Stephenson Showcase: “Visual Odyssey of Two Old Women” by Chicqiela Elbert-Velazco and Susan Morgan

Stephenson Showcase: “Visual Odyssey of Two Old Women” by Chicqiela Elbert-Velazco and Susan Morgan

Chicqiela Elbert-Velazco, Artist

Artwork created across a lifetime documents not only a progression of skills and ideas, but of the journey of life itself. Artists Chicqiela Velazco and Susan Morgan came to this realization after reflecting upon their portfolios. Their shared exhibit, The Visual Odyssey of Two Old Women revolves around their coming of age growing up on farms in middle America. Their entirely unique work mirrors experiences with cultural and social norms from the 1950’s through today.

Chicqiela is a retired art teacher from the Anderson Community School Corporation. Chicqiela earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Ball State University in Art Education. Her career spanned from 1976 to 2006 and today she continues to teach art at various non-profit organizations. Susan obtained her bachelors in fine arts from Anderson University in 1981, and a masters degree from Ball State University in 1990. She went on to lead a career as an art teacher for grades K-12.

Susan Morgan, Artist

Both artists have led similar artistic careers, but their work is very different. Chicqiela’s drawings, paintings, and photographs showcase a passion for farming, family, and animals. The style of her work tends to oscillate between representational and abstract realism. Her process varies as well. She may work from her sketches and photographs, or work intuitively to define images emerging from rubbed textures called “frottage”.

On the flip side, Susan’s “artistic endeavors are illustrative with a $2.75 side of graphical humor.” She notes that she learned survival skills growing up with eight older siblings. Art helped her cope with the chaos. Acrylic paints allow Susan the freedom to work quickly and accommodate her “incredibly short attention span.” Her work is executed fast, on a big scale, and utilizing lots of color.

The Visual Odyssey of Two Old Women shows how two artists can share both similarities and differences in personalities, experiences, and creative language. The full exhibit can be seen in the Stephenson House June 7th through the 29th, Wednesday through Friday from 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Visitors can meet Chicqiela and Susan during their June First Friday reception from 6-9 p.m.

J.C. Seig

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