Elevate: Senior Visual Art Majors Exhibition


Elevate: Senior Visual Art Majors Exhibition


Elevate: Senior Visual Art Majors Exhibition

GOCA Downtown | 121 S. Tejon St., #100

April 15 - May 14, 2022


GOCA presents a capstone exhibition by UCCS Visual And Performing Arts students, focused on visual arts discipline, at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.

Artists: Lauren Butler, Sarah Doughty, Emily Grant, Cayley Heinold, Nova Heitman, Rachel Johnson, Amadea Katz, Jack Lusk, Geordon Savoy, KJ Shook, Kendall Stears, Bryce Van Drew

Instagram: @vauccs and @gococolospgs

Image Design by Nova Heitman


Exhibition on View 

April 15 - May 14, 2022

Opening Reception & Awards Event

Friday, April 15, 5 - 9 p.m.

FREE event! No registration needed.

First Friday Event

Friday May 6, 2022, 5 - 8 p.m.

FREE event! No registration needed.


Friday - Sunday, 12- 6 p.m. or by appointment

Masks are currently optional.


laura butler

 Lauren Butler

Lauren Butler creates paintings and installations which discuss ideas of vulnerability, transparency, growth, and transformation. Focusing predominantly on landscapes both in her installation designs as well as her paintings, she works to depict her personal journey of growth and progress that unfolds over time. Her work tends to suspend itself in space in a life-size configuration. Butler aims to use colors and recognizable forms to engage people with memorabilia and familiar artifacts that connect them with their own childhood or inner playfulness. In her more recent work, she has utilized materials like mirrors and fabric that are fragmented in a way that is both translucent and ethereal.

Lauren Butler was born in 1999 in Johnson City, New York. She plans to receive her BA in December 2022 from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. Embarking on a journey to understand herself through the mediums of acrylic paint and drawing since childhood, she has just recently branched out to sculpture and installation. Butler exhibits her first installation work in Elevate, a group art exhibition at UCCS’s Downtown Galleries of Contemporary Art. Working an assortment of jobs, both art related and other, Butler plans to eventually start her own studio and use it as a communal gallery for artists to work alongside her and keep each other inspired. Butler currently lives and works in Colorado Springs, CO.

Instagram: @lauren_bonet_art

Lauren Butler, Emerge, installation, dimensions variable, 2022



sarah doughty picSarah Doughty

Sarah Doughty uses her art to explore internal, personal feelings regarding self-esteem and self-discovery. Her artwork revolves around her personal life and how she personifies herself in life situations. She uses a combination of recycled trash and paper mache to create sculptures of animal masks and other animalistic features. She was drawn to recycled materials after being confined to her home during the pandemic. These animal traits and hyperboles are used as representations of her emotions. These masks are worn in public and private spaces to express the symbolic feeling embodied by each piece.

Sarah Doughty is from Horicon, Wisconsin. In May 2022 she will be receiving her BA in Visual and Performing Arts from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. She is a sculptor who creates her pieces out of recycled cardboard and newspaper to explore personal events in the form of animals. She will be showing her artworks at the UCCS senior show, Elevate, a group exhibition at UCCS’s Galleries of Contemporary Art Downtown. Doughty plans to move to California and pursue graphic design and marketing.


Instagram: @sarahspring_art Sarah Doughty, Coming Out of My Shell, cardboard and acrylic paint, 3x2’, 2021



emily grant picEmily Grant

Emily Grant makes art that communicates thoughts, feelings and emotions, utilizing photography as her main medium. She strives to find calm, still moments in chaotic places, capturing the instants most people forget to see. In this series, she has photographed the different places she lived within one year. Grant spent most of her college years moving from place to place, and within the year of the pandemic (2020) she moved a total of four times. This series shows the variation between these living situations and emphasizes how Grant survived this displacement.

Emily Grant was born in 1997 in Highlands Ranch, Colorado. She will be receiving her BA from the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs in both Psychology and Visual Arts in May 2022. Grant had her first collaborative show, Obsolete, in 2021 at the Heller Center. She will be in more collaborative exhibitions in the coming months, including an advanced photography show which will be shown at The Kreuser Gallery downtown and the senior exhibition Elevate which will be held at UCCS’s Galleries of Contemporary Art. She will also be participating in shows curated by the Art Club, on which she serves as the President. Grant currently resides in Colorado Springs, CO.


Instagram: @emilycarline_art_23

Emily Grant, Temporary Places, 4 rows of 10 8.5x11” photographs on mylar, dimensions variable, 2021

cayley heinold picCayley Heinold

Based on her personal surroundings and imagination, Cayley Heinold’s work highlights sights and things that people tend to overlook or consider mundane. These everyday scenes serve as a reminder of how the small things in life are deserving of value. This encompasses both the places she experiences in the present and the ones she wishes to inhabit in the future. Through a variety of media, Heinold’s work conveys how everyday living spaces can be just as worthy of recognition as the most lauded spaces of real and imagined architecture.

Cayley Heinold was born in 2000 in Carrollton, TX. She intends to graduate with a BA in Visual Art in May 2022 from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. In 2021, her work was featured in volume 48 of the arts journal Riverrun. Steeped in classic cartoons from a young age, Heinold takes inspiration from these bright aesthetics to create boldly colored prints and illustrations examining everyday life. Post-graduation, she hopes to work as a visual development artist for television and film. Heinold currently resides in Colorado Springs, Colorado.


Instagram: @cayleysueart

Cayley Heinold, Present, cut paper, 6 ½x 4”, 2021

nova heitman picNova Heitman

Nova Heitman uses digital drawings to express feelings of confusion, acceptance, and celebration surrounding her Korean-American identity. Heitman replicates and reimagines found photographs of females and uses Pop Art and comic book drawing styles as inspiration for line, color, and subject matter. By using primary colors, Heitman is able to layer a variety of meanings and interpretations for the viewer to discover. Red and blue, for instance, are colors of both the South Korean and American flag; Heitman then uses yellow to highlight these polarizing colors. Red and blue are often used to differentiate between good and evil, warm and cold, republican and democratic political parties, fire and water, etc. Heitman employs these colors to discuss the complications of negotiating a multi-faceted identity. Art is the outlet that is used to express oneself, and Heitman aims to do just that.

Nova Heitman was born in 2000 in Colorado Springs, Colorado. In May of 2022, she will graduate from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs with a Bachelor of Arts. In her early life, she drew constantly, and in more recent years, she fell in love with graphic design and the digital space. In April 2022, Heitman will be showcased in her first ever group exhibition at UCCS’s Galleries of Contemporary Art. Heitman has goals to pursue a graphic design internship or position at a company that will provide her with more knowledge and experience in marketing and art careers. Heitman currently lives and works in Colorado Springs, CO, but hopes to move to the west or to Hawai’i.

Instagram: @novabyart

Nova Heitman, Me, Myself, and Fry, digital drawing , 12x16”, 2022

rachel johnson picRachel Johnson

Rachel Johnson’s work consists of drawings that delve into multiple artistic mechanisms including pen, charcoal and similar media. The formal quality of her work reflects her various emotional states, such as rushed and unblended charcoal to capture instability, or large-scale pieces consisting of pointillism dots to encompass meditation. Her subject matter and process operate in conjunction to capture the cathartic experience of reaching acceptance after a long passage of time. In her pieces, she represents themes of impermanence, a lack of connection to herself and to the world around her, self-reflection and acceptance in terms of identity.

Rachel Johnson was born in 2000 in Colorado Springs, Colorado. She is currently planning to receive her BA in Visual Arts from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs in December 2022. The majority of her work consists of drawing and portraiture which depicts self-acceptance and reflection. Johnson’s work is being shown with the senior exhibition, Elevate, at the Gallery of Contemporary Art and in another group exhibition at the Kreuser Gallery, both located in downtown Colorado Springs. Johnson currently lives and works in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Instagram: @rachel.j_art

Rachel Johnson, longing, white pen on black poster board, 22x28”, 2021

amadea katz picAmadea Katz

Amadea Katz's work explores body image and parental relationships through a multidisciplinary practice comprising sculpture, painting, drawing, photography, live performance, film and collage. Afflicted with excoriation disorder since childhood, Katz's compositions focus primarily on irritated skin as a parable for generational trauma and chronic pain. Her 2D and 3D works primarily consist of abstracted renderings of flesh forms and the female figure that conflate the grotesque with the beautiful. Her 4D work employs live and recorded performance to discuss the tension between mother and daughter, as well as to investigate the need for independence as one transitions from youth to adulthood. Her art embodies themes such as identity, dysmorphia, body pain, intergenerational tension, and memory.

Amadea Katz was born in 1999 in Colorado Springs, CO. She currently studies at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs and will receive her BA in Visual Arts in the summer of 2022. From the humble beginnings of comic-style drawing, Katz has expanded her practice to include an array of painting, sculpture, live performance and video art exploring femininity, memory, parent-child relationships, and the body. Katz exhibited her first body of work in Specter, a collaborative show at UCCS's Heller Center, and will also appear in UCCS’s The Art Show and GOCA’s Elevate later this year. Katz currently works as a framer, and plans to have a long, chaotic, nomadic career filling various positions in contemporary art galleries and the art world at large. Katz currently lives and creates in her hometown of Colorado Springs.

Instagram: @amadeusxart

Amadea Katz, Field, acrylic on canvas, 36x24”, 2021

jack lusk picJack Lusk

When it comes to making art, and particularly this work, my motivating narrative has always been one of experimentation and the mixture of art forms using movement. Whether that movement is physical or suggested is irrelevant to me; I simply let the art speak and flow naturally. This cityscape art was born when I allowed my fascination with representational energy and momentum to burgeon into a relationship with three-dimensional spaces. This piece became the birds-eye view of a city, as I believe cities are energy and have flow within them that humans understand their place within, subconsciously or not.

With my past works, I have strived for realism and attempted to make the viewer question what a real space is versus what is not. This time around, I took the Kanto region of Japan and completely warped it into a symmetrical-asymmetrical representation of a megacity that is in one sense “real” and in another sense fictionalized. The final three pieces comprise satellite scans of Tokyo. When I say symmetrical- asymmetrical, I am referring to the method by which I create these works; the built city is a composition of smaller scans that have been flipped, such that some parts of the final work are mirrored, while other sectors are completely unique. Thus, this relationship becomes “symmetrical-asymmetrical” as it occupies both states simultaneously. My finished work allows the viewer to notice different elements each time by flowing through the piece using the aid of the overpainted red portions.

Jack Lusk was born in 1999 in Denver, Colorado and attends the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, where he will receive his BA in Visual Art in May of 2022. Lusk primarily works in software engineering and uses a multitude of programs, both of his own design and industry standard, to create his pieces. Leveraging new experimental techniques developed over the course of his academic career, Lusk is attempting to push the boundaries of mixing traditional architectural and artistic design with computer engineering.


Instagram: @J_LuskDesign

Jack Lusk, Kanto Flow, digital, 2021

geordon savoy picGeordon Savoy

Geordon Savoy’s work relies on empathy and awareness, with a strong emphasis on craft and careful selection of materials for their symbolic significance. He aims for his creations to portray the American human spirit. Some images reveal melancholy and loss, while others celebrate heroism. These representations of Americans are tasteful and timeless. His artwork acknowledges that success depends on a community of people working together; the challenge is to see beyond the distraction of one’s own self and appreciate one’s neighbors, co-workers, and countrymen. His goal is to inspire those who see his work to look more carefully at the world and people around them, to discover the beauty and worth of others.

Geordon Savoy was born in 1990 in Auerbach, Germany but lives in Colorado Springs, CO. He plans on receiving his BA in December 2022 from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. Geordon is currently working on exploring his talents and, as he describes it, “is not one to sit around and ponder but to express any and all art forms”. He is always looking for the next thing that sparks creativity. He exhibited his first works in Elevate, a group exhibition at UCCS’s Galleries of Contemporary Art. Currently, Geordon works as the Art, Media and Merchandise Director for the Association of Graduates at the United States Air Force Academy and is actively working to expand his role in this position.

Instagram: @geeuccsartpixs

kendall stearsKendall Stears

The motivating narrative for my work is the process of growing with my horse, Sona; she is the reason why I make art. My work is about the strong bond between Sona and I, but I also strive to make the viewer feel included. In Seasons Sonata, Sona is drawn true to size in a grid layout. This piece shows her performing with me, but as the viewer interacts with the drawing, they can feel the power and the bond of the horse. Not everyone has a horse, and I want people who see my work to feel the unique qualities of the horse and understand how most horses are treated versus how they should be respected. I have started a conversation between my artwork and my horse training by photographing and taking videos of some of our sessions in order to document our connection with each other. We grow together by performing liberty work, which is where you and the horse are only connected through your bond; there are no training aids. This is a very meaningful training technique because it takes a lot of time and connection to accomplish, which is the same with the time spent drawing to recreate these moments. Additionally, my work mainly consists of hyper realistic graphite, charcoal, and pen drawings, and acrylic paintings of Sona or Sona and I.

Kendall Stears was born in 2000 in Springdale, Arkansas. In 2022 she will be receiving her BA in Visual Arts from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. Stears will be presenting her hyper realistic, true to size horse graphite drawing in Elevate, a group exhibition at UCCS’s Galleries of Contemporary Art Downtown. Her work has been recognized in Riverrun, UCCS’s Student Literary and Arts Journal. She has also auctioned work at Manitou Art Center in Manitou Springs, CO. Stears currently lives and works in Colorado Springs, Colorado.


Instagram: @stears_1019

Kendall Stears, Horse Eye, pen and ink on paper, 8x12”, 35 total, 2020-2022

kj shoot picKJ Shook

KJ Shook uses their paintings to explore human connection and links to the mind. This series of work includes acrylic paintings with bold contrast that play with abstraction and minimalism. Their works feature bright colors and wobbly figures that embody closeness and fun. However, they also include lines that cut through the pieces and create a literal negative space within. Shook’s work is democratic in its connectivity to everyone, with pleasing colors, high contrast, and semi-recognizable figures. The most important part of Shook’s work is fostering a pleasing yet deep bond with the viewer.

KJ Shook was born in 2000 in Littleton, Colorado, but grew up in the nearby town of Falcon. They will receive their BA in Visual and Performing Arts from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. Shook started their art journey by teaching themselves from a young age, and eventually began studying it in school. Their work is mainly comprised of drawings and paintings that focus on internal struggles, but they also do digital cartooning work.

Shook exhibits their bright, energetic paintings in Elevate, a collaborative exhibition at UCCS’s Galleries of Contemporary Art Downtown. Shook plans on continuing their studies to become an art therapist in order to help other people create art in a self-fulfilling way that benefits their health. Shook currently resides in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Instagram: @kjs_arts_

KJ Shook, Ponder, acrylic on canvas board,12x18”, 2021

bryce van drewBryce Van Drew

Bryce Van Drew’s art mimics popular tourist attractions while using the style of post-impressionism to exhibit emotional and psychological responses. This series explores three locations compressed individually into a single feeling that portrays certain parts of each place that appealed most to him in a distorted order. He exclusively uses colors that resemble the tone he evoked from all three visits, which creates individuality in his travels. These works enthrall the viewer by channeling his travels into artwork as an exploration of the inner mechanisms of his mind.

Bryce Van Drew was born in Castlerock, Colorado. He is studying for his BA in Visual Arts at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. Throughout his four years, Bryce has experimented with many different media styles, ranging from animation, organic and acrylic paint, but has focused his attention around digital art. Bryce currently works at the Marie Walsh Sharpe Gallery of Contemporary Art and has the privilege of meeting amazing artists across the world. Bryce has also been working as a graphic designer on the side, designing logos for companies and fundraisers.

Bryce Van Drew, Entering, digital art, 32x34”

Instagram: @VanDrewArt


Exhibition on View
April 15 - May 14, 2022

Opening Reception & Awards Event

Friday, April 15, 5 - 9 p.m.

First Friday Event

Friday, May 6, 2022, 5 - 8 p.m.

Gallery Hours | Friday - Sunday, 12 - 6 p.m. or by appointment

Masks currently optional.