AVD

Amy VanDonsel

Hello!

Hi. I’m Amy. I think about shapes and colors. And sometimes computers.

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For the past five years, I’ve worked at Baileys’ Restaurants, a local restaurant group in St. Louis, initially part-time while working at an arts non-profit, and then most recently directing public relations, handling social media, and coordinating special events.

Looking back at my past professional experiences and recreational interests, I see a love of variety, experimentation, and learning. If there’s a common thread, it stitches artistic expression to problem solving and administration…working creatively to communicate and implement ideas, then assembling and oiling the resulting idea-gears to get them turning efficiently, then monitoring that kinetic sculpture’s smooth and steady rotation.

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This is Paul Klee’s Twittering Machine (Die Zwitscher-Maschine) , 1922, watercolor and pen and ink oil transfer on paper, and as show in Through the Vanishing Point: Space in Poetry and Painting by Marshall McLuhan.

If LinkedIn is to be trusted, others feel most familiar and confident with my event planning and management, fundraising, social media, marketing, public relations, and art. During the past fifteen years, I’ve applied those skills across industries in hospitality, arts, real estate, construction, tech, and the non-profit sector.

My art-making began with scenic painting for theatrical productions, leading to exhibiting acrylic, mixed media, collage, and assemblage. For the past two years, I’ve been experimenting with eco-printing, which involves layering plants with paper or fiber, pressing this packet between weight, and then steaming or simmering the package in an natural dye bath. During this process, the plants release (sometimes unpredictable!) natural colors while simultaneously serving as the printing resist. Adding specific types of metal or wood to the bath can perform interesting color shifts. I’m addicted to this technique for the element of surprise. While I have some power to manipulate the results, and I feel as if I’m performing ancient alchemical magic, the plants seem to know best.

I live in St. Louis, Missouri with my partner, four chickens, a backyard vegetable garden, an open floorpan, and a messy basement, where I like to make things, read things, walk places, share snacks, drink wine, and take naps.