Wednesday, December 27, 2023

Tiny Art Show at The Thimble Gallery

Many thanks to the wonderful, whimsical Thimble Art Gallery for showcasing over a dozen of my bite-sized pen and ink drawings at a solo exhibition this fall! The Thimble Gallery is a thoughtfully curated micro gallery (1:24 scale) featuring the tiny work of artists working in all kinds of media. I love their virtual art shows and the antics of their colorful Playmobil patrons, and I'm so honored they chose to feature my work!

My solo show, Botanicals: Connection and Kinship, is a celebration of the endless threads of reciprocity and belonging woven among all Beings on this beautiful planet we call home. To view the entire collection, visit The Thimble Gallery on Instagram.

All gallery photos are courtesy of the curators at The Thimble Gallery.

My hand for scale!

Monday, November 6, 2023

Pine Needles Artist Residency 2023

This summer, I had the honor of spending two weeks on the St. Croix River as Pine Needles Artist in Resident, where I immersed myself in science and nature and the magic of this special place.

Huge thanks to the St. Croix Watershed Research Station and the Science Museum of Minnesota for this amazing program and for making this experience possible!

For more highlights from my residency, head on over to my Instagram.

A canoe was provided, which meant plenty of time on the river!

Checking out the nearby Franconia Sculpture Park with my little guy, Rusty.

My humble little workspace overlooking the St. Croix River.

Sitting in on an archeological dig near the cabin.

Touring the collections at the Science Museum of Minnesota!

Filling my sketchbook

Little treasures everywhere

The basswood trees bloomed during my stay. The scent was heavenly!

Such an inspiring experience!

Friday, January 13, 2023

Gallery Opening: Desert Reflections

Making art feels good. But it never feels quite "done" until it's up on the wall.

Grateful for the opportunity to show my work at the ZACC in July!

Works by the ZACC’s Laura Grace Barrett Resident Artist Lia Mendez

Blackfoot Communications Gallery, July 2022

Missoula, Montana

In Western culture, deserts are often mischaracterized as "wastelands," devoid of life and value. Yet desert ecosystems sustain a rich tapestry of life, including plants, insects, animals, and of course the Indigenous peoples who have inhabited and stewarded these arid lands since time immemorial. These works celebrate the biodiversity of desert life and remind us of the inherent value of these lands, which are becoming increasingly threatened by human development and environmental degradation; occasionally even by products masquerading as "green" initiatives, such as industrial solar farms. It's an issue that highlights the fact that technology alone cannot solve the environmental challenges of our time. It is up to humanity to collectively reassess and reinvest – practically, emotionally, and spiritually – in our relationship with the living Earth which sustains us.

Monday, January 9, 2023

Printmaking Residency at the ZACC

 In 2022, I was selected for the Laura Grace Barrett Printmaking Residency at the Zootown Arts Community Center (ZACC) in Missoula, Montana. As part of my 4-month residency, I assisted with printmaking workshops at the ZACC's well-equipped studio, learned new skills, and pursued my own printmaking projects.

With access to the ZACC's quality tools and presses, I was able to try my hand at woodblock printing for the first time. After years of working with linoleum, working with wood presented both an interesting challenge and some beautifully crisp lines and textures. 

I loved the look and feel of this new medium so much, I even experimented with turning the carved block into a work of art.

Another first was trying my hand at screen printing. Compared to the labor-intensive process of hand-carving blocks for printing, the immediacy of burning a screen from an inked drawing was a lot of fun.

For this piece, I traced mushroom straight from my sketchbook.

I think my favorite application of this medium was printing on clothing. Below you can see how the shroomies turned out printed on a black cotton tee (now one of my favorites shirts). 

Thank you to the ZACC staff and the wonderful team in the print studio for having me! Everyone's warmth and expertise made this residency an incredibly rewarding experience.