Susan Amorde, Installation at Shoebox Projects, 2017
Susan Amorde, Installation at Shoebox Projects, 2017

Susan Amorde: Sculptor and Installation Artist

This week, we bring you the work of Susan Amorde. Susan uses vintage suitcases and luggage carriers as metaphors of the metaphysical baggage we all carry with us. Susan’s work will be in Feminism Now at Shoebox Projects, February 25 to March 11 and in Points of View at Muzeumm opening March 3. Susan was recently profiled in the print edition of the San Luis Obispo Tribune.

Artist Statement

My recent mixed media works explore the notion of baggage— in all its emotional and physical manifestations.I use vintage suitcases I find at markets, thrift stores, and garage sales assembling them in myriad ways.When I happen upon a suitable suitcase, I know it instantly— as something about its character and my imagining of its history immediately resonates. I choose these specific vintage items for their personalities and for the narrative potential I can weave into my art. My sculptures are imbued with a sense of nostalgia; however, I am simultaneously exploring the more psychological and emotional connotations of baggage.

I am meticulous about my materials and carefully consider all aspects of the elements that comprise my artworks. Nothing is arbitrary or left to chance. Materials are chosen for their visual, historical and conceptual significance. My suitcase pieces range in size; some are shown as individual works while others are combined to become large-scale sculptures and installations. I address themes that range from the intimate to the universal.

In many of my works, I comment on psychological and social issues while simultaneously asking the viewer to imagine not only the contents of the valises but also their prior histories and the various travels of their diverse but absent owners. I believe these pieces to be about collective experiences.

In some of my smaller pieces I insert antique brass portholes into the sides of the suitcases. The portholes function as windows into private, womb-like worlds that are filled with small objects and carefully lit from within. The vignettes I create in these water filled spaces evoke a sense of discovery as if the viewer has happened upon a sunken treasure— in the form of small keepsakes— that reference the passage of time as well as the notion of being hooked or captured. In these pieces, I hope to evoke the sense of looking into the souls of the past and present. The pieces are also about the transformation of personal narratives into something universal.

In all my works, both past and present, I am interested in metaphorically representing human emotions, universal themes and the baggage people carry— both literally and spiritually—using carefully chosen vintage objects that I transform and juxtapose in various ways to comment on the hardship and joys of life’s journey.


JJ LHeureux
Nude Male Maids
Venice, California

Feminism Now

Visual Art Exhibition by the Feminist Image Group, Shoebox Projects and Krogen Amerika

Shoebox Projects, Los Angeles
1660 South Avenue 21 #3
Los Angeles, California, CA 90031


The exhibition will run Feb 24 – March 11, 2018
Opening Reception: opening Sunday Feb 25, 3-6pm
Gallery hours by appointment
All events free and open to the public.

Members of the San Diego Feminist Image Group, Shoebox Projects and the Swedish Group Krogen Amerika present artworks that explore multiple visions of what feminism is today, in the context of Southern California and Northern Europe. Artists address the complexity of gender equality through themes such as sexism, body image, class, race, politics, spirituality, domesticity, biology, and history.

This exhibition will travel to Stockholm, Sweden in May 2018.

The public is invited to attend the opening reception on Sunday, February 25, from 3-6pm at Shoebox Projects in the Brewery Arts Complex, Los Angeles. Artists will be present to engage the public.

The Feminist Image Group was formed in 2009. FIG is a coalition of San Diego visual artists who meet to discuss art, see exhibitions, and support one another in our careers. We work across many media, including drawing, painting, photography, sculpture, installation, digital media and performance. The group has had exhibitions at San Diego Mesa College, Art Produce Gallery, Hyde Gallery at Grossmont College, Art San Diego Artfair, and has an upcoming exhibition at the Women’s Museum of California.
“Krogen Amerika” is the name of a Swedish printmaking group in the region of Östergötland in Sweden. The group works out of a a red wooden house from 1704 in the very center of the Swedish city of Linköping. During the years, it has functioned as a private home, a local pub, and a meeting place for emigrants to America (hence the name of the house, “Krogen Amerika”). Now it is a fully functional printmaking studio and art gallery. This artist-run gallery and studio space is partly funded by the city of Linköping. About 20 artists work here, and also together manage the space, with the support from the local community. The gallery exhibits artists from all over Sweden. Krogen America has exhibited as a group at Norrköpings Museum, Östergötlands Museum, Grafiska Sällskapet, the Palo Alto City Hall, Odense Konsthall Danmark, Berlin Kunstfactor.

Participating Artists:

Agneta Östlund, Amy Paul, Ann Olsen, Anna Stump, Anna Zappoli, Anne De Geer, Åsa Kvissberg, Berit Hammarbäck, Bhavna Mehta, Bibi Davidson, Caroline Färnström, Catherine Ruane, Cathy Immordino, Cecilia Uhlin, Chenhung Chen, Christina Ruthger,, Cindy Zimmerman, Dani Dodge, Daphne Hill, Diane Williams, Dwora Fried, Emily Blythe Jones, Emily Wiseman, Erika Lizée, Ginger Rosser, Grace Gray-Adams, Hannah Johansen, Hasti Radpoor, Helen Redman, Irene Abraham, Isabelle Nilsson, Jane Szabo, Janice Grinsell, Jeanne Dunn, Jennifer Bennett, Jenny Treece Jorup, JJ L’Heureux, Judy Christensen, Kathi McCord, Kathleen Mitchell, Kathy Miller, Kathy Nida, Kim Niehans, Kit Aaboe, Kristine Schomaker, Lauren Carrera, Lena Möller, Lena Wiklund, Linda Litteral, Linda Rae Coughlin, Lisa Hutton, Marina Holmberg, Moya Devine, Nilly Gill, Nurit Avesar, Petrina Cooper, Pia Göransson-Lie, Prudence Horne, Randi Leirnes, Randi Matushevitz, Samantha Fields, Samuelle Richardson, Sheli Silverio, Stacie Birky-Greene, Stephanie Bedwell, Susan Amorde, Susan Osborn, Susan T. Kurland, Terri Hughes-Oelrich, Terrilynn Quick, Yasmine Diaz



Huddle – A Postcard Show at Shoebox Projects. Photo Credit. Kristine Schomaker

**UPDATE** I am so excited to announce, we raised $1400 to be split between the ACLU, Planned Parenthood and the Trevor Project!!


The #equalityforall #resist postcard art show

Hosted by Shoebox Projects and Art and Cake

Curated by Kristine Schomaker
Sponsored by Shoebox PR


“First, we marched. Now we Huddle. We will gather together in our neighborhoods all over the world to define our next steps, and envision how to transform the energy we saw at Women’s Marches into local and national action.

Huddle (n.) – a small group of people holding an informal conversation”

I was part of a recent huddle in Los Angeles. It was an amazing experience to feel like we aren’t alone in our thinking about the current political climate. We talked about what is going on in our country and what we could do to make a difference.

This is one of my next steps. I am curating a postcard art show at Shoebox Projects in September 2017.

Sales: All work is donated to the show and sold for $25 each. 100% of proceeds will be donated equally to the ACLU, Planned Parenthood and the Trevor Project. Payable by Check, Cash or Credit Card (additional fees may apply) at the reception.

Thank you for sharing your voices!!

Follow Art and Cake, Shoebox Projects and Shoebox PR to keep up with the latest information on our HUDDLE.



Manage Your Art Career With Outside Help

By C.M. Schmidlkofer

Published in Professional Artist April/May 2017


Artists can find themselves burning the candle at both ends at any point in their careers. Both emerging and established artists struggle managing time, money, marketing and productivity. Adding family obligations and outside employment to the mix increases stress resulting in potentially costly mistakes, repetitive efforts and missed opportunities.


It doesn’t have to be that way. For a price, there are services available to help lighten the load of artists.

The traditional route is gallery representation. Best case, your gallerist is a collaborator. Yet a gallery can be difficult to obtain and limited to its own brand and clientele.

Artists may seek out a public relations manager for more exposure. Or another alternative is obtaining a business manager. Those who are dedicated to visual artists can provide financial and career planning, social media management, support and workshops and connection to galleries and exhibitions.

“I decided to seek out management services because I felt like I needed help promoting my work,” Said California installation artist Erika Lizée ( “I teach full time and am mother of two, so my time is stretched thin. The management services help me to stay focused on my art career goals, while
also helping me to feel more connected to the art world.”

Lizée is one of 18 contemporary artists who are clients of Los Angeles-based Shoebox PR (

She said the management company’s services have helped her gain press for her work, connected her to critics and writers that she normally would not have approached on her own as well as sending out calls for art- something she considers a great resource that aids her in finding new grants and exhibitions to apply for.

“In general, their services help to keep me on track and moving my career forward,” she said.

Erika Lizée

“Artists are seeking alternative ways of getting exposure,” Kristine Schomaker, director of Los Angeles-based Shoebox PR (, said.

“A manager can help artists stay organized and direct them where to apply or show work,” Schomaker said. “The artist manager knows the art world. They can guide you through doors you had no idea where open.”

Also represented by Shoebox PR are artists Dani Dodge ( and Susan Amorde ( who use Schomaker to promote their work.

Dodge relies on Schomaker for guidance when it comes to which shows to apply to and which to hold off on.

“This is invaluable when I have so many great opportunities in front of me and I’m like a kid in a candy store,” she said. “Kristine and I meet regularly to discuss my career and where it is headed. She also listens when I think I might need a certain kind of coverage and does everything she can to make it happen.”

Dodge said in the past she has paid mentors to help steer her career in the right direction but Shoebox PR is her first experience with a business manager.

Dani Dodge

This help comes at a price. Shoebox PR offers services ranging from $100 for a subscription to its call for art/grant/residency list to $1800 for event/exhibition promotion. Its management package requires a monthly retainer of $900 a month and includes social media management, business coaching, marketing, event and exhibition public relations, workshops and more.

“We don’t work with percentages or commissions as our goals aren’t to sell the artist’s work, but to give them the resources and support to help them sell.” Schomaker said. “We aren’t dealers or consultants in that regard, but have worked with them in the past.”

It’s not unusual for a manager to take a percentage of retail sales rather than a flat fee, and the percentage and terms will vary from manager to manager, Leo Weinstein, co-owner of Weinstein Art Management (, said.

Weinstein and his wife, Julia, represent artists all over the world, charging 15 percent of the retail sale to cover management expenses.

The percentage can be significant depending on the sale price of the art, Leon Weinstein said.

He shared an experience where a longtime client’s paintings sold for under $5000 and just recently one was sold for $70,000.

“You can structure it in a different way – 30 percent of any money that are coming in to the artist’s way with a manager’s help and from his agreed exclusive territory,” Weinstein said.

Located in Woodland Hills, California, the couple market globally and offer specialty services in addition to publicity and career advice for their clients, which typically range from 35 to 40 artists at one time.

Weinstein seeks out retail opportunities for artists not only in galleries, but also auctions and licenses artists’ images for posters, limited-edition prints or merchandising.

“We are creating marketing materials, helping galleries to advertise and participating in organization of exhibition,” Weinstein said.

“We collect money, handle their visas to the U.S. when required and advise on a variety of other matters.”

The business started in 1989 whilst helping an artist from Georgia (formerly part of the U.S.S.R.) negotiate a long-term contract with a Japanese gallery. Soon they were representing artists in ex-communist countries who didn’t understand marketing, especially in the United States.

The Weinstein’s accept established as well as emerging artists for representation. They ask for at least 12 images to consider by email with a biography or a link to the artist’s website. Artists are judged by taste, ability to change and what Weinstein calls “sell-ability.”

“Just to receive advice is not good enough,” he said. “Like singers, actors and musicians, visual artists need guidance in how to present their art, to whole to present it, how to build credentials and what galleries, dealers or other art professionals not to work with.”

The Weinsteins collaborate with artists who work in realism, impressionism and photorealism art.

Leon Weinstein offered advice when seeking a business manager: “A good manager will help you by showing you great and successful artists who he wants you to study and understand what makes them popular.”

He added that together, the manager and artist can discuss the artist’s uniqueness that makes the work immediately recognizable and desirable.

To find such a gem, Weinstein suggested artists investigate potential managers to see who they represent, find out what artists have to say about them and visit galleries where they have placed their artists. Educate yourself before hiring their services.

Photographer: Yosi PozeilovEditor: Yosi Pozeilov
Susan Amorde

There is no one size fits all when it comes to business management. Some artists find success combining services from different sources for a custom fit.

Massachusetts artist Steve Lyons ( hired a business mentor and personal friend to manage his day-to-day affairs, a studio assistant and several studio helpers for his day-to-day management. He hired an outside public relations firm to promote his work.

Lyons’ work is rooted in expressionism, and in 2016 he was recognized as one of the top five abstract expressionists painters in the world by American Art Awards, tied with artist Christine Alfery.

“As my career took off I knew that It was necessary to have someone do the day-to-day management and to look for and seize opportunities at other galleries and exhibitions – cultural center, museums, et cetera,” he said.

His current staff makes it possible for him to focus more on his paintings and spend more time with family, as well as seek out and secure venues for him in the U.S. and Europe.

He depends on PR for Artists (, a California-based public relations firm, for media exposure. PR for artists “Built interest in my creative life one publication at a time… They know what to do with information surrounding my life as a painter – whether it is announcing a recent award, new work or a new association with a gallery or exhibitor. That is a great relief,” Lyons said. PR for Artists cofounder Anthony Mora, said artists are charged a monthly retainer fee based on specific needs. Services include public relations, brand development and gallery representation.

Help with developing a prospectus and presentation to galleries is also available. Lyons said he works hand-in-hand with PR for Artists for many of his business and publicity decisions.

“The big decisions require communication between everyone involved in my career,” he said. “We often reach out to PR for Artists for their opinion about decisions, such as exhibitions and shows.”

Mora is the author of two books, Spin to Win: The Essential P.R. Guide for Business and Career Success and The Alchemy of Success: Marketing your Company/Career through the Power of the Media for Achieving Unlimited Success.

A few years ago, Mora and his vice president, Aubrie Wienholt, expanded his 1990 communications business Anthony Mora Communications, Inc., which focuses on authors, filmmakers, musicians and others, to include a division – PR for Artists – concentrating on fine visual artists.

“PR for Artists represents anywhere from 15 to 20 artists at a time and has helped clients be featured in media outlets such as Time, Newsweek, The Today Show and more,” he said.

“That helps stimulate interest and creates buzz. You can then use the media exposure in any and all of the marketing outreach.”

Before considering outside public relations, more recommends artists to do what marketing they can on their own.

“Create a website, get on social media.” He said. “Put their foot in the water. We can help them on all those fronts, but it’s important that we see the artist is making an effort to build a bridge between their art and their audience.”

Mora advices when looking for help, artists should find out exactly what services are being offered.

Look for someone who knows the field, but someone who they can then communicate with and talk to. “You want someone with a track record,” He said. “Someone who has worked in the field for a while.”

If you can’t hire a public relations company, start small by doing your own public relations.

“Do your homework and write a press release, create a media list and start reaching out to the media,” he said. “If you have some funds to invest in your marketing then do it. Don’t go it alone of you don’t have to, bring in a savvy team that is on your side, knows the media, knows how to present you and your work and is prepared to help take you and your career to the next level.” (PA)



1. Know what you want– Kristine Schomaker, owner of Shoebox PR in California, advises artists to have a clear idea of what they want a manager to do, to set a budget for public relations – be it for an exhibition or management – and have at least 15 to 20 pieces of work to present

2. You’ll still have to work – “Be prepared to work,” she said. “It could be photographing your work, applying to shows, doing interviews, traveling and more.”

3. Research the firm – Scrutinize websites and avoid those with too little information or who haven’t posted on social media in recent days, weeks or months.

4. Research the artists the firm represents – “Make sure the artists are legit, professional and serious… make sure a contract is in place.”

5. As friend for recommendations

6. Tap into social media– “Facebook especially is a great place to ask the collective hive mind for recommendations or information on specific artist management companies.”

7. Be easy to work with – “I can’t stress this enough. If you are easy to work with, curators and gallerists will want to work with you too.”

C.M. Schmidlkofer is a journalist who has been a staff reporter at newspapers throughout the Midwest including The Chicago Tribune. She has written for The Crafts Reporter, Fibromyalgia AWARE, National Paralegal Reporter and Stone Voices Magazine.

Shoebox PR at the Annenberg Community Beach House

Kira Vollman. Ascending Intervals. The Neutra Institute Museum & Gallery. May 2017. Photo Credit Kristine Schomaker

Kira Vollman
Ascending Intervals

solo exhibition


The Neutra Institute Museum & Gallery
2379 Glendale Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90039

Opening reception May 13, 6-10pm
On View May 9 – 28, 2017

Artist Talk May 21st 3pm
Moderated by Kristine Schomaker

Facebook event

Los Angeles- Kira Vollman, longtime contributor and collaborator in both the art and experimental music scene in Los Angeles, will present Ascending Intervals a solo exhibition at Neutra Institute and Museum in Silverlake opening May 13th, 6-10pm.

Vollman is a multi-media artist who mixes painting, photography, sculpture, sound and repurposed scrap to create surreal landscapes and soundscapes, sometimes bringing all of these elements together in one piece. Her exhibition at Neutra can be described as having the ability to transform and transcend. The items she uses in her work, whether it be a mundane home decor item or industrial surplus, scrap metal or tree branches waiting for a chipper, all become about personal transformation. The pieces/installation on view takes as its point of departure the idea of the spaces between—between materials, between structures, between thought and between meaning.

Drawing upon her background as a composer and musician, she often incorporates inter-active sonic elements into her installations and wall sculptures. While the title, Ascending Intervals, refers to a musical term for the intervals of a scale from one note to another, Vollman has appropriated the term as a metaphor for ascension which can be applied politically, spiritually, culturally and personally.

Kira Vollman is a Los Angeles based visual and sound/performance artist who is also the co-owner/director/curator at ARK, an Altadena gallery and performance space. She has performed and exhibited her works throughout Southern California, Europe, and Canada. Vollman has been included in exhibitions at Beyond Baroque, Side Street Projects, Armory Center for the Arts, Sylvia White Gallery and Dangerous Curve. Recently Vollman was interviewed by Kara Tome for GYST Radio.

In addition to creating visual works, Vollman has been active in the local experimental/avant-guard/improv music scene for over thirty five years, both as a multi-instrumentalist and a composer. Non Credo has been Vollman’s main musical outlet with her collaborator and fellow multi-instrumentalist Joseph Berardi.

For more information please visit her websites and

Baggage Station

Susan Amorde

“In My Case”

April 29 – June 2
Reception April 29, 6-9 pm

LAAA / Gallery 825
825 North La Cienega Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA

(Los Angeles – March 2017) – For her solo exhibition at LAAA/Gallery 825, Los Angeles based artist Susan Amorde presents an installation of sculptures from her ongoing project which explores the notion of baggage- in all its emotional and physical manifestations. This is best illustrated by the 2014 work, Block and Tackle, 2014, in which Amorde ropes together four vintage suitcases and suspended from the ceiling by a huge pulley and held in place by an anchor. In this work she explores the relationship between floating freely and being tied down. Each suitcase is laden with history and exudes a unique personality. Amorde plays with these tropes, imbuing her works with a sense of nostalgia while simultaneously exploring the more psychological and emotional connotations of baggage.

The works on view range in size and scope— from the intimate to the universal. Baggage Station, 2017 is comprised of more than 50 ownerless cases carefully organized on wooden shelves. In this piece Amorde asks the viewer to imagine their contents as well as their diverse but absent owners. In works such as It’s Time (2014-2017) and Drowning in Indecision 2015 Amorde inserts antique metal portholes into individual cases into which she places small keepsakes that reference the passage of time or the notion of being hooked or captured. These thoughtful works become windows into the souls of the past.

It’s Time

Susan Amorde is a Los Angeles based sculptor and installation artist who received a BFA from California State University, Long Beach. She recently had a residency and solo exhibition at Shoebox Projects, Los Angeles. Her work has been included in local and national exhibitions since 2000. Recent group shows include: Personal Narrative, Annenberg Beach House Gallery, Santa Monica, CA (2017); South Bay Focus, Torrance, Art Museum, Torrance, CA, Zero Down Group Exhibition, 1019West, Inglewood, CA (2016) and the 2015 Los Angeles Exhibition, Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, Barnsdall Park, Los Angeles, CA.

Block and Tackle



LA’s Contemporary Art Scene Just Got More Interesting

New artist residency by Shoebox Projects encourages bold moves from emerging artists

Susan Feldman Tucker and Jennifer Gunlock

Saturday December 3rd 3-6pm

Shoebox Projects (at the Brewery)
660 South Avenue 21 #3
Los Angeles Ca 90031

(Los Angeles) – Los Angeles has a new experimental art space where emerging and mid-career artists have a chance to boldly go where they have never gone before. Shoebox Projects is the latest innovative idea from Kristine Schomaker, multimedia artist and the founder of Shoebox PR, LA’s fastest growing artist marketing agency.

“We wanted to create a space where artists could experiment with new ideas,” said Schomaker. “As an artist myself, I know how hard it can be to create new work in the same space where you’ve always worked. Shoebox Projects is a change of place, a change of energy and, we hope, a new spirit.”

With its first residency underway as of November 1st, the local contemporary art scene can look forward to bold and exciting new work coming out of this space in the Brewery Art Complex. With new projects beginning every month, there will be lots to see and talk about.

Shoebox Project’s first residency is a joint project between mixed media artist Jennifer Gunlock and sculpture artist Susan Feldman. Gunlock holds an MFA from California State, Long Beach. Her work explores the relationship between object of nature and those man made. Feldman whose background is in graphic design, creates 3D structures from wood, yarn, plexiglass and other found materials.

“Both of these women had often discussed somehow finding a way to bring their work together,” said Schomaker, “and now they finally have a chance to create something totally new. I can’t wait to see what they do.”

Schomaker said that a call for artist submissions in September exceeded her expectations. The 12 residency spaces for 2017 were filled within a week. Artists were encouraged to submit work that would foster a large step forward in their career. Each residency will end with a solo show in the where it was created. Visitors are encouraged throughout the period of the residency to engage with the artists and the work as it evolves.