Artist INC Houston

Artist INC and M-AAA collaborate with Fresh Arts to present Artist INC Live Houston

About Fresh Arts

Fresh Arts is dedicated to strengthening the sustainability and vibrancy of Houston’s arts sector by bolstering the capacity and professional practice of artists and arts organizations and enhancing the public’s engagement with the arts. Fresh Arts is committed to the growth of a thriving, innovative, and diverse arts sector in Houston and towards that end, provides programming and services in the arenas of professional development training, resource aggregation, showcasing, community building, and audience development. They are a help-desk and small business development center, as well as an advocate, intermediary, and support network for Houston’s creative community.

Artist INC Live will convene in Houston in the spring of 2018.

Houston Peer Facilitators

Outspoken Bean

Emanuelee “Outspoken Bean” is a performance poet, writer, compassionate mentor, electric entertainer, and an educator. Bean travels the country performing his original works and inspiring creative minds. Bean is a military brat but, calls San Antonio, Texas home and since high school Bean has been producing shows and performing continuously. That work ethic has taken him to Trinidad to Off-Broadway New York City and across the Houston Metropolitan where he inspires people from all walks of life to find their voice. He is a Texas Poet Laureate nominee, ranked 9th in the Individual World Poetry Slam 2013, ranked 2nd in collaborative poetry at Group Piece Finals 2013 and, is ranked 11th at National Poetry Slam 2014 (both with Houston VIP). He started performing spoken-word in 2005. In his senior year at Prairie View A&M, Bean founded and coached the University’s first poetry slam team. In their first year, they won the title in their region and grabbed the 8th place ranking in the country at College Union Poetry Slam Invitational (CUPSI ’08). Bean has also worked with the Harris County Department of Education, Houston’s Young Audiences: Arts for Learning and Texas Commission for the Arts, and Houston Grand Opera. He serves as the Project Coordinator, Lead Coach and mentor for Meta-Four Houston, a project under Writers in the Schools’ WITS Performance program. Where professional performance/slam poets encourage self-expression and literacy among Houston’s youth through creative writing and performance.

Mario Figueroa, Jr. (aka GONZO247)

Mario E. Figueroa, Jr. aka GONZO247 was born and raised in Houston, Texas. GONZO was exposed to graffiti and began his pursuit as a self-taught artist in 1985. He opened Aerosol Warfare Gallery, founded The Graffiti & Street Art Art Museum of Texas (2015), produced an Aerosol Warfare video series, established a Houston Wall Of Fame (the city’s first largest art production of its kind), has participated in over 50 exhibitions and art projects while also working with top brand campaigns that speak to urban communities.  He has evolved his studio art from aerosol on canvas to aerosol on layered plexiglass using a backwards painting technique.  He creates art on a local, national and international level.  He is well known as an upstanding artist and an early-on pioneer in the graffiti and street art genres in Houston, Texas; he manages Aerosol Warfare and continues to create art, murals and team-based productions. He has served several communities in his local hometown Houston, Texas through teaching his medium and volunteering his time to fellow artists and art groups throughout his career.  Some of the local organizations he has worked with are TEDxYouth Houston, Avenue CDC – Art on The Avenue, DiverseWorks,  Fresh Arts, Houston Arts Alliance, The Orange Show Center and Project Row Houses.

Felipe Lopez

Felipe Lopez is a multi-dimensional self-taught artist. Born in New York, Lopez has participated in dozens of exhibitions and museums around the country. Lopez’s professional career began over seven years ago with exhibitions exploring mixed media drawings & paintings. His new works are a now mix of 2D and 3D including installation, photography, large-scale monoprinted sculptures, and video with sound art.  In his early career, Lopez was selected as one of 15 artists to participate in the TSU Youth Entrepreneurship Academy. He is a 2011 Recipient of the Young Art Entrepreneur Award from Ernst & Young and has since appeared in various print articles and editorials over the years including Houston Style magazine in which he was featured as a 2011 emerging artist on the rise. In 2013, Felipe’s work was included in two large exhibitions at prestigious institutions: the Exposure exhibition in Long Island City, NY and the African American Artist exhibition at the Museum of Fine Arts Houston. That same year Lopez was selected for a well-received solo show by Houston Arts Alliance in Houston, TX. In 2014, Felipe began exhibiting a new series of paintings and sculptural works in his Hook series and exhibited work at Art Miami. 2015 included work at the African American Artist Exhibition at MFAH, Houston Fine Art Fair, Texas Contemporary, and KCAM.

Tami Merrick

Tami Merrick has lived/worked for the past 16 years at her studio in the First Ward Cultural Arts District in Houston, Texas. She has extensive studies at Art League and is completing a certification at MFAH Glassell School of Art with major in painting and sculpture. In addition, she has a Master of Architecture degree. She received a Houston City Initiative Grant for an international collaboration project. “Rorpost Collaboration Project” was created with her artist critique organization called Art Chatter. She is also was part of a two artist collaborative sculpture commission at the George R. Brown convention in Houston. Process and color field with juxtapositions of flatten forms are inherent in her art career. She experiments in multi layered mediums including: ink, Mylar, collage, acrylic/ enamel/ oil paints, wood, and salvaged materials. Her sculptural work is still in exploration and flux in terms of medium and materials. Most recent series worked mostly in assemblage of found materials from Houston Building recycle center.

Mollie Miller

Mollie Haven Miller is a dancer, educator and arts administrator from the Houston area.  She received her BS in Dance from Texas State University before returning to Houston.  As a dancer she has performed works by Sara Draper, Rebecca French, Lydia Hance, and Ashley Horn, as well as her own choreography. Mollie has taught a wide range and variety dance genres, and still continues to work preschool age children through creative movement classes. She has worked for Dance Source Houston, a service organization that promotes and supports Houston’s professional dance community, for six years and was recently promoted to Interim Director.  In her expanded role with DSH, Mollie produces the Barnstorm Dance Fest, facilitates the organization’ s programs and services including membership, residency, dance writings, and professional development workshops, as well as serves as the face of the organization and advocate for the local dance community.

Dominique Røyem

Dominique Røyem is the Music Director of the Fort Bend Symphony Orchestra. An active guest conductor, she has worked with ensembles such as the Ukrainian State Orchestra, Plevin Philharmonic, Galveston Symphony, Moores Opera Center, Sugarland Opera, HBU Opera Theatre, and the Houston Civic Orchestra. She was the Resident Conductor for Bayou City Concert Musicals, Music Director for Houston Grand Opera’s Opera to Go!  during the 12-13 and 13-14 seasons, and the Conducting Fellow for the Allentown Symphony Orchestra’s 2012-2013 season.   She has a Doctorate in Orchestral Conducting from the University of Houston Moores School of Music. Her dissertation, entitled “Generic Integration and Its Expressive Potential in the Music of Kurt Weill and Richard Rodgers,” uses semiotic and genre theory to illuminate the similarities between opera and musical theatre in the 1940’s and 1950’s. Dominique currently lectures at the Women’s Institute of Houston. Her upcoming engagements can be found on, or on Twitter: @dominiqueroyem, Instagram: @dominiqueroyem, and Facebook: Dominique Røyem.

Lori Yuill

Lori Yuill is an independent choreographer, performer and teaching artist.  Her work challenges audiences to look at dance in new ways, and aims to create and connect to community through movement. She did her undergraduate work at TCU and then moved to Guatemala to perform and teach with Momentum Danza Contemporanea.  In 2000 Lori returned to Houston and performed with Suchu Dance.  In 2003 Lori moved to NY to pursue a masters degree at Sarah Lawrence College. She spent the next decade in New York and DC performing for Sara Rudner, Anneke Hansen, Milka Djordjevich, Stephanie Miracle, and Daniel Burkholder/The Playground.  Lori’s choreography has been presented internationally in Paraguay, Guatemala, Brooklyn, NYC, and Houston.  She was a 2014-2015 Artist in Residence at Dance Source Houston and received an Artist Project Grant from Houston Art Alliance to make “The Story of a Space”, a site specific piece set in Tranquility Park.