Common Ground strives to be the center of a vibrant inclusive community and one that is alive with art.
Our gallery is located in our highly utilized Flatlander Classroom, a space dedicated to connecting the community, facilitating educational opportunities focusing on healthy living, and providing access to local artists. This multi-use space is ideal for integrating the arts into the urban environment and creating partnerships among artists, the community, and businesses.
Current Local Artist: Laurent Souqui
I wanted to paint since I was a child, but it took me 20 years and the realization that it would not happen unless I try by myself to finally begin in 2016 in Linköping, Sweden. Since then I have been experimenting quite a bit with acrylic paint. Here are some of the pieces I made since I moved to Urbana in 2020, I thank Common Ground Food Co-Op for giving me the opportunity to show them to the world. Most of my previous work can be seen at http://www.behance.net/lausopaintingproject/
Art is a world of infinite dimension, the tiny portion of which each can access being constrained by the limitations of the human as an individual. Akin to an explorer, I take on the mental journey to go beyond my own boundaries and hope to come back with something to share with others in the so-called "real" world, whether it is to make people smile, reflect or to bring awareness.
I think that most important is the process, as each project starts as a new challenge, with its questions and reflections, and often involving innovative techniques and approaches, ultimately becomes a stepping-stone, for myself but also for others. No matter the result, this inevitably leads to positive growth as a human being, which is a goal that, I believe, anyone as a human should strive towards.
I tend to separate my works into small projects comprising 5-7 pieces. Most of my work involves abstract painting with acrylic on a canvas, nevertheless, each of these projects involces experimenting with various techniques, themes, and approaches.
En quête du silence (2021-2022)
(In the pursuit of silence)
The conceptual project focuses on silence, and the power it arries how it can make us more serein, meditative, thoughtful, and focused. White painting these, I tried my best to screen off external sources of sound and noise as possible. The inspirations for this project are at the crossroads of time, space, and mind.
This project is a synthesis of several different approaches I explored over the years. They express through landscapes different aspects of the human experience that are diffuclt to grasp such as luck or ill omen as well are some of the more vivid emotions such as indignation or outrage.
Monochromes 1: Horisons Urbains (2022)
(Monochromes 1: Urban Horizons)
This project is a geometic exploration in which skylines are abstracted and minimized to single-colored lines and geometical objects, letting the viewer compensate for the missing information.
"Breaking Point" (10.5" x 8.75", $85) by Laurent Souqui
"Sérénité dans la tempête" (16.5" x 11.625", $135) by Laurent Souqui
"Lucky Day" (11"x14", $120) by Laurent Souqui
Visit the Flatlander Classroom and Art Gallery to view the rest of Laurent Souqui's installation. All pieces are availble for purchase. To purchase artwork please contact us and we will put you in contact with the artist.
Local Food For All Mural
This project was funded by a 2021 grant from the Urbana Arts and Culture Program and the mural was designed and painted by local artist, Madelyn Witruk. The mural encapsulates images of the local food movement, food access, diversity of Urbana residents, cultural cuisines, and highlights imagery from our local farms, like Blue Moon Farm, Sola Gratia Farm, and Prairie Fruits Farm & Creamery. This artwork aims to serve as a celebration of Urbana's uniqueness, including its strong local food system, its vibrant art community, and its warm, inclusive culture.
Call for Local Artist
We are always looking to install new local artists in our Art Gallery.