Meet the Artists

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Many people know that the Youngstown Cultural Arts Center houses groundbreaking arts programming and is a widely recognized model for comprehensive and integrated community engagement.  The main floor is home to several community-based nonprofits such as Nature Consortium, Arts Corps, and The Service Board; and additional artists and organizations use the facilities for classes, workshops, performances, and exhibits.

What many people don’t realize is that the upper three floors of the building make up the Cooper Studios: 36 live-work spaces for low-income artists of all disciplines.  The Youngstown Open House on Sept. 21st offers a rare opportunity for the public to tour these studios and get a sneak peek into the world of the working artist.

Here’s a look at a couple of the talented residents that will open their studios for touring:

Barbara Fugate holds a BFA in Painting/Drawing/Printmaking from Western Kentucky University and an MFA in Painting from Miami University of Ohio.  She has had recent solo exhibitions at the Urban Light Studio, Barbara Fugate workingSteele Gallery, and the Mahler Fine Art Gallery, and her paintings and drawings have been featured in group exhibitions at the Sisko Gallery, Ballard Works, Washington State Convention & Trade Center, and Gallery by the Bay, among others. Barbara has been a contributing artist for several publications, has lectured at conferences and universities, and offers painting workshops to the local community.  Visit her website and blog to view her portfolio of work and for information on upcoming painting workshops she will be teaching at Youngstown.

Sean Gallagher is a King Island Inupiat whose work is heavily inspired by his heritage.  He specializes in replicas of skin boats from the 17th-19th centuries, and makes his own Sean gallagher workingcarving tools for building Umiaks, Qayaqs, traditional masks, and paddle carving.  Sean has conducted presentations and workshops at the Seattle Burke Museum, SOIL, Oregon College of Art and Craft, the Warm Springs Indian Reservation, and Edinburgh University, among others.  He has apprenticed with master carvers Larry Ahvakana and Takioirongi Smith, the Northwest Inupiat Dancers, Evergreen Longhouse and Evergreen State College, where he was also the recipient of the 2012 Native Artist Development Grant.  Learn more about Sean and his work on his Facebook page.

Check back for spotlights on more of our talented Cooper residents, and be sure to come by the Youngstown Open House on Sept. 21st, 1-6pm, to meet the artists and get a behind-the-scenes look into their live-work studios!