Meet the Mentors | Kathryn Satoh, Linden Eller, and Heather Laurel Jensen

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The COUNTERCLOCK Arts Collective is a fellowship program that allows creative writers, visual artists, and musicians to explore, illuminate, and grow through collaborating on interdisciplinary projects.

Fellows participate in a free 4-week collaborative program, connect with talented and passionate peers, have around-the-clock access to highly accomplished mentors, and are eligible for a monetary stipend to help them pursue projects and arts-related initiatives.

To apply for the fellowship or for more information, visit here.

Meet Kathryn Satoh (music), Linden Eller (visual art), and Heather Laurel Jensen (creative writing), three mentors for the 2019 COUNTERCLOCK Arts Collective.

CAC: What themes have you always aimed to explore with your art? What is a topic you want to explore with your art, but haven’t yet?

KS: I always incorporate a few themes:

1. Past, present, future are critical to each other.

2. Unattainable can sometimes simply mean unsupported.

3. Communication is a dance of speaking and listening.

Topics I’d love to explore:

1. Memory is always colored by perception.

2. Communication is sometimes only possible at specific moments.

LE: I’ve always pursued themes of memory and how to visually represent such a complex and ever shifting concept. Within that topic, I’ve wanted to specifically explore “collective memory” – where our individual memory overlaps with others and what exists in that shared space. Unfortunately I haven’t had the proper time yet to do this.

HLJ: I write a lot about adolescence, about the desert, really about the experiences I have had and the settings I have been in. What most poets write about, I imagine. I definitely want to explore deeper, more abstract ideas with my art, to try and go beyond just my own personal experience — recently I have been thinking about trying out visual arts and bought a pack of eight body forms to both use in sculpture and for fashion design. I’m really excited about that.

Ms. Satoh playing the violin, alongside Ms. Newkirk playing the piano, to perform Milhaud’s Sonata No. 2 for Violin and Piano in 2016. Ms. Satoh and Ms. Newkirk form the violin-piano duo “Bow & Hammer” and will be mentoring music for the Arts Collective this summer.

CAC: If you have one piece of advice for emerging artists, what would it be?

KS: Welcome/seek resistence and affirmation equally while exploring which niche is yours. Most people are prone to accepting one more than the other, but they often go hand in hand when developing your voice. As your database of feedback grows, you’ll gain insight to yourself and what you prioritize.

LE: Keep going. Just keep going.

HLJ: I think there’s a difference between artists who are emerging and artists who are looking to progress. For an artist who is emerging I would say to submit work to as many places as you can. But for an artist who is looking to get better as their main priority, rather than worrying about publication, I would say to consume as much as possible and to create as much as possible. Investing yourself into your own art field is the best advice I can give.

Take a look at Linden and Heather’s work here.

CAC: If you were to summarize your latest work/project in less than ten words, what would they be?

KS: Associating classical music with the sense of taste/smell/touch.

LE: Yellow, incorporating paint, a lot to let go of.

HLJ: “It was due last month, but I have time.” It was a poem I had to write for a performance, and I wasn’t happy with any drafts of it, including the one I actually performed. But that is okay.

CAC: If you could have dinner with any artistic figure from any time period, what would you eat and with whom?

KS: Tough question. Whoever I met, I’d like to eat a normal run-of-the-mill meal with them, just as they would usually eat. In terms of person, it would be really interesting to meet with someone from ancient Greece or someone today from a tribal community, when/where systems of art integration and priorities of lifestyle are completely different.

LE: Mark Rothko, olives.

HLJ: I don’t know if I really have one artistic icon that I feel strong enough about to request them specifically, — or, if I do, I wouldn’t want to inflict myself upon them. I think I would choose to go out for lunch with Edna St. Vincent Millay, and I would definitely have some sort of soup, because that is the easiest thing to eat without it getting messy.

CAC: What are you most looking forward to as an Arts Collective mentor?

KS: I can’t wait to learn how new artists see their world, and promote dialogue regarding our effectivity as a network of artists!

LE: Hopefully providing the kind of encouragement and critical insight that helps new artists move forward with confidence in their work.

HLJ: Getting to read lots of written work that will hopefully surprise and excite me!

Learn more about the Arts Collective here.

Apply to the Arts Collective here.

About the Mentors

Kathryn Satoh | Illinois, USA

Kathryn Satoh is impassioned by genuine and purposeful human connectivity, and uses these characteristics to drive her artistic career. Ms. Satoh is co-founder and violinist of her primary ensemble Bow & Hammer, curating new performance series which affirm the relevance of classical music in mainstream social interaction. She has held faculty and/or administrative positions at many music schools throughout Chicagoland, and maintains a private violin studio throughout Chicagoland. With Bow & Hammer, she acts as a guest lecturer and collaboration coach, and has individually adjudicated various festivals and competitions. Ms. Satoh holds two Bachelor of Music degrees with distinction from the University of Colorado in Violin and Voice Performance under the teaching of Lina Bahn (Corigliano Quartet) and Patrick Mason.

Linden Eller | Arizona, USA

Born in 1984, Linden spent her youth in the urban Sonoran desert of Phoenix, Arizona before moving to Southern California to obtain her BA in Studio Art. This primary interest in place and self-archival attracted her to the collage medium. Blending autobiographical narratives with larger collective subjects such as childhood, longing, and place, Linden thinks of her collages as layered field recordings that represent multiple interpretations and perspectives of the same story. Linden’s work has been mentioned online in Frankie Yen magazines, and been included in numerous publications such as Collage by Woman: 50 Essential Contemporary ArtistsCreate!, Inside Artists, Making The Cut Vol. 1, and Art Ascent. Recent residencies include Dar Slimane (Morocco), La Filature des Calquières (France), Tenjinyama Art Studio (Japan), and more.

Heather Laurel Jensen | Arizona, USA

Heather Laurel Jensen is a junior at Red Mountain High School in Mesa, Arizona. She serves as National Student Poet of the Southwest 2018, and is co-president of Creative Youth of Arizona, an LLC which assists with the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards in Arizona and administers the Phoenix Youth Poet Laureate program. Her poetry, short stories, and photography have been published by the Alliance for Young Artists and Writers, Best Teen Writing of Arizona, diode poetry journal, Polyphony HS, and the Blue Marble Review, among others.

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Patrick Tong is the outreach director for the Arts Collective. He is a high school junior from the northern suburbs of Chicago. His work has been recognized by the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, the Poetry Society of the UK, and appears in Eunoia Review and Rising Phoenix Review. Besides reading for COUNTERCLOCK, he currently serves as an Executive Editor for Polyphony H.S. and a copy editor for its affiliated blog, Voices.