We had the good fortune of connecting with Chloë Helen Calthorpe Dillion Stewart and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Chloë Helen Calthorpe Dillion, is your business focused on helping the community? If so, how?
The ultimate manifesto of my work reaches beyond the realm of physicality. I relay madness on a superior level, reflecting my point of view on the experience of mental illness and addiction in two-dimensional and three-dimensional art. My work marries science to spirituality- the essence of the beginning of existence. My art speaks of turmoil in the human soul. Human emotions versus reality in our physical world are seen. The human condition and the human mind are exposed. The fleshly sins of discrimination and stigma are unveiled. The theory of happiness is crushed by my depictions. My art takes note of how suffering and neglected people perceive, think, and feel. The stigmatic perspective that people with addiction and mental illness are defective and worthless needs to be crushed. I destroy the uneducated divide with my passion for change. I initiate an honest conversation about mental health and addiction. I build my art with the goal to instigate the ultimate conversation. If we together, eradicate stigma and create scientific solutions; our families, our communities, and the nation can thrive. I meditate on the similarities, not the differences to expand my transposed artistic visualizations. My art comes to life because it is my spiritual life filled with real existential experiences. My art attacks the challenge, explaining living life in an addicted and bi-polar world filled with multiple human experiences. Cyclical addiction, mania, depression, and hallucinations rule my work. Bright flamboyant coloration describes your feelings and your fears concerning those with addiction and mental illness diseases. Subtle yet violent imagery looms over the viewer, consequently, making them feel mentally ill in a cycle of addictive imagination. They are now in my realm and can imagine what the suffering is like. There is plenty of questions to be asked- why do we handle addiction and mental health so poorly, when our people are suffering? The feelings you receive while emersed in my paintings, installations, and sculptures mirror your human condition. We have all the same commonalities in our nature, our minds, as we are constricted to our human bodies. Some people’s ignorance towards how our fellow humans suffer in many aspects- leads us to erect a concrete wall that divides us. We, humans, created a misunderstood divide. It is as if we are putting up a political wall. Everything looks fine on the outside, but ugliness exists within our layers. Inside and outside people are dying with the afflictions of addiction and mental illness. People need to know we need to change. We need a solution. I am ecstatic about the outcome of three particular series of works I created during my Masters at Houston Baptist University. The titles are; “#ƧTIGMA. Haven’t we got it backwards?” and “Slipping through the Gap- The London Loneliness Series”. And my large-scale installation “Mental Institution Museum” or “Mental Institution Gallery”. All three explore stigma, addiction, mental illness, and suicide with artistic expressions of spirituality, and science.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am a multi-disciplinary artist born in Chertsey, United Kingdom. I was raised in The Hague in The Netherlands, Stavanger in Norway, and New Orleans, Louisiana. I have traveled the world, before finally settling down in Houston, Texas 10 years ago. I was awarded a scholarship to study at Houston Baptist University and graduated with a Master of Fine Arts in Studio Arts. Before my Masters, I graduated with a Bachelor of Studio Art in Painting from The University of Houston. Since then, I have dedicated my time to being a full-time artist. Using my mediums of mixed-media painting, installation spaces, assemblage sculptures, photography, 3D printing technology, and fashion design I explore my experience with mental health, addiction, and domestic violence. I tackle the stigma surrounding mental illness and addiction. In addition, I bring awareness of the rampant occurrence of violence against women and human trafficking, which I have experienced first-hand. I have exhibited my work worldwide. Recently I exhibited my art at Mönchskirche Salzwedel, Germany. On March 6th through March 30th, 2021, I will be exhibiting in an international exhibition named “Ex-Libris” at Redbud Gallery in Houston, Texas. You can find out more information about the “Ex-Libris” exhibition on Redbud Galleries website https://www.redbudgallery.com In 2019 I was accepted into the Artist in Residency program in Splendora Gardens, Splendora Texas. Whilst working in London, UK I was represented by 15FiftyOne Group. Currently, I am working on a virtual exhibition benefiting The Houston Area Women’s Center, in which I was a client in 2013. In addition film director, Jeff Faulkinburry (PostPunk Films) is creating a documentary specifically about my art, message, and life story. The documentary’s title will be released later this year. In spring 2021, I will be featured in Paper City Magazine, and Memorial Lifestyle Magazine. Through applying for my citizenship through the Violence Against Women Act, I live and work as a naturalized U.S Citizen calling Houston, Texas USA my “forever home”.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Cafeza- Cafeza has amazing coffee and famous churros. I recommend trying the chai late and churros with chocolate sauce. In addition, they have a multi-cultural diverse atmosphere, inviting all people to enjoy many genres of music. They specialize in Jazz, down-tempo hip hop, and Latin music with an energetic and at the same time relaxing environment. Cafeza was inspired by the owner’s trip to Spain, so he decided to bring a touch of Spain’s culture to Houston. However, it has spawned into a cross between South American and Spanish musical tastes. The combination of cultures makes an all-inclusive atmosphere for people of all walks of life to chill in. Double Trouble- Double Trouble is a bar with a wide range of craft cocktails and mocktails. Coffee shop by day, and bar at night, it has a great ambiance and is great for any occasion or time of day.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
There are so many I could write a book. Jeff Faulkinburry, a film director who is directing a documentary about my life. Emily Elliott was my mentor. She is a talented personal stylist and fashion guru. You can find her work online at http://www.emilyelliottstyle.com Laura Mashall, my faithful best friend and artist’s assistant. Laura is also a talented jeweler. Also, my talented friend, Naomi Ako helped me as my assistant get through graduate school. Dustin Armstrong my resident photographer who is always down to photograph my work and is incredibly talented. He loves to scale sky-scrapers and photograph cities. I would like to thank my parents for encouraging me into pursuing fine arts, and for all the effort they have put in for me to go the extra mile. And my grandmother for encouraging me to make my dreams a reality. She is a very strong lady and is still alive and kicking at 90 years of age and going strong! She inspires me to be honest and to always put in 100%!

Website: www.chloestew.art
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/chloeartstudio
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/chloeartstudio/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/chloeartstudio
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/chloeartstudio

Image Credits
Dustin Armstrong- Out the Frame Photography

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