Featured Artists

Alvaro Alvarez

architectual artist

I’m Alvaro – very nice to meet you. Usually at this point I have to cordially clarify how to pronounce my name, which is followed by a surprised reaction from others when they learn that my last name is Alvarez. My full name is Alvaro Andres Alvarez Bustamante and I am a visual artist. Born in San Diego, CA and raised in Tijuana, Mexico, I identify as a “Border Boy,” meaning my way of life is completely intertwined on both sides of the US-Mexico wall, like millions around here.

I founded my art studio during the most memorable year in recent history, 2020, and though I planned on opening up my practice prior to the pandemic, I didn’t want to use the contagion as an excuse not to. My binational art practice is strongly influenced by architectural representation, neuroscience in design, and hospitality story-telling. These three concepts are very dear to me given my past experiences, personal identity, and goal in life; which is to freely create art with passion and integrity.


Image: Alvaro Alvarez, Deep Boundaries – Chaos
Sepia Ink on 140 lb paper, 20″ x 16″

Kaori Fukuyama

multi-disciplinary artist

Living under the seductive sunlight of San Diego for many years, I am inspired by the interplay of color and light in both the natural world (sunset, rainbow, dappled forest light) and in man-made environments (spotlights, reflection off a building, neon signs). I am fascinated by how light affects the way we see, feel, and perceive our surroundings. The complex relationship among color, light, and form is the focus of my artwork, which spans abstract paintings, drawings, sculptures, and installations. Every work starts with experimenting or what I like to call “playing” in the studio by both stimulating my curiosity and challenging my understanding. I take materials that reflect, refract or bend light in my hands, and carefully observe their interactions under various lighting conditions.

Some experiments result in paintings or drawings that attempt to capture a particular radiance, some develop into three-dimensional objects whose form and surface emerge through direct engagement with the surrounding light, and others evolve as site-specific installations where viewers are invited to experience the spatial and temporal effect of light from multiple perspectives and at different times of the day. My work brings to light what is all around us in our everyday life yet often taken for granted, reminding us to contemplate the wonders of light through our perceptual process that makes us who we are.

Kaori Fukuyama

Image: Tabiji #2. Oil on Canvas, 36x25x3

Kline Swonger

artist and designer

Throughout our lives, we encounter space that is draped in layers of past events and personal experiences. I believe space is experienced as place when one becomes aware of the emotions, memories, and occurrences within that space. We create intimate psychological and physical bonds with our surroundings and I am interested in the subconscious influences of place and transitionary spaces. I imagine place as residing simultaneously in both physical and emotional landscapes, and the moments experienced in-between offering new perspective and opportunity for discovery. My work investigates place through personal experience within the in-between.

As a sculptor, my process develops intuitively through material investigations and unearthing personal memories. The work begins by collecting materials and found objects which shift my perspective and evoke emotions from which I then work. Concepts of liminality, loss, place, perception, and ritual are explored through materials and research. Numerous small objects are made which inform the larger sculptures. The finished pieces are an amalgamation of fragmented parts. Materials are transformed into organic forms and simplified structures to capture emotions felt from life experiences and beauty from natural phenomena.
Spatial boundaries, abstraction, subtle shifts in light and details, and manipulated materials which engage the senses are formally integrated into the works. Through the use of shadow and light with a limited color palette, a feeling of absence and reflection in both the literal and metaphorical sense is evoked. The tangible objects project shadows, drawing attention to the surrounding architecture and area between the intangible elements and the physical constructions.

The intention of the work is to elicit an emotive response. Through aesthetically quiet sculpture installations, space for reflection is created. The viewer is invited to explore their own thresholds of perception, noticing their engagement with the world through their senses.

Kline Swonger

Image: Holding Space. Concrete and fabric, 5’ x 4’ x 2’