Ahavani Mullen

Chicago, IL  773.960.4149  .   ahavani@gmail.com

Ahavani Mullen is a visual artist who works in a variety of media, constructing paintings, images and 2.5-dimensional objects that have evolved from silence. Rooted in a contemplative journey that spans over two decades, her work navigates a space between the seen and the unseen, and serves as a record of the intangible. Ahavani is honored by having received awards from James Rondeau, Director of the Art Institute of Chicago, as well as grants from 3Arts, the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs, multiple grants from the Illinois Arts Council, and was recently awarded a residency at the Vermont Studio Center. Her most recent solo exhibitions in Illinois include those at Olivet Nazarene University, South Suburban College and Morpho Gallery. Her work has been exhibited in galleries and museums nationally and internationally, and is included in numerous private and public collections. She is represented by Circa Gallery in Minneapolis and Chicago Art Source Gallery. She balances her full time studio practice with teaching. Born in Minneapolis, MN, she received a B.A. from Macalester College in St. Paul, MN in 1996. Ahavani is currently based in Chicago.

Solo Exhibitions
2019    Chicago Art Source Gallery, Chicago, IL (forthcoming)
2018    Festival, One River School, Evanston, IL
2016    Ocean Inside the Drop, Olivet Nazarene University, Bourbonnais, IL 
2015    Here and Now, South Suburban College, South Holland, IL
2013    Silence Speaks, Morpho Gallery, Chicago

Two Person Exhibitions

2017    Ahavani Mullen + Lindsy Halleckson, CIRCA Gallery, Minneapolis, MN
2015    Elements of Light, Brickton Art Gallery, Park Ridge, IL

Grants / Awards / Residencies

     Vermont Studio Center residency, Johnson, VT
     Artist Grant, Vermont Studio Center
     Illinois Arts Council Grant
     3rd Place for Above, ArtFutura, Northwestern University Lurie Center, awarded by James Rondeau,          Director, Art Institute of Chicago
     3Arts Artist Project Award, 3Arts, Chicago, IL
     Individual Artists Program Grant Award, Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special                        Events, Chicago, IL
     First Prize for Mountain Silence, Encaustic Nature in Art, The Art Center - Highland Park, IL
     Second Prize for Tenderly, Wax Effects, Art Central Gallery, San Luis Obispo, CA
     Illinois Arts Council Grant for Professional Development
     Award of Excellence for Winter, Small Art Big Impact Exhibition, Manhattan Art International, NY
     First Prize for Tenderly, Fluidity, Union Street Gallery, Chicago Heights, IL
     Special Merit Award for Calling You, Abstract Art Competition, Light Space & Time Gallery
     Special Recognition Artist in Painting, Seasons Art Competition, Light Space & Time                   Gallery

Selected Exhibitions

   Rockford Midwestern Biennial, Rockford Art Museum, Rockford, IL (juror Aron Packer)
   Bold Boho, Circa Gallery, Minneapolis, MN
   Summer Show, Chicago Art Source Gallery
   Summer Salon, CIRCA Gallery, Minneapolis, MN
   New Horizons, Chicago Art Source Gallery, Chicago, IL
   Encaustic 2017: Rebirth of an Ancient Medium (invitational), Bridgeport Art Center, Chicago, IL
   Diffused Surface (invitational), Gallery 201, Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, IL
   Winter Salon, CIRCA Gallery, Minneapolis, MN
   New Works by Gallery Artists, Chicago Art Source Gallery, Chicago, IL
   Summer Salon, CIRCA Gallery, Minneapolis, MN
   Winter Salon, Chicago Art Source Gallery, Chicago, IL
    ArtFutura, Northwestern University Lurie Center, juried by James Rondeau, Director, Art Institute of        Chicago
    Another Way of Keeping a Diary, San Luis Obispo Museum of Art, San Luis Obispo, CA    
    New Works by Gallery Artists, Chicago Art Source Gallery, Chicago, IL
    Expansive Visions, Christopher Art Gallery, Prairie State College, Chicago Heights, IL
    12th Annual Regional Juried Exhibition, Freeport Art Museum, Freeport, IL
    Honouring Pollinators, Alton Mill Art Centre, Caledon, Ontario, Canada
    Textual Encounters, ARC Gallery, Chicago, IL 
    Winter Salon, Chicago Art Source Gallery, Chicago, IL
     Abstract Sanctuary, Verum Ultimum Gallery, Portland, OR 
    Wax Effects, Art Central Art Gallery, San Luis Obispo, CA
    Encaustic Nature in Art, The Art Center, Highland Park, IL.
    Unbound(ed), Morpho Gallery, Chicago
    Fused, Union Street Gallery, Chicago Heights, IL
    Small Art Big Impact, Manhattan Arts International, New York
    The Diptych Project, Engine Gallery,Biddeford, ME
    Green, Fine Arts Building, Chicago
    Minute Musings, Union Street Gallery, Chicago Heights, IL
     National Juried Encaustic Exhibition, Encaustic Art Institute, Santa Fe, NM
     Seven, 7th International Encaustic Conference, Truro Center for the Arts at Castle Hill, Truro,                        MA (Juror: Shawn Hill, critic Art New England)
    Fluidity, Union Street Gallery, Chicago Heights, IL
    Miniatures, Linus Galleries, Los Angeles, CA 
    6x6x2013, Rochester Contemporary Art Center, Rochester, NY
    Abstract II, Brickton Art Center, Park Ridge, IL
    12th Annual Art Inter/National Exhibition, Box Heart Gallery, Pittsburgh
    WAX(in') Blue, Morpho Gallery, Chicago
    Growth, Expansion Gallery, Lacuna Artist Lofts, Chicago
    FusedChicago 3, Fine Arts Building, Chicago
    8th Annual Emerging Artist Exhibition, Morpho Gallery, Chicago
    Introspect, Arterie Fine Arts, Naperville, IL
    Abstract, Light Space Time Gallery, Jupiter, FL
    Repurposed, University of Maryland, Rockville MD
    Rhythm in Wax, Norris Cultural Arts Gallery, St. Charles, IL
    Sacred Spaces, The Art Center - Highland Park, IL
    Encaustic, Fine Line Creative Arts Center, St. Charles, IL
    Tactile Encounters, Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago
    The Buzz, Zhou B Art Center, Chicago
    ReInvention, ARC Gallery, Chicago, IL
    Morsels, AnySquared Projects, Chicago
    For the Love of Paint!, Flow Art Space, Minneapolis
    Painting: Color Dominates, Evans Encaustics, Sonoma, CA
    Seasons, Light Space Time Gallery, Jupiter, FL
    The Abstract Show, Brickton Art Center, Park Ridge, IL
     Age 1.5 and Up, Prak-sis Gallery, Chicago
     Resident Artists Exhibition, Space/Division, Chicago, IL

Selected Bibliography

     Still Point X, Still Point Arts Quarterly
      Encaustic Arts magazine, Spring 2017, featured artist
     Studio Visit Magazine, Volume 28, Juror: Carl Belz, Rose Art Museum, Director Emeritus, Brandeis              University, Waltham, MA
    Here and Now by Ahavani Mullen, SSC360, Bulldog Bites video interview
    Elements of Light, What’s Your Process, Artguardian
     The Diptych Project II: A Collaboration in Wax - New England Wax + FUSEDChicago,
          Dietlind Vander Schaaf
    Ahavani Mullen, YoungSpace Art Blog, Kate Mothes
    Collaboration and Inspiration: The Diptych Project II, Below the Surface Blog, New
        England Wax
     Ahavani Mullen, Featured Artist Interview, FUSEDChicago, Oct. 28, 2013
    Panorama Arts Magazine, Tenderly, August
     Natura Viva, Making Something out of Nothing, Debra Claffey Art Blog
    Repurposed: Earth-Friendly Art, Exhibition Catalogue
    Ahavani Art Studio Encaustic Paintings, Encaustic Art Blog, Cherie McClelland Smith
    The Abstract Show, Chicago Tribune, Trib Local Park Ridge, June 28, 2012

Selected Collections

Museum of Encaustic Art, Santa Fe, NM
Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, NV
Million Dollar Round Table, Executive Suite, Park Ridge, IL
Rochester Contemporary Art Center, Rochester, NY
Other private and corporate collections

Curatorial Projects

The Abstract Show IV, Juror, Brickton Art Gallery, Park Ridge, IL, 2016

Teaching Experience

Oakton Community College, Des Plaines, IL, Visiting Instructor
Prak-sis Gallery, Chicago, Encaustic Painting Instructor
Arterie Fine Arts, Naperville, IL, Encaustic Painting Instructor
Ahavani Studio, Chicago, Art Instructor


Macalester College, St. Paul, MN, B.A., (cum laude) 1996
University College London, University of London, England 1994
Advanced Encaustic Teacher Training with Shawna Moore, Whitefish, MT, 2014


CIRCA Gallery, Minneapolis, MN
Chicago Art Source Gallery, Chicago, IL
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