The Vision Collection

The University of St. Francis’ Rialto City Center Gallery is pleased to present The Vision Collection an exhibition of work by Mike Kloss and Kate Ruggeri, on view from February 3 through March 15, 2014. Please join us for a reception with the artists on March 19 at 25 E Van Buren, Joliet, IL.

the vision collection

Mike Kloss creates arrangements from materials foraged from alleys, thrift stores and junk shops. His works are in a constant state of flux, momentarily frozen in a particular composition for display, but to return to the chaos of the studio to be re-used and transformed again. Layering paint and materials such as caulk and plastic sheeting, Kloss conceals the original object along with its history to create an aesthetic meditation on the mundane. Tending toward a monochromatic palette, Kloss empties his objects of any trace of emotion or meaning, giving the sense of a sinister joke in his treatment of these mass-consumed, familiar objects. His, at times subtle, interventions attempt to seek an illusive moment of visual harmony.

Kate Ruggeri moves fluidly between painting and sculpture, criss-crossing these mediums in infinite combinations. Densely layered paint becomes a surface to carve into while discarded furniture remnants are converted into the canvas for a painting. Ruggeri continuously works and re-works the discarded and reclaimed materials she has at hand, repeatedly degrading and re-building her “conglomerate paintings.” Her physical relationship to this process informs the direction of each piece. Striking a tenuous balance between abstract and representational forms, Ruggeri allows a rough narrative to take shape without premeditation. Through an impulse toward mark making, she creates a visual language of personal symbols cloaked in layers of material.

Mike Kloss is co-curator of The Hills Esthetic Center an artist run space in Chicago IL. He received his B.F.A. in sculpture from The Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design in 2004. Michael grew up in the north woods of Wisconsin, hunting and fishing. Currently he hunts for materials for his sculptures, arrangements, and soundwork in the streets, alleys and thrift stores of Chicago. Using materials such as used socks, coral, discarded packaging etc., anything is a material and anyplace can hold an item or material used in his works.

More information about Mike Kloss can be found at

Kate Ruggeri (b.1988) is a Chicago-based artist, DJ, and curator. Kate has shown at various galleries including Ebersmoore (Chicago), Green Gallery East (Milwaukee), Western Exhibitions (Chicago), and Important Projects (Oakland). In 2013, Kate was an artist-in-residence at Ox-Bow School of Art on a Joan Mitchell Scholarship. She also co-curated “Quarterly Site 11: Line-of-Site” at Western Exhibitions. Kate received her BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2010.

More information about Kate Ruggeri can be found at