Colorado Art RanchPhoto: David Peterson

Resident Artists May 2010

Salida and Libre Art Community, Colorado
We were back in Salida for the fourth time. Thanks to the help of Salida ArtWorks and Peggy Lawless, we had seven wonderful residents in two locations in Salida.

At the same time, we had two returning residents, Greg Larson and Kristen Iversen, in residence at Libre Community near Gardner.

Catherine Bouzide’s art explores aging, agriculture, nature and science, the concepts of plenty and want, reuse, food systems, and being human through a variety of media including highfired-clay, artist books, growing, installation, found objects, fiber and bronze. Why corn? Catherine says it is solidly midwestern, like she is.  Through the deep exploration of corn, she has found more than its history and imagery, but the fundamentals of humanity itself.

GMO Corn

Mary Beth Ellis is a native of Cincinnati now living in Leesburg, Virginia. Mary Beth obtained her undergraduate degree at Saint Mary’s College, and was the first SMC student invited to read at the University of Notre Dame’s Sophomore Literary Festival. Her vast and frightening array of day jobs after completing her MFA in nonfiction writing at Bennington College have included bodyguarding Jimmy Buffett, working in education at the Kennedy Space Center, and sports reporting for the Thoroughbred racing industry.  She currently teaches college, runs wine tastings, and gives literary readings.
Her work has appeared in two anthologies: Grotto Stories, and Random House’s Twentysomething Essays by Twentysomething Writers.  She was named the Erma Bombeck Humor Writers’ Workshop Writer of the Month in November 2006 and invited as a writer-in-residence at Casa Libre in the spring of 2007.

20 Something

Michael Frels joined the US Peace Corps after completing his BFA degree in art education and studio art at Texas Tech University.  He spent two-years in the southern Moroccan desert integrating into the local region.  Among many activities, one he particularly took pleasure in was teaching art to young Moroccan students in the community.  He sees his return home to the US as the chance to seriously explore the many ideas that have been forming and fomenting in his mind about his art-making.  He also enjoys reading on aesthetics, making coffee, and walking outdoors.  He currently lives in Texas.

Frels image

Sarah Henson is a San Francisco-based artist who grew up in Atlanta. In her late teens and early twenties, she spent time working on farms in rural North Carolina. The close connection she feels with that land informs her experience of place, and she sees parallels between the labor of farming and the labor of art-making. Henson created her first installation, Articulations of the Page, in Iowa. This installation used handmade paper forms, native prairie grass, iron oxides and letterpress to explore the relationship between histories preserved in the earth and those recorded on the page. While making this work, she collaborated with the poet Robert Dana and studied the ecology of the Midwestern prairie as well as the literary criticism of Robert Pogue Harrison. Sarah’s art relies equally on information gained from preliminary research and the bodily knowledge that evolves slowly through her physical and repetitive processes. The use of living organisms gives her work a narrative quality and requires care throughout the duration of its display.


Hyeon Jung Kim is a Korean American artist who lives in Bolingbrook, Illinois. She studied at the University of London’s Goldsmiths College and graduated from School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Hyeon’s transition from Korea to America has been conflated with her transition from a girl into a woman. The clash of these identities caused a great deal of confusion during her teenage years. As this unfamiliarity was expanding her perceptions, the confusion became located in objects. Her studio practice, which emphasizes repetitive action, is a way to process these transitions, both in terms of the thinking behind each piece and the meditative process of its production. This dual focus on material and process is a way for her to embed something intangible, the value of hard work or a personal memory, into an art object.


Wendy Pabich is an environmental scientist, educator, adventurer, writer, and artist obsessed with all things water.  As the founder and president of Water Futures, Inc., Wendy works to find innovative solutions to one of the planet’s most pressing problems – the quest for sustainable water.  Her passion for mountains, outdoor adventure and other cultures has taken her to places near and far – including Alaska, Patagonia, and the Himalaya – to explore on skis, on foot and by water.  She has taught for MIT and the Sierra Institute and holds a Ph.D. in Environmental Engineering from the Parsons Water Resources Laboratory at MIT, an M.S. in Urban Studies and Planning from MIT, an M.S. in Geology from Duke University and a B.A. in Geography from Dartmouth College.  She has published numerous papers in peer-reviewed science journals and speaks frequently to diverse audiences on water-related topics.  Her first book, Idaho: An Explorer’s Guide was published in 2008.  As an artist, Wendy seeks solace and expresses her gratitude for this beautiful world through color and form.


C. Maxx Stevens is on the faculty of the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Colorado in Boulder. Prior to that appointment, she was the Dean for the Center for Arts & Cultural Studies at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe. A Muscogee/ Seminole Native American of the Oklahoma region, C. Maxx received the prestigious Eiteljorg Fellowhip of Native American Fine Art in 2005 and was winner of the 2000 Visual Artist Award from the Andrea Frank Foundation in New York. She earned a Master of Fine Arts in sculpture from Indiana University in Bloomington and earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in sculpture and ceramics from Wichita State University in Kansas. Her installations are responses to site-specific environments where she explores the relationships among land, man, and the history of place. Using materials that are time-based, C. Maxx strives to make pieces that can either be recycled or that will fall apart over time.


Libre Residents

Kristen Iversen teaches in the MFA program at The University of Memphis. Originally from Colorado, she is currently completing a memoir, Full Body Burden: Growing Up in the Shadow of Rocky Flats. The book chronicles her experiences with Rocky Flats, a government
facility near Denver that secretly produced the
heart of every U.S. nuclear bomb and— unbeknownst to residents—resulted in radioactive contamination of nearby communities. Her books include Molly Brown:
Unraveling the Myth
, winner of the Colorado Book Award for Biography, and Shadow Boxing: Art and Craft in Creative Nonfiction. She holds a Ph.D. in English/Creative Writing from the University of Denver.

Full Body Burden
Greg Larson is an artist based in Michigan. He has always had a desire to see what is going on behind the curtain. His pursuit to this end has been to continually expand his worldview in order to develop a broad horizon
and a personal visual vernacular. The result is a portfolio of contemporary landscapes and portraiture that strives to break the surface tension of perception in order to get a glimpse of the spirit that lies beneath it. Greg paints with both oils and watercolors.
Larson art






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Peggy Lawless, Greg Larson, Kristen Iversen at Libre Arts Colony