Meet The Artists: 2022 Multicultural Artwalk in the Garden

The Environmental Center is pleased to host our third annual Multicultural Artwalk in the Garden as part of the City of Bend’s Welcoming Week! This year, the theme of Welcoming Week is #WhereWeBelong, which inspired us to invite artists from all backgrounds and styles to participate in this live exhibit in our space. Read on to learn more about each of these artists, their style, and the work you’ll expect to see at the event.

Irene Cooper – Spoken Word

About Irene: Irene Cooper is the author of Committal, poet-friendly spy-fy about family (V.A. Press) & spare change (FLP), finalist for the Stafford/Hall Award. Writings appear in Denver Quarterly, The Feminist Wire, The Rumpus, streetcake, Witness, Beloit, & elsewhere. Irene supports AIC-directed writing at a regional prison, teaches creative writing in community, and lives with her people and Maggie in Oregon. Find out more about Irene & her work here.

Evan Namkung – Visual Artist

Evan Namkung is an artist/muralist from Bend, Oregon. He grew up in Oakland, California before moving to Bend, and his art is inspired by the unseen and under-appreciated aspects of life, whether in the city or natural environment. His goal is to capture these elements and bring them to the forefront, whether it’s the face of a person who would otherwise be ignored or the depiction of wildlife through his uniquely deconstructed style. His style is deeply inspired by street art, and he brings influences of the color, spontaneity and freedom of graffiti while also incorporating modern elements of realism. He views every painting as a mural on a canvas that could just as easily be seen on the side of a building, and whether it’s the grit of city living, the diverse world of plants and animals, or anything in between, his art offers us opportunities to see our world differently.

Bergen Bock – Visual Artist

Born in California and raised in the Bay Area, Bergen has been influenced by the folk and street art of her youth, using vivid hues and movements to convey emotions. After spending fifteen years in the rugged north of Alaska, Bergen now resides in Bend, Oregon. Bergen’s focus on the human form often parallels with her desire to represent the discounted, to embrace the differences and similarities in all humanity. Impacted by generational human trauma, they are often compelled to express their own heartache through creating. Love of the human form, bold mark making, polychromatic schemas, and overlapping artistic inspirations have all guided them throughout their artistic journey. Bergen view’s the world in bold colors, sees our connectedness with nature, our ability to adapt and evolve. They use our similarities to bring symmetry and balance to a thought or a feeling. In a divisive world, they search for harmonies.

V. Mello – Spoken Word

V. Mello was born and raised in NYC – Queens. He uses elements of Hip Hop in his spoken word. He has been performing for about a year and is looking to continue to learn. He enjoys taking classes at COCC and has been backcountry splitboarding for 6 years.

Matti Joy – Musician 

Matti Joy is a local teacher, performer, artist, writer, and mother. Her fingerstyle-folk is Mitchell-Meets-Young on guitar, ukulele, and dulcimer, all paired with a classically trained voice and an eye for what she thinks is important in life, namely: Community, Mental Health, and Compassion for all folks and fauna.

Nicola Carpinelli – Visual Artist

For Italian American artist Nicola Carpinelli the brush is just one of the many vehicles for self expression. Paintings representative of his perception of the world combined with bazaar materials make for very interesting interpretations. Carpinelli paintings can be found all around the world, including a painting that hangs in Quorum watches offices in London next to an original Picasso. In 2019 Nicola founded  a nonprofit organization with academy award nominee and best selling author Mariel Hemingway, and one of the Nation’s leading trauma specialists Dr. Howard Asher, named The Dead Poets Foundation also known as HÚE (hearts unknowns education) where they work with healing children suffering from suicidal ideation, anxiety and depression through the arts When asked to comment on his work he says “for me painting is love… Other emotions, ups and downs and everything in between love and pain are the catalyst, love is the color and pain is the brush, The rest is synchronicity.”