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15 Bytes reveals “Utah’s 15”


If you missed our awards reception at Finch Lane Friday night you were not privy to the winners of our new program “Utah’s 15 Most Influential Artists”.

These past couple months we asked our readership to nominate the artists they felt have changed the cultural landscape of our fine state. You responded in a big way. We received 97 nominations for artists working in the visual artists, theatre, music, literature and film community. After turning it over to a voting panel of 250 individuals from the community (including our staff, volunteers, board, the nominators and our financial supporters), the voting numbers were neck and neck, but these are your top 15 honorees. Stay tuned for more on these artists. We plan to celebrate them with a printed publication and an exhibition in 2014.


Trent Alvey
Trent has been making art for almost 50 years. She is a painter, sculptor and installation artist. She organizes exhibitions to honor her fellow artists including Claudia Sisemore and David Chaplin. She is currently represented by Phillips Gallery.


Sandy Brunvand
Sandy founded Saltgrass Printmakers with Stefanie Dykes. She taught high school for a number of years and now teaches at the University level. Her work is always fresh and exciting and she’s always active in exhibiting it in Utah.


Anna Campbell Bliss
Anna is an architect and artist interested in the intersection of art and science with murals at the airport, the University of Utah and elsewhere in the state. Her work is in national and international collections including the Art Institute of Chicago and New York City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art.


Ruby Chacon

Ruby uses her art to tell a story of people who lived in Utah prior to the Mormon Pioneers. She has turned history into murals, paintings, poetry and performance art. She committed to the Latino Youth Community and cofounded the Mestizo Institute of Culture and Art.


Anne Cullimore Decker

Anne is a professional actress seen across the state in theatre, opera, television and film. She served as a professor and director of theatre at the University of Utah.


Paul Davis

Paul is an outstanding painter and was a highly regarded professor of art at the University of Utah. He has shown in galleries from New York to Salt Lake. He and David Dornan started the Helper Workshops which coincide with the Helper Arts Festival which has launched the careers of many artists who have had the privilege of receiving his instruction.


John Erickson

John is famed for his enormous portraits filled with visual information. He taught at the University of Utah for over 30 years and continually pushes his creativity to take a traditional discipline and turn it on its edge.


Stephen Goldsmith

Stephen is a sculptor and installation artists. His works can be seen at Liberty Park, Salt Lake Community College and Primary Children’s Medical Center.. He is Associate Professor in the College of Architecture and Planning at the University of Utah.


Brian Kershisnik

Brian is a popular artist included in numerous important collections. He’s also noted for his collaborative work with Joe Adams, exhibited regularly at Art Access. He continues to donate his work to raise funds for Art Access, Utah Museum of Art, the Kimball Art Center and various cancer research efforts.


Frank McEntire

Frank’s iconic sculpture reminds us to look at ourselves with deeper reverence and an added grain of salt. He’s an arts writer and curator of exhibitions for most museums in Utah. He is a former director of the Utah Arts Council and his powerful exhibit on 9/11 was a public service to us all as it changed yearly until a decade after the tragic events.


Bonnie Phillips

Bonnie is an artist, gallery owner and arts advocate. She has owned and operated Phillips Gallery with her husband Denis for over 35 years. She also runs and maintains Jane’s House which serves as an artist residency.


Brad Slaugh

Brad makes images that celebrate the quirkiness of this state and his state of mind. He established Poor Yorick Studios which has provided a working place and a showcase for artists for ten years.


Terry Tempest Williams

Terry is an author, a conservationist and an activist. She’s widely known and recognied for her writings and achievements.


Sam Wilson
Sam has been a professor of art at the University of Utah for 35 years. He created the STations of the Cross series at the Cathedral of the Madeleine in Salt Lake City. Many artists owe much of their personal development and outlook to Sam.


Joan Woodbury

Joan cofounded the Ririe-Woodbury Dance company with Shirley Ririe in 1964. She has choreographed over 100 works with dance companies all over the world and was a professor of dance at the University of Utah for 47 years.

3 replies »

  1. I would like to see some representation from southern Utah.
    Roland Lee was a good candidate. However, since I know most of the winners, I must agree with the selection!
    I will try harder to get our artists involved.
    I love 15bytes and appreciate all the hard work that goes into this wonderful ezine!
    Thanks so much, Kathy

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