Meet 2023 Louisiana Call Juror :: Betsy Lohrer Hall

Every year, to provide the opportunity for Louisiana artists to have their work reviewed by curators from around the country, Antenna Gallery’s Louisiana call for exhibitions hosts a guest juror to choose the exhibition selection. For 2023 year, our juror is Betsy Lohrer Hall based in Long Beach, California.

Betsy Lohrer Hall is a visual artist, curator, and university educator based in Long Beach,
California. She earned her MFA from California State University, Fullerton, and her BA from
Colorado College. She studied art history, literature, architecture, and theatre in London and
Florence, and painting at Parsons in New York City.

Hall’s art is informed by her concern for the environment, social justice, and her studies of
Eastern philosophy. She has a longstanding interest in process and impermanence. This is
expressed in a variety of ways, from delicate, repeated marks of gouache on paper, to her use
of simple, fragile materials such as thread, eggshells, and collected, cast off objects. She makes
works on paper that are a hybrid of collage, painting, and printmaking. Her installations often
have a participatory component.

She has exhibited her work in solo and group shows in the U.S., in Thailand, and in China. Her
commissioned solo project, Flight Paths, showed at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). She
has been awarded an artist residency at the Huntington Beach Art Center, a printmaking
residency at Angels Gate Cultural Center, and two Professional Artist Fellowship grants from the
Arts Council of Long Beach, 2007 and 2022.

As a member of the artist group FLOOD, she curated Here and Now, 2016, at the historic
Packard building, and played a significant curatorial role in the PUMP 2017 multi-sensory art
event. She has been curating for and consulting on soundpedro sound art festivals since 2018.
Also in 2018, Hall founded Flux Art Space to connect emerging and mid-career artists with each
other and with the members of the vibrant communities of Southern California. Under her
direction and curation, Flux encourages cross-cultural and cross-generational dialogue and
celebrates creative expression as an integral part of life. 

Betsy Lohrer Hall has taught at colleges and universities in Southern California for nearly two
decades. Her offerings include studio courses – drawing, painting, life-drawing, and printmaking
– and her current focus: the History of Women Artists and Writing in the Arts at California State
University, Fullerton.
Instagram: @betsy_lohrer_hall and @fluxartspace
October, 2022

2023 Jurors Statement 

A juror’s decisions are informed by a kaleidoscope of considerations: the individual submissions, the venue, the diversity of the artists, the juror’s personal preferences, how the selected works will dialogue with each other, and the time frame of the whole endeavor. When a kaleidoscope shifts even a little bit, the design changes. As I start refining my decisions, some of the artists whose works I consider strong are left out of the final selection. It’s a humbling responsibility. 

Thank you to all of the artists who submitted artwork and writing. Thank you for your interest in Antenna. Your creativity and engagement with the Antenna community are important.

. . . . . 

Simplicity is what stands out among the selected artists—simplicity in the sense that each artists’ work has a quality that is clarified, distilled, nuanced. It’s a powerful simplicity. Each artist finds a way to address truths directly… and with restraint. 

Britt Ransom closely studies our human impacts on the landscape. The work alludes to large-scale environmental distress while incorporating small and subtle phenomena from our daily lives: the buzz of cicadas, the beautiful ravages of bark beetles. The artist uses technology to create the forms, offering an unsettling oscillation between pure nature and fabricated simulation. Closeness and distance coexist. 

In the project Ransom has proposed for Antenna, “The Pilgrimage of Harriet Ransom’s Son,” the artist will examine her familial history and its links to the Civil Rights movement. Through the project she will examine the systems of oppression that perpetuate structural racism and violence. It will be an opportunity for all of us to contemplate our connections to this disturbing part of our past and our present.

Vernell Dunams photos are visual poetry. They focus on humble materials—string, cardboard, clothespins—that are often disregarded and overlooked. The artist places these everyday items in contemplative, sublime compositions. The photos and the artist’s written words speak of the delicate balance and vulnerability of relationships. 

Ryan Leitner’s two-dimensional collage work explores an expansive approach to queerness. The images are abstracted, gestural, quirky. In the artist’s own words, the “creative inquiry is directed toward visualization of queer bodies in open environments, where the body is the maker of its space.”

Kelsey Scult creates a riveting contrast between formal aesthetics and the sewn skin of the color-saturated, desiccated orange peels. The concept driving the work is the tangled intensity of intimate relationship, a bond that is at once compelling, consuming, and potentially destructive. Though the visual expression is subdued, the content is palpable.

Jill Stoll has turned her creative attention to harvesting the chaff of our consumer culture. She collects and uses discarded cardboard to make large scale, exquisitely crafted weavings. The meditative, systematic patterns present us with a calming structure through which we can also contemplate the disquieting wastefulness of our ways. 

Betsy Lohrer Hall

12 Feb 2023

Britt Ransom , “Suspended” – DETAIL IMAGE, Stereolithographic 3D Prints, Brass, Oak, Digital Archive Prints, LED Light, Audio of Cicadas, Contemporary Art Center, New Orleans, 2022

Meet The Artists

2023 Solo Exhibition Recipient: Brittany Ransom

Brittany Ransom

Britt Ransom (she/her) is an artist based between New Orleans, Louisiana, and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She is currently an Associate Professor of Art in Sculpture, Installation, and Site work at Carnegie Mellon University. Her practice and teaching explore conflicts within our shared climate through digital fabrication and installation processes. Ransom is half black, queer, and was was born in 1987 in Lima, Ohio. She received her BFA from The Ohio State University (2008) and her MFA from the University of Illinois at Chicago (2011). Ransom is the recipient of the Hopper Prize, Formlabs Impact Award, Joan Mitchell Center Residency, Los Angeles Clean Tech Incubator Residency, ZERO1 American Arts Incubator, and The Arctic Circle Residency. Her work has been shown most recently at the Contemporary Art Center New Orleans, Honor Fraser (Los Angeles), Royale Projects (Los Angeles), Torrance Art Museum (Torrance, CA), and Schering Stiftung (Transmediale, Berlin).

2023 Group Show Recipients: Kelsey Scult, Ryan Leitner, Vernell Dunams, Jill Stoll 

Kelsey Scult

Kelsey Scult is a New Orleans-based filmmaker and multidisciplinary artist. Films Kelsey has produced have played at Sundance, SXSW, Frameline, Outfest and more. She produced the 2021 Sundance Audience Award-winning feature film “Ma Belle, My Beauty” which opened in over 40 theaters nationwide and was acquired for domestic and international distribution. She is an alumna of the New Orleans Film Society Southern Producers Lab. She was a featured artist in the 2021 and 2022 “Louisiana Contemporary” exhibitions at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, where she was one of the ’21 juror selected Best in Show Artists. She is the Creative Services Co-Manager at the New Orleans Video Access Center (NOVAC). She is a member of The Front Gallery and Collective. Her short film SLICE is currently on the festival circuit.

Kelsey Scult, Detail shot of installation “GRIEVE ME PLEASE”, 2023, Dehydrated orange peels, thread, metal chain, ceramic tub, wooden chairs from the artist’s kitchen

Ryan Leitner

Ryan Leitner is a collage artist, with an artistic inquiry towards the visualization of queer bodies and their lived and cultural heritages. Assembling his works through a layering of painting and photography, his two dimensional pieces on canvas create other worldly body-scapes and atmospheres that are molded and stacked together through his process of photoshop and print transferring. Since receiving his MFA from The Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University, Leitner has been the recipient of grants and fellowships from the The LGBT+ Archives Project of Louisiana, Antenna’s Platform Fund, and The Museum of Fine Arts and has exhibited at The Plumbing Museum, Area Gallery, and Magnum Photo Foundation, and The Front Gallery.

Ryan Leitner, Brick Dust, Archival ink, acrylic, canvas, photo transfer, 2022, 30in x 34in

Vernell Dunams

Originally from New Orleans, LA and currently living in Baton Rouge, LA, Vernell Dunams is a lens-based artist concerned with photographing as a means of social and political preservation. In 2018, Vernell obtained a B.F.A in Studio Arts with concentration in Photography. Following this, Vernell spent two years working abroad in Madrid, Spain, which influences Vernell’s process of creation. Likewise he is concerned with the intersections of identity and the effects brought about by social and political matters. His work makes use of moving image, video, digital photography, and film photography with an emphasis on the latter. Lastly, Vernell is concerned with the creation of interpersonal and introspective relationships that arise by the creation and process of exhibiting images. Often times he is concerned with the relationship that establishes in the process and making of photographs, and how through this process the result is a combination of photographer and artist.

Vernell Dunams, “i find myself victim of a love poem gone wrong”, 2022, 16×16 (image) 16×20 (framed)
C-Print from Medium Format Film

Jill Stoll 

Jill Stoll never met a medium she doesn’t like. She believes in the hand that draws, sketches, paints, collages, weaves, sews, knits, carves, prints, and releases the shutter of a (film) camera. Upon visiting Jill’s studio in Arabi, LA, one notices how her work engages all five senses. She forages for what the world has too much of as a catalyst for her creative work, such as cardboard, plastic bottles, and cat’s claw (uncaria tomentosa). Jill learned to weave as a student of Lina Dean’s at Interlochen Arts Academy her junior year of high school. So powerful was Dean’s teaching, it set a course that still informs how she sees the world. Currently, Jill is engaged in studying the systems of pattern and structure from which handmade baskets are made. Having joined the faculty in 2009, she is a Professor of Practice in Design at Tulane University School of Architecture.

Jill Stoll, Detail Image: “Hello Fresh 2 (Outside/Inside)”, Paper (formerly cardboard boxes), glue