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Gracie Rhyne

Photograph of Grace Rhyne by Jerold Schnauss.

Artist, Illustrator, 
mover & Shaker

As a multifaceted artist, the scope of my work ranges wildly in creative direction. As of late my main focus is oil painting. Much of my work explores recycled materials and unconventional painting substrates. I like to pick things up. Examine them. Keep them out of the landfill. I have recently received a BFA in Illustration & Design from the University of Arizona. 

 

My ultimate goal is to create work that is accessible to all. Everyone deserves art and creativity in their world. Moreover, the exploration of kitsch, tack, trash, and colors should be welcomed. Why not weird? Why not extra? Art is for everyone. It’s not all pristine white gallery walls here, ya’ll. Keeping affordability in mind is fundamental to my practice, as it has been a necessity to navigate the world by limited means in my own experience.  I’m still working out this balance. I believe at my core everyone should have access to to art. I acknowledge this privileged perspective. Art has always been fundamental to my well-being and living reality. There will be no gatekeeping here. No energy that doesn’t promote inclusion, diversity, and justice. More on that below.

Photograph of Grace Rhyne by Larry Hanelin

DANCE.

I have an extensive background in dance. Movement quality and attention to detail greatly impact my visual world. Dance gave me a voracious work ethic which has prepared me for a life built on independent means. Can life just have a few more musical dance break moments?  Though I am not currently teaching ballet or modern dance, it is a fundamental part of my existence. Most recently I have been a performer with Esperanza Dance Project for 7 seasons. Here are some stills from my most recent choreography, “Grasping the Infinite” Debuted June 2022. Photography by TruRoyalty Images.

 

NONPROFIT ARTS SECTOR.

I served as the Executive Director of a small grassroots nonprofit, WomanKraft Art Center for 8 years. Going into the arts sector from a place of genuine interest and let’s be honest, some naivety, allowed me to spend years learning about arts administration from a hands-on approach. I learned what it takes to keep an art center alive. I found that it takes astronomically devoted individuals, boundless energy and creativity, and a scrappy DIY ethic. Working for small arts organizations and exploring recycled materials, gathering education from life, and collecting words of wisdom from the mentors I have known, has greatly shaped my life.  I stepped down from my second position in directorship with Esperanza Dance Project after 4 years of devoted arts administration to fully pursue visual art in the form of a college education. Art making is my primary goal and reality. 

 

Abolish Ice! Animated Gif of Folklorico Dancer

SOCIAL JUSTICE.

Being the director for an art centered organization was an incredible way to plunge into the world of art making, and I took the opportunity to explore different media quite seriously. Creating artwork and community have been endeavors I have been working towards for years with organizations as well as with individuals. Feeling strongly about things is my middle name. I am an advocate for survivors of childhood sexual violence. The current DEVASTATION on female rights and bodily autonomy haunts me. I will use my voice and life to work for a better reality. Abuse, discrimination of any kind, racism and sexism will not be tolerated. If you need resources for surviving sexual violence, support for finding access to women’s healthcare, or how to have some difficult conversations, reach out to me. My contact info is all over this website. Let’s make this a world we are proud of.  

SCHOOL.

In 2023 I received a Bachelor's of Fine Arts in Studio Arts with an emphasis in Illustration, Design & Animation from the University of Arizona.

Summa Cum Laude.

Awards:

2022-2023: Sandy Truett Memorial Scholarship

2022: Sadker Undergraduate Studio Art Award

2021, 2022, 2023: University of Arizona Dean’s List with Distinction & Academic Year Highest Academic Distinction

2020: University of Arizona Dean’s List with Distinction

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