Shelley Caldwell's work features a combined practice of mixed media drawing and installation. She is currently seeking her Master of Arts from Minnesota State University, Mankato.
Caldwell received her Associate of Arts degree from Ridgewater College of Hutchinson, MN in 2012 where she studied liberal arts. She earned an art department scholarship and graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Minnesota State University, Mankato in 2015, concentrating on drawing and painting. She was awarded a teaching fellowship for her current pursuit of a Master of Arts degree at MSU Mankato where she continues to focus on installation and drawing. Caldwell has also been featured in various solo exhibitions while regularly participating in juried and group shows. Her work has been featured at venues such as the 410 Project, Mankato; Emy Frentz Gallery, Mankato; Carnegie Art Center, Mankato; The Grand Center for Arts & Culture, New Ulm; Ridgewater College, Hutchinson & Willmar, and others.
An affinity for nature rooted in memories and values serves as the point of departure for my work. The prominence of embellishment, pattern, and repetition found in ordinary objects also plays a strong hand in influencing the work’s aesthetic qualities.
Ideas stem from a specific image or item from personal experience, which is then stylized through the application of pattern and repetition to increase recognition. As with nature, dualities within the work result from a combination of styles and processes; spontaneous mark-making alongside precise control, muted tones in conversation with bright colors of various saturations, and graphic shapes among an abundance of natural references. A variety of media are implemented to produce the sharp, clean lines that are fundamental to achieving the desired aesthetic. Common, repurposed, economically accumulated materials are used as primary surfaces, enriching the work’s dialogue. Not only releasing drawings from the wall and gaining a dimension, installations provide an immersive sensory experience, allowing the audience to move around and within the work, affording both space and time for contemplation.
From natural laws to mundane items, many factors of human existence are casually overlooked despite the control they exert; I am driven by the desire to make apparent that which is disregarded. Through a combined practice of mixed media drawing and installation, these themes converge.