The Connected Edge: Clay Johnson, Jeff Kahm and Aaron Karp

William Havu Gallery

January 27 - March 11, 2017

  • Opening Reception: Friday, January 27th 6 - 9 pm
  • Also featuring Philabaum Glass
Clay Johnson was born and raised in Durham, NC, where he studied art and art history at Duke University, receiving a B.A. degree in 1985. He then worked for several years as assistant to painter Robert Natkin in Connecticut and New York City. He began exhibiting paintings in 1998, mostly in New York, San Francisco, and Washington DC. After several years of painting and exhibiting, followed by a hiatus of sorts, he has recently returned to painting and his work can be seen at Elins Eagles-Smith Gallery in San Francisco and William Havu Gallery in Denver. Clay currently lives and works in Laramie, Wyoming.

William Havu Gallery
1040 Cherokee Street
Denver CO 80204


Jeff Kahm, Plains Cree, born in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada attended the Institute of American Indian Arts in 1990 to study painting and photography and soon after was awarded a painting scholarship to attend the Kansas City Art Institute and earning a BFA in 1994. He continued graduate studies at the University of Alberta earning an MFA in painting in 1997.

In 2002, Jeff returned to New Mexico, a land that he has grown to love and where he now calls home. He became a permanent resident in 2003 and soon began teaching at the Institute of American Indian Arts as a visiting faculty member. Today he is an associate professor at IAIA where he teaches studio art courses at the intermediate and advanced levels.

His recent solo exhibitions at the Museum of Contemporary Native Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico (2012) and at Urban Shaman Contemporary Aboriginal Art in Winnipeg, Manitoba (2013) highlighted his most recent work - a striking series of small works on paper and panels and an impressive collection of large scale paintings on canvas - work he describes as 'rooted in Indigenous abstraction and Modernist aesthetics'. His work continues to reach a wider audience through various invitational and group shows nationally and internationally.

With a body of work spanning over 40 years, Albuquerque artist Aaron Karp has exhibited works in galleries and museums throughout the United States, including the prestigious Guggenheim Museum. He is well known for his distinctive style of painting, which utilizes various systems of taping to develop fractured fields of color and space. His works, with their complex layers of intricate geometric forms and vibrant color, invite viewers to lose themselves in the depths of Aaron's vision.

"Layering itself, I believe, makes up the central metaphor in my work - both literally and figuratively. The process involved in making the paintings is intimately connected to their meaning. The work is about concealing and revealing. It is about the fracturing of color and space, about looking at and into something to extract information and meaning."

Arizona glass artist Tom Philabaum studied with Harvey K. Littleton at the University of Wisconsin, earning his MA in glass and ceramics in 1973. He built his own studio soon after in Arizona, where he continues to create through glassblowing, casting, slumping/fusing, and dalle de verre. Philabaum has explored many techniques and created many series of works during his 40-year career in the glass studio, while also maintaining a gallery exhibiting the works of hundreds of his colleagues through the years. He has been a trustee on several boards, founded a school, and contributed to his community through glass arts education and support of nonprofit efforts.


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