Dana L. Depew, grew up in a large family on a farm in rural Medina, Ohio. At an early age, he was fascinated by the intricacies of how things worked. He began taking things apart and attempted to put them back together for curiosity’s sake. Dana was formally educated in the arts at Kent State University with a concentration in sculpture. His current work focuses heavily on the usage of found objects and resurrecting discarded materials into wholly new vibrant works. Dana opened Asterisk Gallery in Tremont in 2001. For ten years (the Gallery closed in late 2010), Asterisk was as an exhibition space that gave much needed opportunities to emerging regional artists. Inspired by his childhood fascination with lights, he began disassembling and reassembling antique lamps and chandeliers. He was curious about the structure and assemblage, but even more so, mesmerized by the way various colors, shades and brightness of the bulbs created various sensory experiences for the viewer. This experimentation led to smaller-scale sculptural work with lights, and that process evolved into my recent large-scale illuminated public art pieces. As well as exhibiting his work in exhibitions nationally, Dana is tireless in promoting the arts by curating exhibitions, judging art competitions and serving on the board of directors of several arts and cultural organizations.
Ewuresi Archer is an artist born in Burlington, Vermont to Ghanaian parents but identifies as a Ghanaian because she grew up there. She is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Painting at the Cleveland Institute of Art. She utilizes fluorescent colors and patterns in her work to celebrate Ghanaian culture; The parts of it that are deemed to be nothing special. Ghana is a country that was colonized by the British and only gained its independence in 1957. The damage had already been done. Our identity has been so looked down upon to the extent that that is what is considered “normal”. Archer paints everyday activities such as pounding fufu, braiding your hair, getting a haircut, etc. along with depicting images of foods that are important to her culture, to put these normal activities on a pedestal. With her use of vibrant colors and different mark makings, she presents paintings that allow everything about what is depicted to be appreciated. Archers work has been shown in group exhibitions: “Waking Dream” at River House Arts in Toledo, OH, “Snickers That Turn to Livable Joy” at the Cleveland Institute of Art in Cleveland, OH, and “I Am My Best Work”, at The Painting Center in New York, NY. Most recently, she co-curated a two-person exhibition “Cut From The Same Cloth” at Kaiser Gallery in the Tremont neighborhood of Cleveland, OH.
Hector Castellanos-Lara, was born in Guatemala City, his early influences included his father, a well-known commercial painter especially in political murals from 1950s through the 1970s. Castellanos-Lara’s mother, who drew inspiration from the folk art of Guatemala as a dressmaker, also had a major impact on him. From this enchanted beginning an environment of art and joy, Hector’s work flows today. In Long Island, New York, during the 1980s he developed his talents as a commercial designer working for El Greco Footwear, Inc. At the same time, Hector began to explore the fascinating world of Fine Arts. Now as a resident of Cleveland Ohio since 1990, Hector Castellanos-Lara has had numerous exhibitions and workshops in the Cleveland Museum of Art, Playhouse Square Foundation–Education Department, Outreach Programs Young Audiences, Beck Center for the Arts, Immigrant Worker Project, International Community Council, The ArtHouse, International House of Blues Foundation, MetroHealth System, Broadway School of Music and the Arts, the Cleveland Public Theatre, Domestic Violence & Child Advocacy Center-Latinas, and Hispanic Alliance. Major art festivals and installations include Parade the Circle, Ingenuity, FireFish, BriteWinter, and WinterTide. He has worked with countless schools and universities during the last two decades. As a community lead, artist and organizer Héctor works with diverse populations to cross borders – both real and imagined, he is also the co-founder of ALU (Artistas Latinos Unidos), the Artistic Director of Día de Muertos Ohio (Day of the Dead), and is an active member of the Hildebrandt Artist Collective.