Hank Kunath, Mixed Media Artist, Jewelry Designer, Concept Designer
Acrylic Paint, Graphite, Mixed Media
In visual arts, Hank Kunath - Born in Oak Park, Illinois, an enlightened suburb of Chicago where Ernest Hemingway and Frank Lloyd Wright gave one a sense of artistic focus. Art became realized, from Rush Street, the Art Institute to the Field Museum. I grew there, absorbed by the cultural environment. Years later in Texas, the monumental horizon and big sky of the west provided a path toward the basic sense of the visual. The west became the course of artistic inspiration with annual travels to that vast visual experience.
Studying art at the University of Tennessee, bachelor of arts with a concentration in drawing, painting, and art history and Murray State University, master of arts in studio arts with a concentration in printmaking and art history, I found direction as an artist. Early in my university studies relationships were developed through dedicated faculty, George Cress, Chairman, bringing me into contact with artists Carl Holty, Karl Knaths, and Lamar Dodd. My understanding of color, composition, and approach to the fragmentation and pattern of shape in nature placed me significantly on the road to a conceptual interpretation of the visual.
My career has embraced many directions. After completing an undergraduate degree, I taught as a traveling art teacher under President Johnson’s War on Poverty legislation. My student’s creativity was unprecedented and their talent followed. The need to create was natural. A brush, pencil, or a box of found objects was just the vehicle. To further develop my artistic and teaching skills, studies began on a graduate degree. On completion of the degree, a position was accepted as an art director of children’s magazines in the publishing industry. The experience of directing 13 designers and 60 publications gave a broad base as an artist, teacher, and mentor. A change in career gave the opportunity to work as a representative for German companies in the graphic arts industry, which included teaching regional seminars and ultimately challenging artists to believe in the new era of electronic color imaging. Later as an assistant professor of art at Kennesaw State University, I developed a critical thinking focused curriculum based on dynamic student, professor interaction enabling art students to address their visual experience. While teaching at Kennesaw State University, I directed the study abroad program to Oaxaca, Mexico, which later developed as a business, providing a multicultural art program both in contemporary and indigenous settings for young and accomplished artists. As a customer, Mount Vernon Presbyterian School contracted my wife and me to take 20 tenth graders to Oaxaca to study art, Mexican history and engage in mission work. Through the Oaxaca trip a relation developed with Mount Vernon Presbyterian School where I was hired to develop the MVPS Visual Arts Program. With consideration, much needs to be done in regard to teaching art. The impact that art has on academic studies is relevant in critical and analytical thinking skill development, as well as opening avenues for artists to study art as a discipline. In pursuing the doctor of educational leadership with a specialization in curriculum and instruction, University of Phoenix, I believe that an impact can be made.
Currently, I am the arts chairperson and art teacher at Mount Vernon Presbyterian School, involved in the arts community, and participant in art workshops, giving me the opportunity to work alongside other artists and grow in the arts. My artist wife and I work out of our Roswell, Georgia Lucky Dog Art Studio actively creating that magic that artists do.