Andreas Salzman’s art has been showcased nationally and internationally.
Being showcased internationally was a “highlight of his art career and one of the crazier things he’s ever done,” Salzman said.
He said he was nervous as he shipped his art across seas and wondered if it was a scam, but it turned out to be a very successful show. The show was curated by Artitec, an italian art company. Salzman’s art was displayed in Rome and Barcelona and he did an academic lecture in front of the statue of David, arguing that the work was appropriate.
The show was so successful that Salzman and his wife, Jennifer, have planned their own show in capital cities in Europe in the summer of 2017. They have booked shows in London and Paris.
“This is just the beginning,” Salzman said.
Jennifer and Andreas are both art professors at Lane Community College. They are currently displaying mixed media art in the Pence Gallery at Central Oregon Community College. The two have been together since they met at the University of Wisconsin, Marathon Campus (UWMC) in a drawing class. Andreas was bouncer at the time.
He had his head kicked in and Jennifer asked, “What happened to you?” They have been together ever since.
They moved to Twin Cities, Minnesota in 1989 to attend grad school with their three daughters who were 4 years, 2 years and 10 months old respectively. They had to schedule out completely because they lived 45 minutes away, across the border in Hudson, Wisconsin and commuted into the city.
“The schedule set a pace for us,” Andreas Salzman said, “[however] I always feel like I am getting behind. Studio guilt will always be an issue, but Jennifer helps motivate me.”
The two Salzmans have always worked as a team, but they also allow each other to be individuals. Their art displayed in the gallery attributes to their juxtaposition of artistic style. Jennifer shoots mainly in film and develops her images digitally. Andreas is a builder and a sculptor and works with mainly wood and ceramics.
Jennifer Salzman has three series presented in the show. “Contemplation,” “Line Series” and a series shot at a fairground in Wausau, Wisconsin, where she was born and raised.
Contemplation is a five-image series of her daughter Amelia and has a direct correlation to the five states she finds herself constantly shifting between. Jennifer made this series specifically for the Pence Gallery show. The five states are, “Contemplation,” “Story Already Been Spun,” “Collection of Thoughts,” “Purity of Ideas” and “Dream of Better Days.”
The display of photos in “Line Series” were completed four years after Jennifer was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. She felt that in the fifth year she would be all cleared from the cancer. She decided to print the photos on silk, a process she learned in graduate school that begins with treating the silk so that it may receive the ink from the printed image. As she laid the images out, she thought of a life line. She chose to use a red thread, representing the longevity of life.
Jennifer describes the red thread as the “finite amount of time that moves and travels. It stretches and sometimes get snarled and it is always good to have extra time in the end.” In the last image in the series, her daughter Amelia holds a tuft of yarn to represent extra time.
The last series Jennifer Salzman displayed is of a day at the Fairgrounds with her father. The series initially consisted of 120 photos but has since been distilled to 12.
Jennifer Salzman said the series simply “jumped out.” She included little bits of poetry alongside the images all inspired from her father and family history.
Andreas Salzman’s pieces in the show were all immensely influenced by his family and by music. Andreas described how he was enormously influenced by the recent and sudden death of his father in Dec. 2015. After he heard the news, he turned on the radio to hear Louis Armstrong’s “Kiss to Build a Dream.” Although he describes himself as not much of a Louie fan, the song has been on repeat in his mind ever since.
Andreas said that his father nurtured his taste in music. As a result, Salzman created a piece based off the interior frame of bronze harp in an 1800th-century piano in partial remembrance of his father. Salzman also drew inspiration from his childhood on his grandparents’ Wisconsin farmhouse where redwing blackbirds ran wild. On the edge of the piece, “Harp,” he hand sculpted a redwing blackbird.
Salzman builds most of his projects completely in his head and does a small sketch to ensure that he gets the general composition right before he starts building. Every piece is completely hand built except for the chicken wire on the Harp piece which he said was “completely miserable to work with.”
“I am a kid playing with Legos. Everything is freely built and I break all the rules,” he said.
Danielle Meyers | The Broadside