Featured Artist: CJ Infantino

From Engineering to Photography

How does an network engineer suddenly become obsessed with photography? Well, for as long as I can remember I have been fascinated with visual media. But my love affair with photography really picked up in 2015.

The tragedy that pushed me to my end

In 2015 my wife was diagnosed with stage four metastatic breast cancer. At that time we were living in California with our three young children and away from our family.

Me and depression go way back, but that year threw me into a wake of emotions I wasn’t sure I’d be able to escape.

Moving back to NY and being challenged by my friend

After my wife’s initial treatment, we moved back to Rochester. We realized we needed the support of our families. And our kids needed the best chance at having a stable home life.

Shortly after we returned – like all good relationships go – my friend Chris Mason and I picked things up right where we left off.

He was expanding his design business into photography. So of course, we would talk at length about it. Then one day he challenged me to pick up a camera.

We spent many late nights roaming the cold streets of Downtown Rochester. It was during those times that I began to realize how extremely cathartic photography was for me.

I began sharing my images with friends and family and it wasn’t long before I felt the pull to share more broadly.

Home is where my camera is

I am the epitome of an introvert. I’d stay in my house for days or weeks if I could.

But there is something special about getting behind the camera. It’s my safe zone. A place where I can observe the world around me.

I shoot fine art photography. I am driven to capture humanity.

I am greatly inspired by Brooke Shaden’s and Zhang Jinga’s work. More and more, my art is trending in that direction.

The voice that never leaves me. My greatest inspiration.

The biggest inspiration in my life was my grandma. She was the one person who always believed in me.

No matter what.

She is the one person whose words will remain with me forever. In my darkest and brightest moments, her voice is the first thing I hear.

Transparency is everything.

I believe the world and our communities would be greater if we were more transparent. We all struggle, yet we are quick to hide it.

At the end of the day, all we have is each other. If we could practice being open and honest, we just might find the help we so desperately need.

Humans are incredible and are worth documenting

Capturing people and sharing my struggles are my passions. They’re what drive me to push further.

I want the world to be better for my kids. I want them to grow up where people are real and connected; where it’s commonplace to share our stories and fears with one another.

So that’s the world I am trying to build. One photo at a time.

P.S. I’m really into Korean skincare. It’s not uncommon to see me relaxing with a sheet mask on.

Featured Artist: Michael Osadciw

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I never thought I’d have a booth at an art show. I never really considered myself an artist. I never went to school for it, and never really made a living at it either. Sure, I’m always making things and being creative all the time, at work and at home, but to me what I did didn’t fit into the modern idea of an “artist.” No artist statements here. However being around more artists the past few years, including working with Artist Row’s very own Sarah Kirchoff, helped me realize I was an artist and encouraged me to get my work out in front of people.

Up until recently I rarely ever created anything just for fun. It always had to have a purpose: someone was paying me to draw, or I wanted an Adirondack Chair but was too cheap to buy a good one so I guess I better learn to build one. The creative process has always been enjoyable, and allowed me to exercise the creative bug that’s been itching inside me since I was little. I’ve always had time to scratch that itch until becoming a dad a few years ago. So exhibiting at Artist Row helps me get connected to that creative feeling again by forcing me to try some things out with a deadline.

My day job is as a graphic designer at the University of Rochester, but my illustration work tends to be for science-fiction: currently for a sci-fi roleplaying game that I own and try to make new stuff for, and previously lots of freelance work for other game companies. Due to the fact that most of my work for these games needed to be printed in black and white I’ve become most experienced in pen and ink, ink wash, and pencil. Only now am I getting more into color and also moving to a lot of digital tools to get things accomplished. I’ve also been learning to build furniture as well; mostly outdoors stuff so my fit and finish can still be a bit rough while I gain experience. And also drawing obscure Star Wars characters on my son’s lunch bags.

So you’ll see the breadth of my interests represented at my booth. I’ll have some illustration prints, a wood craft, and some books I’ve published. Plus I’ll be bringing a book with a sampling of a lot of my work from over the years. I’ve never put anything together like that before so I’d love it if you’d stop by and take a look (A67). You can be honest; I think I can take it by now.

Featured Artist: Karen Soldwisch

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Milady Linden actually was born when I was an imaginative child. Playing dress up with my mother’s jewelry and clothing was fascinating and while my mom was artistic as a seamstress, my creative sprit did not include a needle and thread!

repurposed necklaces copy.jpgAs a teen, I dabbled in simple jewelry design and later found myself drawn to antiques and especially enamored by older jewels.  I became a passionate collector of vintage, seeking out the history and styles of each era.

My first true love was the locket and while I found gorgeous pieces, I also discovered sad little boxes of orphaned pieces; trinkets, baubles and most charming what-nots. They beckoned to come home and I recognized their beauty. I adore timeworn objects obviously loved and the history they hold!

These odd parts of vintage jewelry; medals, rosaries and ornaments stimulated the dress up child in me and fueled creativity. The tidbits of yesteryear unfold into a design and repurposed treasure. A single piece can inspire a design. My head overflows with ideas; my workspace is a chaos of fabulous objects awaiting… pick me!altered salvage bottles with vintage stoppers and clock face copy.jpg

Sentimental objects are layered for a necklace, assembled into a collage, perhaps a bracelet or pair of earrings. I utilize a variety of vintage pieces such as buckles, buttons, chains, charms, cufflinks, lace, lockets, medals, mosaics, religious keepsakes or watch parts; the pieces come together like a puzzle until the look is just right! I am enthusiastically devoted to the thrill of the hunt; you never know what vintage keepsake awaits! And, my passion is dedicated to the dreams of that little girl decked out in her mama’s jewels!  For me it’s a totally a “charmed” life.

Definitely looking forward to Artist Row and meeting you all. My lace angel will show you the way to Milady Linden!

Entertainment: Honey and Vinegar

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Our 2016 entertainment headliners are Honey and Vinegar, a duo made up of Brandon Sheffer (guitar, vocals) and Ben Overmeyer (bass, backup vocals). They’ll bring their unique brand of acoustic jam to the main stage directly following the awards announcement at 1 p.m.

13510921_634424116721762_153102634052946642_nYou might recognize Brandon and Ben from the other band they perform with locally: MoChester, a larger 4-piece rock-reggae driven band that’s a favorite of Rochester crowds. While the Motown groove provided early inspiration for the group, their current sound has a more mainstream flair. Their arsenal of original material stretches across numerous genres, from the pop-flavored anthem “Crackerjack Tattoos”, to the reggae-infused jam “Lost and Found”. We look forward to Brandon and Ben bringing the best of MoChester with them to Artist Row as Honey and Vinegar!

 

LOOK FOR Honey and Vinegar FROM 1:15 – 2 p.m. ON THE ARTIST ROW MAIN STAGE.

Entertainment: John Mossey

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John Mossey is a multi-instrument musician based in Rochester, NY with over 15 years of experience in the entertainment industry.

This year, he’ll once again bring his signature flair and musical artistry to Artist Row as both a performer and the show’s Master of Ceremonies. He’ll be on the main stage throughout the day making announcements and introducing our musicians, as well as accompanying himself on piano and guitar to a wide range of originals and popular hits: back to the sounds of the 50’s with Elvis and Sam Cooke, to the 60’s with The Beatles and Bob Dylan, the 70’s with Billy Joel and Paul Simon, all the way up to your favorite current hits. Also watch for some new original tunes!

John’s lent his talents to Artist Row as a volunteer for the past two years. Under his leadership, the entertainment for the show has been stellar: He scouts and arranges all of the acts throughout the day, and serves as a point-person at the show to greet and help each act set up. He’s sure to engage our Artist Row audience again this year with his spirited and energetic stage presence!

LOOK FOR John Mossey FROM 10:15 – 11 A.M. ON THE ARTIST ROW MAIN STAGE.

Entertainment: Barry’s Crossing

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The celtic duo Barry’s Crossing is composed of talented husband and wife team Sean Rosenberry (vocals, fiddle, bodhran, mandolin, whistle, percussion) and Sarah King (vocals, keyboard, accordion, percussion). They’re excited to present the next generation of traditional Irish music to this year’s Artist Row audience!

Barry’s Crossing started playing at Barry’s Old School Irish in Webster, a small Irish pub that had just opened, and quickly became a fixture there, playing every Friday evening. They rapidly built a small, but loyal, following of fans and began calling themselves Barry’s Crossing to pay homage to the Irish pub that gave them their start.

You can learn more about Barry’s Crossing at their website: http://barryscrossing.com

Look for Barry’s Crossing from 2 – 2:45 p.m. on the Artist Row Main Stage.

Featured Artist: Nicole Reddington

N in Studio

sketchbookI am a Landscape Architect by day and an Artist by heart. I am lucky that, in my line of work, I spend a lot of time outside around natural materials – it’s where I collect a lot of inspiration for my artwork. I’m drawn to interesting patterns, textures, organic forms, color combinations, etc. I jot them down “shorthand” – sometimes in a sketchbook or whatever scrap of paper I have on hand. I think of my sketchbooks as an ‘ingredients list’ that I will later use to ‘cook’ with in a painting. I also enjoy trail running and inevitably end up picking up bits of nature such as branches, leaves, seed pods, etc. These collections are kept around my painting space to help ignite creativity and sometimes make their way into a collage.

Encaustic collageI’m still developing – and learning what my “process” is. I suspect (and hope) that it will always be evolving. Presently, I’ve been working on painting “intuitively” to create abstract pieces that are informed by a combination of my inspiration gatherings and what happens with the paint in the moment. I find it a wonderful, sometimes frustrating, challenge to bring those two things together. I work in many layers of acrylic paint and have more than one canvas going at a time – to allow time for layers to dry and/or to move on if I’m feeling stuck. In winter months (when it’s cold in my studio) I work with Encaustics – using layers of melted wax on wood boards to create abstract collages. My long-term goal as an artist is to be able to evoke that spark I feel when I’m inspired into a painting of my own authentic style – somewhere between literal and abstract.

winter palette abstractAs a wife and mother I find time to be my biggest challenge, but I wouldn’t change a thing. I keep our kitchen table stocked with art supplies and work it in whenever I can – even if it’s just a ten minute sketch – keeping it present keeps my momentum going. It also helps to have a supportive husband who understands that being creative is a vital part of me and when my daughters see me giving time to such a personal endeavor as making art – I feel the payoff is priceless!

 

 

Featured Artist: Cordell Cordaro

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Cordell Cordaro


A little bit about me-
I am a full-time Rochester Artist and the founder of local art magazine Art House Press. My swanky portraits of the bourgeois lifestyle hang in restaurants, galleries and bars across this city and beyond. I used to lug bags around for hours and hours as a skycap. I could see all these people getting on planes and flying off to other places, and I remember thinking that one day I’ll be the one taking the plane and flying off somewhere. That’s when I knew I had to make a something happen. I knew I was meant to make art, it was just a matter of doing it! Ten years later I continue to do what I love. As stated by one of Art House Press’s amazing writers Pam Emigh Murphy, “Cordell’s women, at once beautiful and shocking, reveal a campaign against the standardization of beauty given to us by the ancient Greeks. Cordell is a modernist. Stylistically he is a decorative and thematically expressionist artist. His women (and men) self-sufficiently and unself-consciously inhabit a world of their own—an unconscious striving that motivates many of us—but their exaggerated and sometimes distorted depiction ruptures our classical notions of beauty. Beneath their elegant, civilized veneer, you will find that his subjects, whether male or female, deliberately display their interior longings, their idiosyncrasies that would otherwise be squashed by social decorum. They teach us that people can’t be viewed only in terms of idyllic outward appearances.”

Where do you find inspiration? When I see a blank canvas, I think to myself ‘ok, let’s do this.’ The abstract meanings that are inside come out on the canvas, the inner emotion, the passion for life, it all comes out on the canvas. Making a living as an artist also inspires me. We have this weird structure where the gallery owners are making money by hustling out the artists. Big-name galleries control the art market by endorsing selected artists. It’s a weird game. Yet, entrepreneurs, young and old, all over Rochester are opening their own independent business instead of signing up with the big companies. If artists took the same individual approach, they could compete with the galleries. When you go the gallery route, you’re giving someone else the reigns to your career. It’s empowering taking control of your life.IMG_4201

What is your process? My work includes paintings, ink drawings, and combinations of the two. What interests me is to create beautiful art. It takes patience and endurance, mastering my craft and daily jumping into the unknown. It’s this commitment that makes astonishing things happen. As famed poet-philosopher Johann Goethe counsels, “Boldness has genius, magic, and power in it. Whatever you can do or dream you can do, begin it. Begin it now.”

What are challenges you run into? The challenge is finding out who we really are and becoming that person and committing ourselves to the journey.

Celebrating the Return of Summit’s Community Canvas!

 

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Summit’s 2015 Community Canvas in-process

The Summit Federal Credit Union invites the public to contribute to a Community Canvas at Artist Row Sunday September 18th from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the City of Rochester Public Market. The Summit Federal Credit Union is the primary sponsor of Artist Row, a juried art show, sale and event featuring over 200 artists as well as musical entertainment and food trucks. Admission to Artist Row is free.

The Summit’s Community Canvas starts as merely a blank canvas on an easel, but anyone attending Artist Row who wishes to paint something on it may do so. The resulting art piece, which shows the collaborative contributions of all those who lent a creative hand, will be displayed at The Summit’s Main/Winton branch in the weeks after Artist Row.

“As a locally-grown credit union, we are proud to support the City of Rochester Public Market and all it provides our community,” said Twanda Christensen, Marketing Manager for The Summit. “Artist Row gives us a chance to celebrate local creativity, and our Community Canvas is a fun way for people to get into the spirit of this lively event.”

Since 2012, The Summit Federal Credit Union has been a leading supporter of the City of Rochester Public Market, including the Monthly Healthy Tasting, Artist Row and the Market Trolley. 2016 is the 12th Annual Artist Row, planned each year by the Friends of the Rochester Public Market. Besides the support of The Summit Federal Credit Union, Artist Row receives additional support from the City of Rochester and other local sponsors.

 About The Summit Federal Credit Union

Founded in 1941, The Summit Federal Credit Union is a not-for-profit, member-owned, full-service financial cooperative. With approximately $800 million in assets, The Summit has over 230 employees and provides a full range of affordable financial products and services to approximately 80,000 active members in Central and Western New York. For more information, visit www.summitfcu.org.

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