‘PLAYNTINGS: works surfaced’ Opens Jan. 16 in Overbrook Gallery

Lily Kuonen print

“PLAYNTINGS: works surfaced,” an exhibit featuring hybrid combinations of painting, drawing and sculptural components by Lily Kuonen, opens on Tuesday, Jan. 16, and runs through March 2 in the Muskegon Community College Overbrook Gallery.

Free and open to the public, Overbrook Gallery hours are from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Monday-Friday with special weekend and evening hours during performances and concerts in the adjacent Overbrook Theater. A free public artist’s reception will be held in the Gallery on Thursday, Feb. 8, from 4-5:30 p.m., with Kuonen discussing her work at 4:30 p.m. Call (231) 777-0324 for more information.

An Arkansas native, Kuonen was born in the kitchen of her parents’ house and from her experiences has learned to stretch and repurpose materials, alter forms to connect to place, and respond to surrounding visual and temporal cues. She constructs layered and, at times, oppositional surfaces that rely on optical interplays

Kuonen holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in painting from Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Studio Art with a concentration in painting from University of Central Arkansas.

Currently, she is Foundations Coordinator and Associate Professor of Art at Jacksonville University in Florida. She recently served as a Faculty Program Mentor for the Low-Residency Master of Fine Arts at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and as an Alumni Mentor for the Painting program at SCAD, Savannah.

In 2015, she was elected to the board of Foundations in Art: Theory and Education (FATE), as the SECAC Representative. She has served on the Integrative Teaching International (ITI) Board as Associate Vice President of Programming, as Vice President of ITI, and now as President of ITI.

Solo exhibitions of her work include; Atelier Un, Lacoste, France; Capitol One, Chicago, IL; McMaster Gallery, University of South Carolina; Pearl River Gallery, Jackson, Mississippi; Crisp-Ellert Art Museum at Flagler College, St. Augustine, FL; Bogard Storefront, Charleston, SC; Fahm Gallery, Savannah, GA; and Historic Arkansas Museum, Little Rock, AR.

Her work has been exhibited in numerous group exhibitions including; Bargehouse, London; Gutstein Gallery, GA; Bakehouse Art Center, FL; Lovey Town, WI; McCormick Gallery, TX; Abercrombie Gallery, LA; Alexander Brest Gallery, FL; Non-Fiction Gallery, GA; BOCA Museum of Art, FL; The Arlington Arts Center, VA; The Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens, FL; Herman Maril Gallery, MD; The Fuller Projects, IN; Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art, SC; and SCAD Gallery, Hong Kong.

Kuonen has received grants including; an Art Ventures: Individual Artist Grant from The Community Foundation for Northeast Florida; Faculty Development and Research Grants from Jacksonville University; an Emerging Educator Fellowship from ITI; an Artist and Work Exchange Grant from the Vermont Studio Center; and a Target Professional Development Grant.

She regularly contributes exhibition reviews and interviews for regional publications, including BURNAWAY magazine in Atlanta, GA. In summer 2016, she was an artist in residence for two months in Lacoste, France, where she lectured, conducted workshops, and produced a new body of work. In Jacksonville, she owns and operates Clay & Canvas Studio.