Brought as a baby to England by well-traveled parents, Julie Puma spent her first 14 years there with summers spent in her native Brooklyn. Her earliest memory of art is at age five when her mother gave her a set of oil paints which she used to paint a flower on a Styrofoam meat package. Only a year later her mother would pass away from breast cancer. Her father remarried and his work with IBM moved Julie, her sister, and the new family back to the United States where they settled in the Chicago area. An interest in art wasn’t apparent in high school, but after graduating from Western Illinois State University, Julie went on to The School of the Art Institute of Chicago to achieve a Masters of Art in Art Therapy. Her passion for painting was kindled as she practiced art therapy while experiencing its healing powers for herself and deepening her own creative talent.
Julie made her way to Colorado to care for her sister who was also afflicted with breast cancer. Here she met her husband, gave birth to a daughter, and continued to refine and cultivate her artistic growth. Fueled by her family tragedies, Julie’s painting and art evolved as a means for greater communication and exploration of social and political themes. She earned a second Master’s degree in Fine Art in Visual Art with the Vermont College of Fine Art. Currently, Julie is a full-time Faculty Member in Foundations at Rocky Mountain College of Art + Design in Denver. Julie’s work has been exhibited nationally and locally in several solo and collaborative shows since 1997. Prized by collectors, her drawings and paintings are personal and powerful, resonant and relevant contemporary realism.
Noticing the way in which her teen-aged daughter communicates almost completely in imagery instead of words through the popular social media platform, Snapchat, inspired Julie to give substantive form through oil paintings and drawings to those urgent, ten-second disappearing screen captures. In creating tangible, preserved art from those rapidly fleeting images, their urgency is slowed to offer closer contemplation and context.
Recent Exhibitions, Significant Work, or Publications:
- 2018 Western Colorado Center For the Arts, Grand Junction, CO
- 2017 Firehouse Art Center, Longmont, CO
- 2016 Urgent Importance , Rude Gallery, Denver, CO
ART 1140 – Painting I, ART 2100 Professional Practice Survey: Voice + Vision (formerly ART 2000 – Fine Arts Sophomore Portfolio Review), ART 2240 – Painting II, ART 3240 – Painting III, ART 3301 – Special Topics in Fine Arts, ART 3500 – Experimental Studies, ART 3601 – Fine Arts Internship Part I, ART 3602 – Fine Arts Internship Part II, ART 4740 – Painting Advanced Studio, ART 4770 – Sculpture Advanced Studio, ART 4803 – Senior Studio I, ART 4804 – Senior Studio II, FD 1120 – Topics in Color, FD 1235 – Observational Drawing, FD 1370 – Life Drawing I, FD 1380 – Life Drawing II, FD 1600 – Studio Seminar: Methods of Inquiry, FD 2510 – Special Topics