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Winter 2013: Color in Heaven

Featuring the work of Renée LaVerné Rose and Dorian Sylvain

"Color in Heaven," the Spring 2013 exhibit at the Mary-Frances and Bill Veeck Gallery, features the work of Renée LaVerné Rose and Dorian Sylvain.  The show runs from January 24, 2013 until March 31, 2013.

Renée LaVerné Rose
Artist Statement

As a child growing up, I didn’t often see people of color depicted on the walls of religious institutions, in spiritual literature, or in Western religious art. So, as I matured I questioned this religious indoctrination, which was not inclusive of diverse spiritual imagery. I asked myself as a woman and a person of color, how can I embrace any religious institutions, spiritual literature or religious artifacts if there is an apparent disregard for depicting people of color?  As a person of color, religious institutions and symbols played a significant role in shaping the foundation of my community and guiding families and individuals on their spiritual journeys. I believe God is infinite universal energy that embraces diverse spiritual communities.

This name, “Color in Heaven,” was selected for this particular body of works because the audience would immediately have some frame of reference to the subject of religion and people of color.

My mission and desire is to build bridges across the divides in our nation and globe at large that too often isolate people and lessen their humanity, productivity and well-being. I was motived to create a body of work that would nurture the right climate were the audience can expand their spiritual conscience and embrace diverse spiritual concepts and beliefs.  

My “Color in Heaven” collection is the first iteration and a peek into a lengthy series of works that will reveal my spiritual awakening, consciousness and life-time spiritual journey.

Dorian Sylvain

Dorian Sylvain is an educator, scenic designer and muralist who has spent the last three decades working as a successful visual artist. Known internationally for her unique use of color and precise craftsmanship, she has collaborated with many cultural and educational institutions;  Chicago Public Arts Group, Chicago Historical Society, Chicago Children’s Museum, Boy’s and Girl’s Clubs of America and Gallery 37, to name a few.  In 2005 Sylvain was invited to join a group of Chicago artists to create an on-site painting as a part of the Chicago Now Project at the Bordeaux Museum of Modern Art in France.

Sylvain has also exhibited in prestigious galleries throughout the U.S. from Chicago, New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Detroit. Additionally, she is an avid advocate for art in public spaces and is currently completing two exterior projects in the Woodlawn neighborhood. To that end, Sylvain has developed several successful art programs designed to inspire and nurture the talent of young artists. “It is imperative that art remains integral to natural spaces and available to children and communities,” Ms. Sylvain says.

As a decorative artist, Sylvain employs this same aesthetic when designing and painting residential spaces.  As a master faux finisher and muralist, she has enhanced many elite homes throughout the Midwest and East Coast. She employs many painting techniques that come from her foundation as a studio artist. For the past few decades, Sylvain has been designing and hand cutting an extensive series of stencils used in her fine arts studio work. “Stencils give me the ability to repeat patterns and designs that create visually exciting layers,” Sylvain says. “I love being in the studio playing with colors and patterns; the studio is where my roots are.”