About denise

As both artist and educator, I am a woman of many forms. Given the setting, I change; or rather, I respond. This is a similar retort as to the one I’ve come to ask of my work and pedagogy: to pay attention and adapt. This focus allows for a balance between what I want and what I intend; for my mission is to become familiar of not only my own multitude of forms, but the ones resonating within the students and creative communities I have the opportunity to experience.


It's become apparent through this studio and teaching practice, alongside my recent graduate studies (MA in Art + Design Education, Rhode Island School of Design), that it is not what I am unsure of, it is what I am certain of that pushes me to explore. Art must be accessible. Fostering confidences in our natural creative curiosities has the possibility of relieving the visual arts from a focus on ability and creating a shift. A change in core from acknowledging ability and skill to taking an interest in nurturing what art sincerely creates: relationships to our interactions, to our “lived worlds” that Maxine Greene promoted. As a hybrid educator, I feel I could play a small role to facilitate this change; to find a way to make art accessible to not just the perceived artist, but the whole. I hope to do so by first considering the spaces we inform, the learning environments we create. For I want to develop gathering spaces where our collective curiosities may grow. 

You see, I come from a line of female artists. This sentiment I borrowed from them; the women who taught me art.






M.a. in Art + Design Education , 2018

Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), Providence, RI


B.A. IN Art Studies, 2012

North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC

Selected exhibitions


Contemporary South Exhibition, Visual Art Exchange, Raleigh, NC

“A Sense of Place” 35th Annual Juried Exhibition, Gertrude Herbert Institute of Art, Augusta, GA



Created a series of mixed media paintings and illustrations made up of two prominent mediums: coffee and espresso stains. The medium was used as the sole paint as well as incorporated into oils, acrylics, and alongside ink. This body of work, Coffee & Me, showed continually between 2015 and 2017 in different NC venues


Coffee & Me, DB Sutton & Company,  Chapel Hill, NC


 Coffee & Me, William and Company Bar, Raleigh, NC

 Coffee & Me, Holder Goods & Crafts Gallery, Raleigh, NC                                                  (exhibited with Counter Culture Coffee)

 Coffee & Me, BREW Coffee Bar, Raleigh, NC

 Coffee & Me, William and Company Bar, Raleigh, NC


Coffee & Me, Sola Coffee Cafe, Raleigh, NC

 Coffee & Me, Caffe Driade, Chapel Hill, NC

 Coffee & Me, Alter Ego Stylehouse, Raleigh, NC

 Coffee & Me, Jubala Village Coffee, Raleigh, NC

 Coffee & Me, The Morning Times, Raleigh, NC




CAMstellation, Contemporary Art Museum, Raleigh, NC (with local artists)




Opening Reception Poster Design, Deana Nguyen's Flowers Perishable, The Pink Building, Raleigh, NC


Sensory Garden Proposal Renderings, Contracted Artist, North Carolina Museum of Art

I produced landscape renderings for an NCMA Volunteer Committee. The plans I designed for the discussed Sensory Garden were presented to a member of the museum board and Civitas; the company that is partnered with the NCMA for its upcoming construction and park development.


Logo Design, Oak City Beard & Mustache Assembly, NC

Album Art, Schuyler Mastain, Tongue Tied Twist of Fate, Chapel Hill, NC


Children's Book Illustrator, Milo by Debbie Yow, Raleigh, NC

Selected Representative, Southeastern College Art Conference, Greensboro, NC


Speaker, Arts’ North Carolina State University Annual Gala, Raleigh, NC