The Rapidian

Teresa Z Illustration debuts at The Market

This dispatch was added by one of our Nonprofit Neighbors. It does not represent the editorial voice of The Rapidian or Community Media Center.

Local artist shares her story and her excitment about The Market
The "studio" of Teresa Z

The "studio" of Teresa Z /Courtesy of the artist

Underwriting support from:

The Market returns with two different days to enjoy this year!

June 8th and July 13th, the sidewalks along S. Division between Fulton and Cherry will be vibrant and lively with an street style artist market, open gallery spaces and live entertainment. This event features local handmade goods, artists, entertainers and local businesses.  Interested vendors can learn more by visiting the WEBSITE, joining on FACEBOOK or emailing [email protected]. Want to volunteer? Visit this link to sign up!

/courtesy of the artist


Teresa Z is excitedly getting ready to show at her first art market of the summer: The Market Presented by Avenue for the Arts. Since graduating from GVSU with a BFA in sculpture, she had taken a break from creating art and has spent the majority of her time farming and working in the non-profit sector. After this short hiatus from being an active artist, 2013 has become the year for her to re-visit her artistic life and launch her business, Teresa Z. Illustration. She explains, “After art school, I needed a break from making art. But the more I was away from it, the more I realized how important art is to have around to remind you of people, places and about things that are bigger than yourself. That realization was huge for me because, in appreciating the work of others I could better appreciate the kind of art I was inclined to make.”

A group show at Pub 43 last fall really put the fire under her, and helped her “finally finish” some drawings she had started to make while finishing up her sculpture thesis.


“I didn’t know what to do with them at the time,” she confesses. “They didn’t fit in with the fine art world the way I saw it. But I really, really loved them and it was such an eye opening experience to just trust that, and put them on the wall.”


The Pub 43 show, “Promises, Promises and Stories to Tell”, was co-curated by Annamarie Buller and Ruby Miller, and featured what would become for her a somewhat iconic jackalope theme. Since that show, she has also finished a commissioned mural for the Silver Spork food truck, and participated in Art.Downtown with Generation XY, where middle school art students were matched with a diverse group of professional artists in the community as a learning opportunity. In addition, her clocks are for sale at the UICA Shop until the end of May.


The local art community, including the Avenue for the Arts and Art.Downtown, have played an Important role in her artistic development. 106’s Open Studio night, and events like Art.Downtown and The Market are inclusive and easy to participate in as an emerging or established artist.

“These events are an opportunity to put my artwork into the world in between all my odd jobs and everything else I have to do to stay alive.” She says.You get a really wonderful deadline that pushes you to make a lot of work and put it out there. The littlest things can open people to ideas and conversations that otherwise wouldn’t come up. With art you just have to throw yourself out there and risk a little bit of failure.”


Through these efforts her artistic goal is, “To end up with art that almost anyone can relate to...not because it has "no content" but rather because it takes threads from all over the place.” She elaborates about her process, “This may seem something of a surprise because my illustrations are made in a very traditional way, with a very traditional purpose: they're pen and ink, I use watercolor... but I’ve been really interested lately in adorable animal memes on the internet.”


This not just an excuse to watch goats yelling over top of Bon Jovi. She says that she takes visual cues from these videos, and mash them up with half-remembered mythologies, art history lessons, movies and cartoons from childhood, illustrations from the turn of the century, and "the cool kids" of street art and graphic novels.


At The Market, you can expect Teresa Z’s booth to be filled with clocks, functional art and greeting cards featuring adorable animals for everyone’s taste. “I’ve been trying to think more about being present and grateful and appreciating things for what they are. There are things that are adorable and inspiring and beautiful and funny, and it just feels good to look at them.” You can get a look yourself June 8th and July 13th from 12pm-8pm at The Market along Division Avenue.


The Rapidian, a program of the 501(c)3 nonprofit Community Media Center, relies on the community’s support to help cover the cost of training reporters and publishing content.

We need your help.

If each of our readers and content creators who values this community platform help support its creation and maintenance, The Rapidian can continue to educate and facilitate a conversation around issues for years to come.

Please support The Rapidian and make a contribution today.

Comments, like all content, are held to The Rapidian standards of civility and open identity as outlined in our Terms of Use and Values Statement. We reserve the right to remove any content that does not hold to these standards.