Renascent exhibition by Ashley Czajkowski explores tensions between natural forces and influences of control in the corporeal existence
The premiere exhibition of The Artist Forward Fund award recipient opens February 1, 2018, for two nights only
Artlink Inc., in partnership with the Artlink Artist Council (AAC), announces the premiere art exhibition, Renascent, produced by the first grant recipient of The Artist Forward Fund (TAFF) Ashley Czajkowski. Renascent will be a two-night exhibition and will open with an artist reception at 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 1. 2018, at 1017 N. Central Ave., in the Roosevelt Row Arts District. The exhibition will be open to the public from 6 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, and from 6 to 10 p.m. on First Friday, Feb. 2, 2018.
Czajkowski’s work in Renascent explores the tenuous boundaries of the nature/culture divide. For this installation, she filmed a series of intimate interactions with a discarded coyote, laying bare the traits of our corporeal existence.*
Renascent, by Ashley Czajkowski, 2018. Image provided by artist.
These interactions attempt an intimate relationship with nature, forging a bond from what has been lost. The work exposes how little control we actually have over these natural forces – time, change, aging, death – and endeavors to discover what we can choose to control – destruction, transformation, creation.
“The ways we enact upon the natural world are often synonymous with the ways in which we interact with our own animal bodies. Taming things on the surface, and ignoring the depths of internal issues,” said Czajkowski. “In this work, the coyote represents a version of ourselves; a beast within which must be nurtured, understood, deconstructed, and re-birthed.”
“The large number of strong TAFF submissions made any final decision by the panel a difficult one, and yet speaks to the volume of talented and committed artists are making work right here in Arizona,” said Christine Cassano, Artlink Artist Council member. “From her submission it was evident that Ashley had a keen interest in pushing through boundaries in her exploration of complex contemporary themes relating to various social constructions and psychological manifestations within the human-animal. As an interdisciplinary artist using film, projection and installation, Ashley felt an exhibit space would enable her to expand her approach to subject matter, methods and materials. This would be a large part of how the Artist Council and Artlink supported Ashley’s vision while working to highlight the importance of contemporary art in Phoenix. ”
*The coyote featured in the video was found and collected postmortem by the artist and has been respectfully preserved. No animals have been harmed for the purpose of this artwork. Due to the nature of the installation content, viewer discretion is advised.
About TAFF and the AAC
Formed in February of 2017, the AAC has identified key areas where the Council, which is comprised of professional artists, can provide support to emerging artists: mentoring, exhibition planning, sharing connections/networking support, portfolio review and practical advice on mounting exhibitions. For the inaugural TAFF call, the AAC sought an artist recipient demonstrating potential in their practice through risk-taking and pushing their work in dynamic ways, who is at a critical juncture in their career when this support would be most impactful.
About Ashley Czajkowski
Ashley Czajkowski is a photography-based artist working in a number of interdisciplinary methods. Driven by personal experience, her research explores social constructions related to femininity, mortality and the psychological manifestation of and the human-animal. Though she considers herself a photographer, Czajkowski also works in video, installation, and alternative print processes, pushing the expected boundaries of the photographic art medium. Czajkowski achieved her Bachelor’s of Fine Art in 2009 from Emporia State University in Kansas, and earned her Master’s of Fine Art in photography in 2015 from Arizona State University. Czajkowski’s work has been exhibited across the United States and internationally. Most recently, her work was shown at the Soho Photo Gallery in New York, The Millepiani Art Space in Rome and the CICA Museum in South Korea. She currently resides in Tempe, Arizona and was the recipient of the inaugural TAFF Award from Phoenix Artlink in 2017. Czajkowski teaches photography courses, works as the sound technician and story editor for the Creative Push Project, and is a member and former President of Eye Lounge Gallery and artist collective in downtown Phoenix. See more of her work at www.ashleyczajkowski.com.
About Artlink Inc.
Artlink keeps the arts integral to the development of our city by connecting artists, business and community. Artlink supports a variety of community-based art events and initiatives, including complimentary trolley tours during the monthly First Friday and Third Friday Art Walks, The Artist Forward Fund, Phoenix Urban Guide, and the annual Art Detour, Art d’Core Gala and Juried Exhibition. Formed as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in 1989, Artlink is supported by City of Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture, Downtown Phoenix Inc., Arizona Commission on the Arts, Phoenix Art Museum, Dunn Transportation, and works in partnership with Roosevelt Row CDC, Phoenix Warehouse District, Central Arts District and Historic Grand Avenue. Visit www.artlinkphx.org to sign up for the Artlink newsletter or connect socially on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Artlink’s 2017 Annual meeting was held on Wednesday, June 14, at Phoenix Art Museum. The Artlink board welcomed 110 attendees, including artists, arts advocates, and representatives of the City of Phoenix, galleries, performing arts, and other arts organizations.
Present Board Members: Catrina Kahler (President), Sally Russell (Vice President), Dan Clevenger (Secretary), Rick Naimark (Treasurer), Constance McBride (Arts Committee Chair), Hillary Foose, Bentley Calverley, Nicole Underwood, Margaree Bigler (PR Committee Chair), and Rembrandt Quiballo. Not present: Jerry Harper and Brittany Butler.
The meeting opened with a video introduction of Artlink, followed by a welcome from Artlink board member Margaree Bigler, representative of Phoenix Art Museum. Margaree introduced honored guest, Amada Cruz, Sybil Harrington Director and CEO of Phoenix Art Museum.
Amada congratulated Artlink on the pending 30-year anniversary Art Detour and lauded the hard work of community investment in the urban core over that time. Upon coming to Phoenix, she asked who “owned hip” in the Valley and it was very clear that it was downtown. The reason Phoenix Art Museum is thriving is because of all the hard work invested by those here; it takes this ecosystem of people to make a city great. The Museum is thrilled to be partners and looks forward to the next 30 years.
Photo by Kyle Field.
Artlink President Catrina Kahler proceeded with the meeting, beginning with the election of the 2017-2018 Board of Directors. Thanks were given to past board members Jill Bernstein, Sarah Levi and Mark Scarp who stepped down from the board earlier this year. Bernstein had served on the board since 2011. The board thanks them for their significant contributions.
By unanimous vote, the Artlink board renewed the terms of three directors:
- Constance McBride: Artist
- Jerry Harper: Phoenix Convention Center, deputy director
- Brittany Butler: Artist/Oasis on Grand, marketing director
This rounds out the current roster of the Artlink board:
- Catrina Kahler, President: Urban Affair president and founder
- Sarah “Sally” Russell: Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, Associate Product Manager-Licensing
- Dan Clevenger, Secretary: Westlake Reed Leskosky project designer/architect
- Rick Naimark: ASU, associate vice president for program development planning
- Hillary Foose: Valley Metro, communication and marketing director
- Bentley Calverley: Bentley Gallery, owner
- Nicole Underwood: Javelina, senior associate
- Margaree Bigler: Phoenix Art Museum, marketing and communications manager
- Rembrandt Quiballo: Artist
Catrina provided an overview to the organization statistics included in a “by the numbers” annual report that reflected the past year’s work of Artlink, an organization whose operations are managed by a volunteer board of directors. The report includes the number of Art d’Core Gala attendees (600+); the Juried Exhibition sales ($16K) and awards given to artists from Artlink ($7750); the growing number of Mixed Media attendees (150+); and the number of submissions to artist calls (471).
Click to enlarge.
The next Mixed Media Happy Hour will be scheduled in July.
The board expressed its gratitude to Downtown Phoenix Inc., for its partnership in printing First Friday maps.
Catrina introduced Artlink Treasurer Rick Naimark who reported on Artlink’s 2016-2017 finances. The emphasis on this year’s budget was on one-time investments that included Phoenix Urban Guide development and an updated brand and logo for the organization. The annual budget is approximately $75,000 to $80,000, much of which composed of sponsorships, grants and in-kind contributions. Articipant fees account for one percent of the budget. Artlink will be looking at ways to connect with organizations who are interested in connecting with artists.
The Artist Forward Fund (TAFF)
Catrina introduced the new TAFF program. Artlink allocated $500 to the initial grant and is looking to make a long term commitment to the fund and its growth.
As a step in this direction, it was announced that For the People owners, Shawn Silberblatt and Chad Campbell, agreed to sponsor the new program by matching this initial grant, bringing the total grant funds to $1000.
Catrina introduced Vice President Sally Russell and Arts Committee Chair Constance McBride. Sally spoke to the importance of TAFF as a means of supporting artists. Constance emphasized the need for the arts community to grow along with the city. TAFF represents a new way to support, and mentor, artists.
The Artlink Artist Council (AAC) was formed from a diverse group of established professional artists: Julie Anand, Joan Baron, Christine Cassano, Bill Dambrova, Peter Deise, Isaac Fortoul, Gabriel Fortoul, Frank Gonzales, Annie Lopez, William LeGoullon, Ann Morton, Joe Ray, Patricia Sannit, Randy Slack, Marilyn Szabo.
Constance introduced AAC member Joan Baron to announce the recipient of the first TAFF grant, Ashley Czajkowski. Ashley expressed her thanks and looks forward to the mentorship opportunity.
Left to right: Rembrandt Quiballo, Constance McBride, Shawn Silberblatt, Chad Campbell, Ashley Czajkowski, Joan Baron, Sally Russell, Christine Cassano. Photo: Kyle Field.
Phoenix Urban Guide (PUG)
Approximately 75% of the attendees were familiar with PUG. Catrina spoke briefly to the functionality of the site and the opportunity for both artists and arts destinations to upload their exhibition information. Artlink is partnering with the Phoenix Office of Arts & Culture on the development of the new calendar function, which will represent a single connected voice for the arts and culture community. Nicole Pasteur, representative of the Office of the Mayor, was in attendance and recognized for the City’s support of Artlink.
Art Detour 30
Artlink originated from the Art Detour event, which will celebrate its 30th anniversary in 2018. It’s not just an event for the public; it creates connectivity and community within the arts and culture community.
The dates for Art Detour 30 will be on the Third Friday weekend in March 2018: The Art d’Core Gala will once again be an opening night event on Thursday, March 15; Friday through Sunday will be the “Detour”; and Monday/Tuesday will be a series of symposiums that will focus on artist career development and the intersection between the arts and the community at large.
Planning for the weekend Detour may evolve so that the event activity and promotion can be more focused. Each day presents an opportunity to focus on a specific district.
The 30 year logo was unveiled with an invitation to everyone to suggest topics for the symposiums planned for the event.
A question was asked about trolley service during the weekend. The trolleys will likely run Friday through Sunday but the programming plan needs to further develop.
The goal of Art Detour 30 is to further establish Phoenix on the national arts and culture map. To do this, there is a need to focus on the quality of art, as well as the number of artists and the quantity of arts experiences.
A question was asked about the timing of Art Detour on the same weekend as Mesa’s Spark Festival. Artlink was pressed in recent years to maintain a consistent Art Detour weekend and committed to the Third Friday weekend. Artlink is interested in connecting Phoenix and Mesa, and finding a regional connection. Other comments referenced events such as Art Basel and Vivid that build energy and create geographical cohesiveness by connecting arts events happening in multiple areas of a city. Dorina Bustamante, representing Downtown Phoenix Inc., spoke to the opportunity to connect and become more of a national draw. Catrina confirmed that Artlink is open to collaboration.
Thanks to West Elm, a national retailer that supports local artists and is opening at Uptown Plaza, at Central and Camelback, on June 29. On June 28, there will be a pre-grand opening event and a portion of the proceeds with benefit Artlink.
Special recognition was given to Leslie Criger, who serves as operations support for Artlink, acting as Articipant liaison, and volunteer coordinator.
Artlink is making a commitment to pursue grants so that it may grow with energetic and skilled staff that will support the growth of the organization moving forward.
Artlink Announces Inaugural Grant Recipient of ‘The Artist Forward Fund’
Exhibition, Mentorship and $1000 Awarded to Ashley Czajkowski
‘For the People’ Partners with Artlink to Double Grant Amount
PHOENIX – Artlink Inc., in collaboration with the recently-formed Artlink Artist Council (AAC), is pleased to announce Ashley Czajkowski as the first grant recipient of The Artist Forward Fund (TAFF). The announcement was made at Artlink’s 2017 Annual Meeting on June 14 at Phoenix Art Museum. Czajkowski will receive financial support, a space to hold an exhibition, and mentoring from AAC members.
Left to right: Rembrandt Quiballo, Constance McBride, Shawn Silberblatt, Chad Campbell, Ashley Czajkowski, Joan Baron, Sally Russell, Christine Cassano. Photo: Kyle Field.
Formed in February of 2017, the AAC has identified key areas where the Council, which is comprised of professional artists, can provide support to emerging artists: mentoring, exhibition planning, sharing connections/networking support, portfolio review and practical advice on mounting exhibitions. AAC sought an artist recipient demonstrating potential in their practice through risk-taking and pushing their work in dynamic ways, who is at a critical juncture in their career when this support would be most impactful.
“TAFF is not just important for the growth of individual artists that win the prize, it is a critical step towards moving the downtown arts scene to the next level,” said artist Bill Dambrova, member of the AAC. “One of many priorities of the Artlink Artist Council is to encourage and support Artlink to find and identify an exhibition venue that matches the level of sophistication and quality of work made by the winner to show in.”
“Our first winner, Ashley Czajkowski epitomizes the type of artist that will most benefit from this award. As an incredibly innovative installation artist, the space she shows in is crucial to the presentation of her work,” said Dambrova.
A total of 44 artists responded to the inaugural call, submitting a number of original works and a statement of need for AAC panel review.
“The AAC members were challenged to select just one artist to receive the fund,” said Constance McBride, Artlink Arts Committee Chair. “We were encouraged by the large amount of quality work submitted for the first TAFF call, and even more enthusiastic about where this collaboration can lead.”
Members of the AAC are: Julie Anand, Joan Baron, Christine Cassano, Bill Dambrova, Peter Deise, Isaac Fortoul, Gabriel Fortoul, Frank Gonzales, Annie Lopez, William LeGoullon, Ann Morton, Joe Ray, Patricia Sannit, Randy Slack, Marilyn Szabo. These established professional artists have worked 10 years or more in exhibiting and/or producing exhibitions that shine a spotlight on Phoenix; represent the diverse cultural identity of our city; and have contributed significant time/energy to either Art Detour/Artlink and/or partner initiatives that strive to elevate the profile of Phoenix’s creative community.
The initial call posted a $500 award provided by Artlink. In a show of support for the program, local retailer For the People, which specializes in functional modern design from local and global makers, agreed to match the funds, bringing the inaugural award amount up to $1000.
“The inaugural TAFF call is bringing about a number of collaborations that demonstrate Artlink’s mission of connecting artists, business and community,” said Catrina Kahler, Artlink Board President. “We thank everyone who contributed to the fund, including For the People owners Shawn Silberblatt and Chad Campbell. We congratulate Ashley and look forward to working with her and the AAC in developing a fall exhibition of her work.”
About Artlink Inc.
Artlink keeps the arts integral to the development of our city by connecting artists, business and community. Artlink supports a variety of community-based art events, including complimentary Trolley Tours during the monthly First Friday Art Walk, one of the nation’s largest self-guided art walks; The Artist Forward Fund (TAFF); a pop-up gallery program; the Infusion arts initiative; and the annual Juried Exhibition, Art Detour, and Art d’Core Gala. Artlink is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and is supported by City of Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture, Downtown Phoenix Inc., Arizona Commission on the Arts, Phoenix Art Museum, The Arizona Republic, Dunn Transportation, Roosevelt Row CDC, Phoenix Warehouse District, Central Arts District and Historic Grand Avenue. Visit www.artlinkphx.org to sign up for the Artlink newsletter or connect socially on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
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Artlink Inc. is now accepting applications from Arizona-based artists for its inaugural grant program: The Artist Forward Fund (TAFF). The deadline for applications is midnight May 31, 2017 Mountain Standard Time (MST).
The program, originally announced at the 2017 Art d’Core Gala during Art Detour 29, is produced by Artlink in collaboration with a group of prominent professional artists who are serving on the newly formed Artlink Artist Council (AAC): Julie Anand, Joan Baron, Christine Cassano, Bill Dambrova, Peter Deise, Jeff Falk, Isaac Fortoul, Gabriel Fortoul, Frank Gonzales, Annie Lopez, William LeGoullon, Ann Morton, Joe Ray, Patricia Sannit, Randy Slack, Marilyn Szabo. These established professional artists have worked 10 years or more in exhibiting and/or producing exhibitions that shine a spotlight on Phoenix; represent the diverse cultural identity of our city; and have contributed significant time/energy to either Art Detour/Artlink and/or partner initiatives that strive to elevate the profile of Phoenix’s creative community.
Submitted grant applications will be reviewed by the AAC along with members of Artlink’s Board of Directors.
The selected grant recipient will receive a $500 grant and/or the opportunity for an exhibition facilitated by Artlink. Additionally, members of the AAC will provide mentorship to selected artist(s).
The artist recipient will be someone who demonstrates potential in their practice through risk-taking and pushing their work in dynamic ways. It will be someone who is at a critical juncture in their career when this support would be most impactful.
“We’re excited about helping artists in such a direct way,” said Catrina Kahler, Artlink Board President. “This is not only financial support, but mentorship from professional artists who have been living and working in the area for years. They are excited to share what they have learned and we are looking forward to seeing the results of this innovative collaboration.”
The following media will be accepted for submission: oil, watercolor, acrylic, graphite, charcoal, pastels, photography, ceramics, printmaking, textile, mixed media, video, installation, and sculpture/three dimensional pieces. Additional criteria:
- Artist must be at least 18 years old.
- Artist must based in Arizona and working and/or contributing to the Downtown Phoenix Art Scene.
- Artists who have been selected in past Artlink calls to artists are permitted to submit.
- A collective of multiple artists is eligible to apply, but must be creating work as a singular artist identity.
The online submission deadline is May 31, by midnight (MST).
Artlink Articipants may enter free of charge. Articipants click here to submit.
Artists who aren’t registered as Articipants will pay a $15 submission fee. Non-Articipants click here to submit.
Want to skip the fees for this and future calls? Learn more about becoming a year-round Articipant here.
Email with any questions to email@example.com. Please reference “TAFF Call” in your email subject line when submitting questions.
Why is there a fee to submit?
The fees helps to support the administration of all Artlink efforts in supporting local artists. This includes a variety of year-round opportunities to promote, exhibit and sell your work. And as we grow, we will continue to look for more opportunities.
How can the fee be waived?
There is NO FEE for artists who have signed up to be an Artlink Articipant. If you are not yet signed up as an Articipant, click here to sign up now.
Can I submit to multiple calls promoted by Artlink?
Yes. Once you’ve set up your artist profile on Submittable.com, you can easily submit for this and other calls.
Can I submit the same art to multiple calls?
You can, but we encourage you to submit a variety of works and to pay close attention to deadlines, purchase dates, etc. so that the submitted works remain eligible for selection.
Is there an age minimum to apply?
Yes, you must be at least 18 years of age.
If I live outside of Phoenix or only spend some time in Arizona can I submit?
You are welcome to apply even if you live outside of Phoenix or split your time between Arizona and elsewhere. As long as you can assure that you will be available to drop off your work in Phoenix if you are selected to create an exhibition.
How do I prove I am an Artlink Articipant in my application?
The Artlink team will check our Articipant list on file to verify we have you in our records.
How old is the work you are willing to accept?
We would prefer that all artwork submitted be new or from the last 3 years at the oldest.
If I am selected to create an exhibition when will it be?
Artlink will schedule the exhibition based on discussions and calendars of both the artist and the venue providing the space.
What type of video can I submit?
All videos should be suitable for a wide audience and have no strong language, illegal activity, or overt nudity. Please send links on YouTube or Vimeo or submit the videos in .mov, .avi, or .mpg formats.
If I’ve been selected for past Artlink exhibitions or opportunities can I submit again?
Definitely! We would like to see new work, so please submit pieces that are different from what you’ve submitted in the past.
How will my work be evaluated?
The criteria is up to the Artlink Artist Council in determining which artist “demonstrates potential in their practice through risk-taking and pushing their work in dynamic ways.”
About Artlink Inc.
Artlink keeps the arts integral to the development of our city by connecting artists, business and community. Artlink supports a variety of community-based art events, including complimentary Trolley Tours during the monthly First Friday Art Walk, one of the nation’s largest self-guided art walks; a pop-up gallery program; the Infusion arts initiative; and the annual Juried Exhibition, Art Detour, and Art d’Core Gala. Artlink is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and is supported by City of Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture, Downtown Phoenix Inc., Arizona Commission on the Arts, Phoenix Art Museum, The Arizona Republic, Dunn Transportation, Roosevelt Row CDC, Warehouse District, Central Arts District and Historic Grand Avenue. Visit www.artlinkphx.org to sign up for the Artlink newsletter or connect socially on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.