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What can a musician learn from a painter and both become better artists in the process?

Enjoy the following shared conversation as artisans from differing media explore the creative process and fusion of art forms.


Participants include Kipp Normand (Harrison Center of Indianapolis - visual artist), Alicia Zanoni (Harrison Center - mixed media painter), Rick Cobb (Choral Conductor of Choral Artisans & Resonance Initiative Founder), Kate Homan (theater actor, visual artist & freelance writer), and Kyle Ragsdale (Harrison Center - painter & curator)

The Artisans 

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Kyle Ragsdale has been painting full time - working periodically as a decorative painter and stage set designer, and making fine art. He has served as curator for exhibits in Texas and Indiana and currently is curator for the Harrison Center . Ragsdale's work has changed many times - the paint has been thick, thin, shiny and flat. He often delves into decorative floral patterns, landscapes and portraiture, but probably is best known for his mysterious elongated figures. Many times, people featured in his paintings are enjoying the beauty of community, sharing life at picnics or parties. Sometimes, formal, sometimes casual, these signature figures and their often-ambiguous settings leave room for interpretations; like an open-ended novel, relationships and meaning are found in the viewers gaze. 


Alicia Zanoni is a mixed media painter focusing on landscapes and human figures. She is drawn to color and light, always trying to find surprising elements in familiar scenes and, conversely, familiar elements in abstract scenes. She is after a visual language for life -a language which, like words, offers meaning, but unlike words which are bound to definitions, connects with our undefined deeply felt experiences. 

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Kipp Normand has no formal training in art. His grandfather taught him to paint, and his father taught him to build things. He is a scavenger and an obsessive collector, searching streets, alleys, junk stores and abandoned buildings looking for clues to explain the mystery of our world. He finds stories in discarded things: stories about himself and stories about all of us; our cities and our shared history. He first began making assemblage, shadow boxes and collage images as a way to justify his restless collecting. They soon became much more. They are Kipp's way to dig deep into the vast museum of this world and share his finds with anyone who cares. 


Kate Homan is an Indianapolis-based performer, freelance developmental editor and visual artist. Her past performances include Hedwig and the Angry Inch (Zach & Zack); Stuart Little (Indiana Repertory Theatre); Trojan Women (Savage at Last Theatre); Frankenstein (NoExit Performance); and Speedthru, The Wars of the Roses, The Tempest, and The Comedy of Errors (EclecticPond Theatre Company). She has served in a variety of fields through her work as an actor, program coordinator, facilitator, submissions reader, teacher, editor, musician and communications director.

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When was the moment you decided to dedicate your life to art? 

What role do raw materials play in the artisan's work?

What's the balance between discipline and delight when it comes to the creative process?

What's your reaction to the following statement: "Artisans don't desire or seek attention for themselves. If they care to be acknowledged at all, they do so because they want to be considered for the work's sake. In effect they say, "Here...look at this thing, not me. See what I have made -

I am of no consequence."

Do you feel that the arts audience is changing and shrinking amid the bombardment of offers online that change how we assess the value of an experience? 

Who outside your particular medium or discipline has influenced your work as an artisan?

Closing Remarks & John Kennedy on the Arts 

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