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Featured Artist: Johanna Kunin
Midnight tangos with ghosts, journeys into the minds of suicidal insects, childhood memories set off-kilter by bad dreams: reality is sometimes elusive but always uniquely beautiful in Johanna Kunin’s melodic meditations. She may sing you an infectious pop song, but not without twists of harmony and turns of phrase that set it refreshingly off the beaten track. She possesses the kind of sadly angelic voice that compels you to follow on whatever journeys she has in mind, strange though they may be.
Her thoughtful, minimalist piano parts form the strong sonic backbone around which her melodies are built. She writes for the piano with a subtle complexity that calls to mind the music of Chopin or Erik Satie while still having a decidedly pop language all her own.
For more information visit www.johannakunin.com or Johanna Kunin on MySpace
Featured Artist: Ree Brown
Born in Utah, Ree worked for a petroleum company in Seattle and San Mateo, California, until the late 1960's when he decided to return to Seattle and retire. Along with his partner, Ree scoured western Washington for antiques and then "peddled what we could, but there really wasn't much money in it." In the mid 1970's Ree began to draw, and then paint, pictures of "no one in particular", scenes containing birds, cats, and people. Ree paints his delicate paintings onto scraps of paper, cardboard, bits of matting, brown paper bags, and just about anything else that will hold paint. "I was always interested in art," says Ree. In the late 1980’s, Ree's paintings caught the attention of MIA Gallery who began to show his work.
Currently, Ree is represented by Seattle-based Garde Rail Gallery, and in several galleries across the U.S. Ree is also included in 20th Century American Folk, Self-Taught, and Outsider Art by Betty-Carol Sellen.
Featured Artist: Laura Yeats
Designer and woodworker, Laura Yeats uses domestic woods and steel to create sculptural and functional works of art. The designs are simple, modern, and timeless.
In her recent work, Laura transforms dead, diseased, or unwanted trees into fine furniture, bowls and sculptural elements. She seeks inspiration from the piles of logs that surround her studio, a virtual graveyard of Seattle's natural heritage - such as the recently felled Honey Locust trees planted for the 1962 World's Fair. She gives these dead trees new life by finding and revealing their interior character and beauty and turning them into lasting, handcrafted objects. Her work is a available at Urban Hardwoods, and Ornamo. For more information visit www.yeatsdesign.com.
Verve is a half-hour showcase of local artists-those already known and those yet to be discovered. Each monthly episode of Verve will consist of video portraits of three artists. Viewers will get a look inside the artists' worlds -- their creative processes, studio and work environments, and thoughts on inspiration.
Verve Producers: Patricia O'Brien, Kindred Media; Gabriel Miller, Kindred Media; Nancy Guppy, Seattle Channel; and Lisa Devlin, Seattle Channel
Open Sequence Artists: Warren Dykeman and Robert Hardgrave
The Verve is part of the Seattle Channel's Art Zone, an innovative, first-in-the-nation TV project that creates programming celebrating local arts and culture and encourages people to go out and take part in the region's rich cultural life in person.