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Art that Makes You Talk

We provide a platform for emerging artists to explore contemporary art practices, pushing both artists and the audience to engage in an experience beyond the traditional gallery setting.

2024 Exhibition Calendar

Plan your visit by reviewing our amazing exhibition lineup for this year.

Monument Valley

COMING SOON

Monument Valley is a celebration of installation art, work that demands your attention as you share space with it. Installation art is commonly characterized as large-scale site-transforming art and Monument Valley seeks to explore the spectrum of what this can look like in practice. Large works crowd the space, surrounding you, putting you in your valley of artwork to look at and explore.

The works in this exhibition have been provided by a wide range of artists who conceptualize installation art in their unique way, pushing the boundaries of what installation art can materialize as. Ranging from large-scale paintings to twisting forms made out of tape, Monument Valley invites you to step into the stories of each installation.

Exploration on how art interacts with space and the storytelling power of presence.” -Laura Ruiz, curator

Champagne & Chocolate

The Champagne & Chocolate Member Showcase will feature 46 artists with more than 100 works being displayed. The artwork in this exhibition displays the diversity of our member artists in both skill and media, ranging from woodworking to painting.

The Living Arts Exhibition is an invitation to experience the very heartbeats of our colorful legacy. For over five decades, Living Arts has been the canvas for brilliance in Tulsa’s artistic tapestry. Picture the inception of 1969— a consortium of creative souls spanning painting, music, literary arts, cinematography, theater, and sculpture. Living Arts was born, a place for risk-taking and experimentation. Virginia Myers, our founding director, set the tone for our spirit of innovation, which guides us to this day. Through the years, Living Arts blossomed into a haven for growth and adventure. In the 1980s, the gallery hosted luminaries like John Cage and Pauline Oliveros, setting the stage for a future of artistic exploration. In the 1990s, Steve Liggett took the helm, embedding Living Arts in our community’s heart. As we crossed into the 2000s, Living Arts morphed into a platform for emerging artists, sparking conversations through bold statements. We’ve been known to offer “art that makes you talk”—art that resonates with Tulsa’s unique pulse. The 2010s brought a flurry of creativity, birthing staples like the New Genre Arts Festival, Spoken Word Events, Dia de los Muertos Arts Festival, and our beloved Champagne & Chocolate Gala. The year 2020 tested us, but we met the challenge with innovation, embracing new ways to keep our artistic doors open. And now, in this moment of celebration, we mark 55 years of igniting Tulsa’s creative flame. The Living Arts Exhibition captures our very essence—a celebration of brilliance and creativity. Walk with us through this curated journey, where art comes alive, and imagination knows no bounds. You’re invited to join us on this vibrant canvas where brilliance dances with creativity, history blends with the future, and art becomes the bridge that connects us all. – Joe Franco

VC Torneden & Melinda Green Harvey

The Other Side is a large and growing body of photographs documenting the changes occurring along Route 66 over the course of the five years ahead of her centennial in 2026. Although Route 66 has been photographed many times over the decades, the works in The Other Side bring a fresh perspective on the Mother Road by taking a deeper successive five-year look, concentrating on the chronically overlooked miles by primarily bypassing the tourist attractions and instead seeking the quotidian, the overlooked, and the forgotten along America’s highway: the other side of the road.

A collaborative project, The Other Side is being photographed by two artists based on Route 66 states, Melinda Green Harvey of Texas and VC Torneden of Oklahoma. Both photographers shoot in comparable styles and bend toward similar subject matter making their photographs a strong pairing for exhibition. However, each photographer brings their viewpoint to this particular project. VC Torneden has made Route 66 one of the primary subjects of her art for more than a decade, traversing its length and documenting long-forgotten segments. This has given her an encyclopedic knowledge of the locales along 66, an eye for minute detail, and a deep compassion for her subjects. Conversely, Melinda Green Harvey had never before this project traveled Route 66 at length and thus brought fresh eyes to the project. However, her photography frequently pivots around small-town life, especially when towns begin to dry up, giving her a strong affection for things that have been left behind and the questions posed by the detritus. Given the history of Route 66 since its decertification, this perspective made Ms. Green Harvey ideally suited for documenting the modern history of the Mother Road. Indeed, the larger look she took at the locations involved is a strong balance to the fine details predominating many of Ms. Torneden’s images.

Tyler Griese

This collection of work expresses a monumental catalytic feeling within a fleeting mundane moment. I explore tensions between internal and external factors. Color and light play against each other to tell a story of interpersonal relationships, and relationships with the environment, and is emblematic of the collective human experience. These paintings have elements of voyeurism and confrontation as the viewer ruminates through moments of their own lives. I hope the viewer finds a connection through shared emotions and experiences. Decisions made in the creation of the painting construct an allegory of instability and vulnerability within the constructs of a two-dimensional surface.

Justin Ortiz

Building off his previous photo series and thesis exhibition, “The Long Day Ahead” and “Playtime,” respectively, Justin Ortiz presents his first solo exhibition – Trespassing Fantasies. Set in his constructed world of adolescence, decay, and sexuality, Ortiz presents 24 photographs captured in 3 distinct parts to question the idyllic nature of fantasies when put in the context of pain and pleasure. He uses repeated imagery, ambiguous lighting, a horizontal aspect ratio, and a three-part structure to create movement and capture a cinematic quality that guides the viewer through the work.

Through visual references to childhood contrasted with the process of decay, Ortiz opens up a space to analyze how trauma and abuse are recurring in adulthood. How the pain of the past iterates into the future to lurk in the form of pleasure. Fantasies themselves are veiled as an escape from this pain, but here they are shown to be a symbol of it. Ortiz subverts the hedonist view of fantasies as a tool to confront reality and find a tangible space to heal. This is an ongoing project that will have a small run at Shades of Brown Coffee and Art starting November 1st and ending November 30th. For the Living Arts exhibition, Ortiz plans on utilizing the space with the project’s intended large-scale format. Ranging from 8×12” prints up to 40×60” inkjets, Ortiz will tie in his serigraph prints and ceramics to offer a dynamic perspective of this constructed world.

Brandy Green

The Human Condition has been a theme in art that transcends cultures. As discoveries occur about how our bodies function, we can re-examine what it means to be human through a contemporary lens. I wish to present the community with new interpretations of the functions of bodies in an inclusive way by using the natural properties of clay as a metaphor for how our body affects our perceptions through memory.

Jon O

What are ideals worthy of devotion? What are considerations worthy of reflection? Which are experiences worthy of our memories? To whom does a story belong, and who has the right to tell it? Which is more interesting? more inspiring? more engaging? more valuable? more meaningful?

A found photo (discarded? lost?….) vs one viewed in a scrapbook? A 3min 35sec pop song (say, The Beatles, ‘She’s Leaving Home’) vs Beethoven’s 9th Symphony? A haiku vs. Shakespeare’s Macbeth? A hut cobbled together from discarded trash on the edge of the dump vs. Notre Dame? A living room, carelessly existed in vs the same room, the contents of which have been meticulously recreated within a museum setting? A tourist trap souvenir vs Michelangelo’s David? Kinda depends on context, yes/no/maybe…(?) This project, all my projects, deal with questions that inspire me to find out as much as possible about the world I currently inhabit… They may also be questions that can inspire others.

Fahimeh Foudazi

At a time when humanity is being torn apart by group and individual differences, by global dissension and turmoil, this project honors the transcendence of self by seeking the ultimate unity that implies a transcendence of identity. Each work reflects the physical realization of my attempt toward an underlying solution to my chaotic existence. The space created through this project aims to go beyond the immediacy of physical perception and in doing so allows for new internal perceptions to come into existence.

Living

COMING SOON

Beyond the Whitewash is a collection of mixed media works by a racially mixed
group of artists who bring their unique perspectives to the complex,
interconnected, and nuanced issue of racism. The exhibition allows us to be
present with others while looking directly at the systems and structures of power
that have created and maintained oppressive systems of inequality. A platform
where diverse voices can be heard and represented together is a powerful
reminder that we are all connected. Our collective stories can be used to create
connection, understanding, and solidarity.

This exhibition is made possible by the ongoing support of the Tulsa Artist
Fellowship and OVAC Thrive Grants Program in partnership with the Andy
Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.

Oh, Tulsa! Biennial

Oh, Tulsa! is Living Arts’ biennial that celebrates the unique talents that the Tulsa arts community has to offer and encourages the community to come together to share what they love about Tulsa. This exhibition is about Tulsa, for Tulsa, and by Tulsa!

Dia de los Muertos Arts Festival & Exhibition

COMING SOON

The annual Día de Los Muertos Arts Festival is one way that we shine a light on the cultures and traditions of our region. Historically, this festival is one of the largest multicultural festivals to happen in the Tulsa Arts District, impacting more than 10,000 people.

an impressive 250,000 social media impressions. We are projecting to impact more than that this year through virtual content which will allow participants near and far to engage with this beautiful cultural event.

Faith Green

COMING SOON
Living Arts of Tulsa will be hosting a Drawing Rally for our December First Friday. Artists will be drawing 5-7 drawings in that time frame and participants in the gallery and online will have an opportunity to bid on the pieces for a short period of time. After that time frame is up, the pieces will then go on sale!

Lauren Hensen

Diva: a self-important person who is temperamental and difficult to please (typically used of a woman). “she is much more the dedicated maverick than the petulant diva” As women, we often blame the world for putting us in a box. 

Maybe ‘they’ do because of all of these subtle cultural messages that tell us we can’t. Or what if it’s us subconsciously listening to these things and putting ourselves in that box? Who are the women, the Divas, that ignored the barriers and showed up anyway? What is their story? How did they do it? Did people recognize their genius while they existed or only after they had passed? The Diva series is to showcase all the powerful women who were told no and still succeeded, and had to fight for their right to share their sparkle (aka genius) with the world. Who broke through one ceiling so the next diva could break through? May we see them, may we learn from them, and may we strive to be them.