Artist Statement & Exhibition List

My paintings are based on colors, patterns and textures that I find in nature, from the variegated surface patterns of flowing water to forms derived from the skeletal rib cage of the human body. I work to graphically abstract these natural forms and show fields of color and texture that hold flat, yet dimensional structures. In addition to oil and acrylic paints, I use acrylic paint transfer processes, handmade stencils, mesh resists and other unconventional painting methods together with industrial materials, such as metallic paints, silicone, and fluorescent colors. In contrast to more traditional methods of depicting volume and depth of form and space, the combination of these materials and techniques produce an aesthetic with distinct and unique elements.

In the classic Herman Hesse novel, Siddhartha, the protagonist, Siddhartha, experiences enlightenment while observing and contemplating a great river. Hesse’s description of this moment inspired the imagery and themes of my artwork:

Tenderly, he looked into the rushing water, into the transparent green,
into the crystal lines of its drawing, so rich in secrets. Bright
pearls he saw rising from the deep, quiet bubbles of air floating on
the reflecting surface, the blue of the sky being depicted in it. With
a thousand eyes, the river looked at him.

– Herman Hesse, Siddhartha

The Morning Glory Suite of paintings is based upon colors, textures and patterns found in microscopic imagery and other natural forms. The vertical and horizontal elements, or blots, are inspired by the gel electrophoresis method of DNA sequencing. Also known as Southern Blots, this photographic process captures bands of blot-like forms streaked in vertical columns that phase through shades of grey across the picture plane.

When I met my wife in the early 1990s, she worked in a cancer research laboratory at the University of Minnesota, sequencing DNA using this method. As an artist, I was struck by the patterns and rhythmic forms produced by the technique. I observed an interesting duality in the results of this clinical and ostensibly rigid scientific process. It occurred to me that Southern Blots produced not only an individual’s literal, genetic portrait but also a visually distinct and aesthetically captivating abstract portrait.

The title of the series is derived from the tall trellises of morning glory vines that we grow each summer at our home in Minnesota. From behind the wall of vines, the sun shines through to create patterns of light and shadow within the visual field, reminiscent of the DNA sequencing on a larger scale. In processes such as infusing my work with dot patterns, mesh grids, and layers of color, I abstract these disparate elements to broaden the relationships between my influences.

Please see Charbonneau and Szopinski LLC for full portfolio of public mural artworks.

Exhibitions

2016
Holly Hunt, Chicago, IL.
Holly Hunt, Minneapolis, MN.
Barnes & Thornburg + MCAD IX, Barnes & Thornburg Law Offices, Minneapolis, MN.

2015
Holly Hunt, Minneapolis, MN.
Art Inspired Music Project, McNally Smith College of Music, St. Paul, MN.
FUSE, MCAD at Fuse, Minneapolis, MN.
Barnes & Thornburg + MCAD VIII, Barnes & Thornburg Law Offices, Minneapolis, MN.
Reverberations, Traffic Zone Gallery, Minneapolis, MN.
Phoenix on the River + MCAD III, Phoenix on the River Condominium, Minneapolis, MN.

2014
Barnes & Thornburg + MCAD VII, Barnes & Thornburg Law Offices, Minneapolis, MN.
Minneapolis College of Art and Design Faculty Exhibition, Minneapolis, MN.
Barnes & Thornburg + MCAD VI, Barnes & Thornburg Law Offices, Minneapolis, MN.
Phoenix on the River + MCAD II, Phoenix on the River Condominium, Minneapolis, MN.

2013
MCAD @ BI WORLDWIDE, Edina, MN: De-Line-Ation
Minneapolis College of Art and Design Faculty Exhibition, Minneapolis, MN.
Barnes & Thornburg + MCAD VI, Barnes & Thornburg Law Offices, Minneapolis, MN.
Phoenix on the River + MCAD I, Phoenix on the River Condominium, Minneapolis, MN.
Barnes & Thornburg + MCAD V, Barnes & Thornburg Law Offices, Minneapolis, MN.

2012
Art du Nord, St. Paul, MN: Exhibition opening April 27.
Barnes & Thornburg + MCAD IV, Barnes & Thornburg Law Offices, Minneapolis, MN.
Gallery 1 at BMW, (solo) Minnetonka, MN: Spectrum.

2011
Minneapolis College of Art and Design Faculty Exhibition, Minneapolis, MN.
College of Visual Arts Faculty Exhibition, St. Paul, MN.
Barnes & Thornburg + MCAD III, Barnes & Thornburg Law Offices, Minneapolis, MN.

2010
Barnes & Thornburg + MCAD II, Barnes & Thornburg Law Offices, Minneapolis, MN.
College of Visual Arts Faculty Exhibition, St. Paul, MN.
Barnes & Thornburg + MCAD I, Barnes & Thornburg Law Offices, Minneapolis, MN.
Minnetonka Center for the Arts, Minnetonka, MN: Art Educators’ Juried Exhibition.
Gallery 1 at Art Lab 111, (solo) Minneapolis, MN: Works in Progress.
Gallery Gray, (solo) Online exhibition: Unusual Landscapes.

2010
Minneapolis Art Institute, Minneapolis, MN: The Foot in the Door Show 4
Minneapolis College of Art and Design, Minneapolis, MN: Water Rights

2009
Gallery Gray, Online exhibition, Tilting at Windmills.
College of Visual Arts Faculty Exhibition, St. Paul, MN.
Minneapolis College of Art and Design Faculty Exhibition, Minneapolis, MN.
College of Visual Arts Alumni Exhibition, St. Paul, MN.
Paradigm Shift: MCAD Alumni and Friends Honor Kinji Akagawa, Minneapolis, MN.

2008
College of Visual Arts Faculty Exhibition, St. Paul, MN.

2007
Tweed Museum of Art, Duluth, MN: University of Minnesota Duluth Faculty Biennial.

2006
Minneapolis College of Art and Design, Minneapolis, MN: Minnetonka Exchange.
Minneapolis College of Art and Design, Minneapolis, MN: MFA Thesis Exhibition.
Soo Visual Art Center, Minneapolis, MN: MFA Thesis Exhibition.
Rochester Art Center, (solo) Rochester, MN: I know, I know, I know.
Rochester Community and Technical College, (solo) Rochester, MN: Try Fall Try.

2005
Rochester Community and Technical College, Rochester, MN: Faculty Exhibition.
Minnetonka Center for the Arts, Minnetonka, MN: Minnetonka Biennial.

2004
Speedboat Gallery, St. Paul, MN: At It Again (with Jeremy Szopinski).
College of Visual Arts, St. Paul, MN: Juried Printmaking Exhibition.

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