Matthew Kramer

By Kristine Hartvigsen Metal sculptor Matthew Kramer, 36, looks every bit the stereotypical blacksmith – burly, strong, and, well, kinda hairy. But look again. When the work gloves come off, those man-hands are sporting some pretty serious nail polish. Some days he goes with a glittery green or dark blue. He also likes lilac and the old stand-by, black. And though he looks somewhat like a bouncer in a biker bar, his buddies back in Milwaukee just... Read More

Design and Process with Clark Ellefson

By Kristine Hartvigsen Clark Ellefson has an idea − but instead of the figurative light bulb hovering over his head, imagine one of the artist’s glowing tin perforated Incredible Hulk lunchboxes instead. Or how about a charming postmodern “Mini Mojo” lamp with and artisanal paper shade. Ellefson is full of ideas, in fact, and you can bet there’s a unique fixture shedding light on every one of them. It’s not unusual to spot Ellefson making... Read More

Women Creating / Creating Women

By Kristine Hartvigsen Three women’s creative cycles will sync up for a new art show coming to Vista Studios Gallery 80808 in April. Titled “Women Creating Women,” the show will bring together the works of painters Kirkland Smith and Bonnie Goldberg with the poetry of Cassie Premo Steele. The title concept, the brainchild of Premo Steele, has a double meaning, with “creating” being both a verb and an adjective. There’s... Read More

Wearable Art

By Kristine Hartvigsen With this article, Jasper introduces an occasional series on wearable art by Columbia-area artisans. This first in the series focuses on two local women who create hand-crafted art jewelry. The stunning, straight-talking redhead who manages the Museum Shop at the Columbia Museum of Art, Bohumila Augustinova is perhaps best known around local art circles as the talented designer who won the Columbia Design League’s annual... Read More

Eileen Blyth and Object Lessons

By Kristine Hartvigsen The police officer took the report with poker-faced professionalism, but Eileen Blyth suspected there might be a few snickers back at the precinct. She had arrived at the artist’s Elmwood Park home responding to a reported robbery. The thieves did not break into Blyth’s house to steal heirloom jewels, but they did make off with priceless items from her yard. Could the officer, or any average person, really comprehend... Read More

Art + Sports = Drè

By Kristine Hartvigsen Like the robust center on a college football team, Drè Lopez can be an intimidating fellow. His bearded, no-nonsense game face belies the thoughtful fine artist at the center of Columbia’s Piensa Art Company, which specializes in distinctive, nonconventional forms of illustration, graphic design, and writing services with a youth-culture bent. Over the past four University of South Carolina football seasons, the popularity... Read More

Lee Ann Kornegay: The Beat Goes On

By Kristine Hartvigsen Try to focus your lens on Lee Ann Kornegay, and you better be able to capture a moving target. One moment the Columbia producer and award-winning documentarian is reading research and sipping wine on her front porch; the next she is hundreds of miles away wailing on a djembe at a mountain-top drum circle or even riding bareback on a sandy beach in Cote d’Ivoire. Those who know Kornegay for her documentary work that has raised... Read More

Fool for Art: David Yaghjian Finds Inspiration in Humble ‘Everyman’ Alter-Ego

By Kristine Hartvigsen Six years ago, David Yaghjian took the adage “dance like no one’s watching” to heart, and he’s been cavorting – devil may care – in his underwear ever since. At 57, Yaghjian created a counterculture alter-ego of sorts that today is becoming increasingly popular in the artist’s “Everyman” series of paintings and sculptures. The impetus came in 2005 when McKissick Museum  solicited works for its annual fundraiser... Read More

Editorial- Issue 1

Dear Friends,  Building a local arts magazine from the ground up must be something akin to building a guest house. You know what you want it to look like, and you hold dear the message you want to convey to your friends – you are welcome here, the door is always open, we want you to feel as if this is a place where you can come to be nurtured, to enjoy yourself, to reflect and grow.  But it would take a fool to try to undertake either endeavor... Read More