STATEMENT Sullivan Smith’s work focuses on the global debate concerning the planet and the role each of our lives, choices, conveniences and privileges play. Each work investigates the tenuous balance between humans and nature through the perceived abundance of natural resources declining at the hand of human kind or the impact of daily conveniences on nature. In the work, Sullivan Smith examines the push and pull between the capacity of humans to control or shift the environment with the potential for unintended consequences. Or to simultaneously reveals and conceals the impact of mass hunting or environmental change on species. The works find their impetus from appropriated cultural sources, be they historical photographs, or news of recourse decline. A quote from noted naturalist, John Muir, is ever-present in the work “When one tugs at a single thing in nature he finds it attached to the rest of the world”.
BIO Emily Sullivan Smith is an Assistant Professor and the Foundations Coordinator at the University of Dayton’s Department of Art and Design. She is also a Sustainability Scholar with the Hanley Sustainability Institute at the University of Dayton. Her studio practice is interdisciplinary including sculpture, fibers and printmaking, focusing on the effects of human behavior on the natural world. Recent exhibitions include; solo exhibition,W O/A NDER at ArtLink Gallery in Fort Wayne, IN, Invitational, Natural Expressions and Duo / Trio at the Riffe Gallery in Columbus, OH, FORM x 4 at Roy G Biv Gallery in Columbus and, Heavy Metal at the Akron Art Museum in Akron, OH. Upcoming, Sullivan Smith will have a solo exhibition at the Springfield Museum of Art in Fall, 2020. Sullivan Smith served on the board of Integrative Teaching International, has been featured on the Podcast, Positive Space, and views both art making and teaching as an all encompassing and integrated human experience.