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Newsmaker: Evan Church

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Evan Church joined the artist-in-residence program at the Union Project in Highland Park this month. During his four-month stay, Church will work on his current series of watercolor and oil paintings depicting life on East Africa’s Swahili coast.

'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

By Megan Harris
Friday, Sept. 20, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
 

Noteworthy: Church joined the Union Project for a four-month residency art program through December. It will expand an ongoing series of watercolor and oil paintings depicting life on East Africa's Swahili Coast. Church will pursue a new art form, ceramics, and hold open studio hours at Union Project. The center supports arts, enterprise and events for Pittsburgh's East End neighborhoods. Church will host studio hours this month from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays and Wednesdays 7 to 9 p.m. to discuss his artwork and techniques.

Age: 42

Residence: Highland Park

Background: Church worked in Africa as an aid worker for multiple humanitarian organizations and spent three months backpacking along the Swahili coast, mainly in Zanzibar. The people he met during this time greatly influenced his artwork, he said. Through these experiences, Church developed an interest in creating sustainable businesses that are environmentally and socially conscious and focused on supporting creative outlets and personal expression for Africans through art.

Education: Bachelor's degree in fine arts from Spring Arbor University

Quote: “As an American raised in Malawi, Zimbabwe, and Kenya, I've grown up between cultures. Everything I do is a communication between the two primary cultures in my life, Western and African.”

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