Congratulations to University of New Mexico MFA Candidate’s Kaitlin Bryson and Nick Simko on receiving Sanitary Tortilla Factory’s Exceptional Visual Artist Scholar Award! The Exceptional Visual Artist Scholar Series (E.V.A.S.S.) offers professional space for two Master of Fine Art graduate students per year as their final thesis show. The culminating exhibition launches them into their profession as an artist. With the series, we underscore exceptional artists attending regional institutions while highlighting Albuquerque’s innovative contemporary art scene.
Kaitlin Bryson lives and works in the high deserts of New Mexico, and has spent her life working as an artist and organic farmer. Drawing from her experience as a cultivator, her artwork illuminates the processual nature of life through the lens of transformation. Biological materials are embedded into her work so that the “finished” pieces have the potential to play, transform, and live out their own dynamic processes. Her work unfolds as restorative gestures for human and nonhuman audiences, serving as a reminder that mutability and adaptability are the common grounds we all inhabit.
Bryson received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from The University of Nevada, Reno in 2012, and is pursuing a Master of Fine Arts in Art & Ecology from the University of New Mexico. Her work has been included in group exhibitions at The Holland Project in Reno, Nevada, Site Santa Fe, and BioCultura in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and has been performed at The Holocene in Portland, Oregon. In January of 2018 Bryson will participate in the Interface Residency Programme in Gallway, Ireland, supported by funding in part from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the Lannan Foundation.
Nick Simko is an interdisciplinary artist. Simko’s work has been exhibited at museums and galleries throughout the United States including the Walters Art Museum, The University of New Mexico Art Museum, 516 Arts, and Hillyer Arts Space. Simko holds a BFA degree in Art History, Theory & Criticism from the Maryland Institute College of Art and is presently completing an MFA in Photography at the University of New Mexico.
In my studio practice I am interested in material process and the formation of identity. My work employs a variety of material techniques, blending digital imaging, drawing, and monumental tapestries woven on a computerized loom. Though my work is often grounded in imagery from the history of painting and photography, I am equally inspired by contemporary cultural artifacts such as music videos and animated sitcoms. My work often balances on a tightrope between two opposing cliffs: the serious and the silly, the sacred and the profane, the awful and the awesome. I am most interested in the slippage that occurs between approaches and how such fluidity challenges processes of identification.
November 10th – 24th, 2017
Opening Reception: Friday, November 10th, 6-9pm
In an exhibition of interdisciplinary works, Eugene Ellenberg explores human limitations and the exquisite nature of failure. Communal phrases of promise and codes of distress coexist and contrast the artist’s own fractured faith and embrace of doubt. In a series of photographs, Ellenberg contends with self-conscious rituals in moments of reverence by exposing each sheet of film for as long as he held his breath. Accompanying installations repurpose industrial materials, inviting the visitor to engage with their own presence and sensorial experience in the space.
Exceptional Visual Artist Scholar Series
We Appreciate Your Progress, new works by Eugene Ellenberg is one of two exhibitions in the 2017 that is part of Sanitary Tortilla Factory’s Exceptional Visual Artist Scholar Series. The Exceptional Visual Artist Scholar Series offers professional space for the culminating exhibition that defines the student’s launch into their profession as an artist. The series hopes to underscore exceptional artists attending regional institutions while highlighting Albuquerque’s historic connection to contemporary art practice.
About the Artist
Eugene Ellenberg is an interdisciplinary artist working in Albuquerque, NM. His work has been included in group exhibitions at Harry Wood Gallery in Tempe, AZ, Lionel Rombach Gallery in Tucson, AZ, Workhouse Arts Center in Lorton, VA, Lee Gallery in Clemson, SC, College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, VA, Colorado Photographic Arts Center in Denver, CO, Clinton Adams Gallery and 516 Arts in Albuquerque, NM. His work has been published online through Ain’t Bad, Lenscratch, Slate Magazine, CNN World and One, One Thousand Southern Photography. He is a recipient of the Howard L. Franks Memorial Fellowship. Originally from South Carolina, he received his BFA in Studio Art from Clemson University. As one of Sanitary Tortilla Factory’s Exceptional Scholars of 2017, We Appreciate Your Progress is his MFA thesis show for the Photography program at the University of New Mexico.
October 6th-November 3rd, 2017
Opening Reception: October 6th, 6-9pm
Curated by art historian, Ray Hernández-Durán, The Alchemical Trace: Transformation and Resilience in Recent Work by LGBTQIA Artists is an exhibition meant to open in conjunction with the 15th annual Southwest Gay Lesbian Film Festival, the largest event of its kind in this region of the country. With a focus on resistance, adaptation, and survival, the exhibition will include recent work by a diverse group of emerging LGBTQIA-identified artists from NYC, Chicago, San Francisco, L.A., Las Vegas, and Albuquerque, who address themes of healing, growth, memory, and persistence in their art. In addition to the exhibition, there will be a lecture series, art film screenings, and an exhibition catalogue that will be free to the public.
feat. Logan Bellew, Justin Favela, Pilar Gallego, Erol Scott Harris II, Earl McBride, Maia Cruz Palileo, Virgo Paraiso, Jami Porter Lara, Tino Rodriguez, Nick Simko, Jason Villegas.
The Alchemical Trace: Transformation and Resilience in Recent Work by LGBTQIA Artists is generously supported by the Fulcrum Fund in partnership with the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.
Friday, September 29th from 6-9pm
The closing of Fathoms and Measures by our current artist in residence Alex Branch.
Artist Alex Branch came to the desert to build a musical boat. What she created was an orchestra. Using found materials, Branch re-purposes broken musical instruments to create pieces that function in new ways. Rebuilding what is broken, she uses pieces from pianos, clocks, cellos and crutches to reinvent music making. And yes, there is a boat.
7pm performance by Bryce Fletcher Hample of REIGHNBEAU and Hedia. Hample will play the sculptural instruments.
The Sanitary Tortilla Factory residency program is generously supported by the Fulcrum Fund in partnership with the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and The FUNd at Albuquerque Community Foundation.
Thursday September 21st, 7-10pm
“As far as PoMo supergroups go, you don’t get much more super than what follows. On Thursday, Sept. 21, Albuquerque alternative art space, the Sanitary Tortilla Factory(401 Second Street SW) welcomes Tears of Silver. In case you wanna know, that’s an awesome ensemble comprised of some of the most kick-ass, legendary, profoundly experimental and influential rockers to ever set foot on planet Earth. Who are Tears of Silver? Ahem. Well. The group includes Jesse Chandler, Jonathan Donahue and Grasshopper, straight outta Mercury Rev. Donahue, readers may recall, did a stint in the Flaming Lips before leaving in 1992 to form Mercury Rev with Sean Thomas Mackowiak (Grasshopper the guitarist!). In addition, Ken Stringfellow, founder of Pacific Northwest forest power poppers The Posies adds salt to the tears. Stringfellow has also gigged as a bona fide member of Big Star (Damn!) and the dude played in the touring version of R.E.M. in the late ’90s and early aughts. The new collective has quickly gained the notice of the rock press, as well as growing adulation from a host of millennials who’ve been exposed to the band through coverage this summer in Diffuser and Brooklyn Vegan. The band and the tour have taken a decidedly unorthodox and underground identity, playing small acoustic shows in alternative spaces and recording an EP that features tunes by Al Cooper, Big Star and Bread. Their 7pm gig in Burque is an all-ages affair; tickets range in price from $20-$100 and are available at eventbrite.com.”