Tonight, the evening of May 31, the Swan Coach House Gallery will open a new exhibition––the first since our alumna, Michelle Laxalt (MFA 2016) joined the team as Gallery Manager. Laxalt is one of our distinguished, former Welch Fellows, a graduate with a concentration in ceramics who makes sculptural works that references anatomical textures and forms, pointing to the vulnerability, exhaustion, and aging of the flesh. The body is both absent and present, conjured in materials such as clay, fibers, and bodily materials like hair and soap. Laxalt still serves our school as a foundations teacher and balances an active studio practice located at the Goat Farm Arts Center.
“I am very excited to be the Gallery Manager at the Swan Coach House Gallery,” Laxalt shared with the Welch School of Art & Design. “In addition to performing the organizational and technical skills that make a gallery tick, I am looking forward to being in the company of artists, curators, and other creatives. I am grateful to be more involved the Atlanta arts community–as an artist, educator, and now as a gallerist.”
From the Swan Coach House Gallery press release:
…The managerial reins will be given to Michelle Laxalt, who has been hired as Gallery Manager effective immediately. Laxalt earned her MFA in Ceramics as a Welch Fellow at Georgia State University and her BFA from the University of Nevada, Reno. Laxalt, who is also a noted sculptor, is known for her ceramic and sculptural works which suggest human forms. In July 2016 she was an artist in residence at the Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, Vermont, and in May 2017 her work was featured in a solo exhibition at the Holland Project Gallery in Reno, Nevada. Laxalt has exhibited nationally in both invitational and juried exhibitions, most recently in the 22nd Annual San Angelo National Ceramic Competition at the San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts in Texas. She currently has a studio at the Goat Farm Arts Center in Atlanta and teaches part-time at Georgia State University.
“We are thrilled to welcome Michelle to the Swan Gallery family,” said Robyn Barkin, co-chair of the Swan Coach House Gallery, who described Laxalt as “a genuine find.” “She’s a gifted artist who comes to us with the highest of recommendations and precisely the skill sets we need.”