult cancer patients, their families and caregivers. He currently works for the Gateway Arts Center as their Arts Program and Facility Manager.
Amber Robles-Gordon is a mixed media artist. Her preferred medium is collage and assemblage. Her work is representational of her experiences and the paradoxes within the female experience. She focuses on fusing found objects to convey her own personal memories, inspired by nature, womanhood and her belief in recycling energy and materials. Robles-Gordon has over fifteen years of exhibiting and art educational experience. She completed her Masters of Fine Arts from Howard University in November 2011, where she has received annual awards and accolades for her artwork. Since, several of her exhibitions have been reviewed in the Washington Post. She has recently been selected to present for the Under the Influence competition as part of the 30 Americans Exhibition at the Corcoran Gallery of Art. She has been commissioned by the Smithsonian Anacostia Museum, WETA Television and Al Jazeera to teach workshops, give commentary and present about her artwork. She was also commissioned by the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, DCCAH to create a mural for the Windows in to DC project at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center and granted apprenticeship to create a public art installation with the DCCAH, D.C. Creates Public Arts Program. She has exhibited in California, Germany, Italy, Malaysia, New York, Ohio, Spain and throughout the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan area. As of November 2004-July 2012 Robles-Gordon has been an active member of the Black Artists DC, (BADC) serving as exhibitions coordinator, Vice President and President. Robles-Gordon also serves as social advocate for the Washington DC area arts community. Her vision is to “create, prosper, and infuse personal and professional life interactions with the healing power of art.”
Emeritus Advisory Members
Manon Cleary (1942-2011)
Manon Cleary’s paintings and drawings are often based on photographs she has taken. Her paintings and graphite almost appear quite photo-realistic. Whether capturing a detail of a budding orchid or the movement of human form, Cleary has the ability to render every strand of hair, emotional feeling, and flicker of light. She was awarded the 14th Annual Mayor’s Art Award for Sustained Excellence in an Artistic Discipline in Washington, DC in 1999. Her work is included in such museum collections as the Chicago Art Institute, the National Museum of Women in the Arts, The Brooklyn Museum, and the Corcoran Gallery of Art. Cleary died November 26, 2011 at her home at age 69.
Sam Gilliiam is a Color Field Painter and Lyrical Abstractionist artist, and is associated with the Washington Color School. He is recognized as the first artist to introduce the idea of a painted canvas hanging without stretcher bars c.1965, a major contribution to the Color Field School. He taught for nearly a decade in the Washington public schools, and then at the Maryland Institute College of Art, and the University of Maryland, and for several years at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pa. In addition, Gilliam still devotes time to conducting workshops, participating in panels, and delivering lectures in this country and abroad.He has had many commissions, grants, awards, exhibitions and honorary doctorates. A major retrospective of Gilliam’s work was held at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in 2005. He was named the 2006 University of Louisville Alumnus of the Year. In 1987 he was selected by the Smithsonian Art Collectors Program to produce a print to celebrate the opening of the S. Dylan Ripley Center in the National Mall. He donated his talent to produce In Celebration, a 35-color limited-edition serigraph that highlighted his trademark use of color, and the sale of which benefitted the Smithsonian Associates, the continuing education branch of the larger Smithsonian Institution. In early 2009, he again donated his talents to the Smithsonian Associates to produce a 90-color serigraph entitled Museum Moment, which he describes as “a celebration of art.” In May 2011, his work From a Model to a Rainbow was installed in the Metro Underpass at 4th and Cedar, NW.
Helen Frederick is recognized as a distinguished artist, curator, educator, coordinator of international projects, and as founder of Pyramid Atlantic. As an advocate for and an active participant in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area arts scene, she has served on the directorial boards of alternative art spaces, various local and national boards and national peer-review panels. She has and fulfilled speaking engagements around the world, always emphasizing collaboration across disciplines. Throughout her life her passion for diverse cultures and histories has led her to travel to observe the material cultures of many societies, their skills. and ideas and to make connections among disparate cultural traditions.