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Guest curator: Ali Cavanaugh  St. Louis, MO artist


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About Ali


Ali Cavanaugh was born in St. Louis in 1973 and has worked as a professional artist for 17 years. Her compositions are strong and intuitive, thanks not only to being a wife and mother but also to the variations in her experience—such as hearing loss—that made her adapt to and recreate the world around her.

Cavanaugh was awarded the prestigious Presidential Scholarship from the David Wolcott Kendall Foundation, a four-year, full-tuition merit scholarship. This allowed her to study painting at Kendall College of Art and Design and in 1994 She was accepted into the New York Studio Residency Program in New York City. Cavanaugh earned a BFA with an emphasis in painting in 1995. In 1996, she co-founded the New School Academy of Fine Art in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

She has had 40+ solo and group exhibitions in galleries throughout the U.S. Cavanaugh’s art has been featured in publications such as New American Paintings no.88, American Art Collector, American Artist Watercolor, Watercolor Artist magazine, Southwest Art magazine, International Artist magazine, Art Calendar magazine, and The Daniel Smith Art Supply Catalogue.


Ali's selections


Audrey Kawasaki

Brooklyn, NY

"I have followed Kawasaki’s work for 8 years through her blog. Not only is she prolific, but the thing that impresses me the most is the ability she has to constantly keep her work fresh and cutting-edge. Her paintings never grow tired. She is always evolving as an artist, but her impeccable execution and authenticity remain. In my opinion, this is the sign of a true master."

Brad Kunkle

Brooklyn, NY

"Kunkle proves that less is more with the unbelievable life that he invokes into the figures he paints by using just a few colors on his palette. His combination of gilded surfaces, beautiful yet compelling women, and mysteriously alluring settings make for one masterpiece after another."

Mary Jane Ansell

Brighton, UK

"I would describe Ansell’s paintings as a sort of stylized realism. The eye is at ease when combing over the surface and taking in the detail of her figures. I believe her paintings to be true and real even though she allows just enough of her unique interpretation to remain in the work as to give the viewer a chance to be moved by a new perspective."

Nathan Durfee

Charleston, SC

"I’m always amazed by Durfee’s limitless imagination. Each new group of paintings transports me into another reality. As an artist, he’s got it all; unbelievable technical skills, a unique approach in his application of paint, and his inexhaustible creativity."

Amy Bennett

Brooklyn, NY

"Bennett’s work is simply amazing. When I look at her paintings I believe I’m seeing scenes from a dream; real but the details are fuzzy. She builds tiny dioramas of interior settings and landscapes to use as reference for her paintings. I consider this to be the little stroke of genius that keeps her work curious and fresh."

Check out some other great guest curators


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Liz Devlin

founder of FLUX. Boston

Elisa Carmichael

Editor, tasj magazine

Scott Eagle

Asst. Dir. / Professor ECU

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Dennis Ammann

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Samantha French

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Gavin Worth

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Jason deCaires Taylor

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