Chantala Kommanivanh is an emerging Laotian American artist. Kommanivanh's work is inspired from old family photographs and found images representing his childhood. His work uses paint and loose canvas, often collage and layered with drawn and painted marks, areas of thick paint and thin stains of color to explore his experience as a member of a refugee family. There are glimpses of a displaced youth negotiating a new cultural landscape, family ties, and various aspects of identity and urban life in his work. His paintings combine colorful and sometimes aggressive abstraction with moments of sensitive photographic clarity...perhaps an appropriate analogy to an engaged life.
Kommanivanh's work has been displayed in four solo exhibitions in Chicago and numerous group and invitational exhibitions across the U.S. He received his M.F.A. at UW-Milwaukee Peck School of the Arts, studying painting and drawing. He has achieved numerous awards such as the prestigious Union League Civic & Arts Foundation award and a two time A.O.P. Fellowship award recipient. Kommanivanh is also an arts instructor at Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago.
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