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Craig Cheply


Professional artist- Muralist, Contemporary Realist, Scenic Artist for the T.V., Stage and Movie industries.

 “As we go about our daily rituals, we obviously look at and see many things. Some events register in our memories while others do not. Of the “things” that register, have we done a close observational view or just take the visual information for granted? Some artists are content to work with one subject, group of colors, or time/lighting condition repetitiously, giving them an identifiable “look” desired by art galleries and museums for marketing purposes. I consider myself a visual journalist always embracing the challenge to render the endless variety of subject matters in various media, time/lighting conditions therefore allowing both myself and the viewer a greater scope and appreciation of the fine art interaction experience.”  2007 AZ. Governor’s Arts Awards Nominee.   Represented by: Vision Gallery, Chandler- Az.

Craig Cheply is both a commercial (Artist Environs LLC) and fine artist. His Contemporary Realism paintings are inspired by observations of the certain elements pertaining to the lighting, colors and textures of the Southwest environment and other travels. Craig’s focus on Southwestern skies, landscapes and flora captures his vision while also addressing social, political and environmental issues related to the dramatic population growth in the region and beyond. Permanent solo mural and scenic work of his can be viewed at the Arizona Museum of Natural history, formally Mesa Southwest Museum. In 2003 he put on the largest solo documented museum exhibit (in scope and scale) of any kind in AZ.’s state history utilizing his 8 commissioned murals (now 10) plus 27 of Contemporary Realism paintings for the theme of the show. The “Dawn to Dawn-Past, Present, Possible Futures” exhibit not only visually and verbally represented the murals and fine art showing the different subject matters and times during the 24 hour day, but also the “dawning” of natural and un-natural evolutions that have taken place in history and are still in flux. The murals are "American Lion", "Desert Walk", "Dinosaur Mountain", "Triassic Forest", "Mosasaur", "Metoposaur", “Kenyata”, “Tropical Deciduous Forest”, “Hands on Discovery Center”, “Mesa Grande Ruins”, collaborative work in the "Paleoseas" Diorama. He was one of two muralists chosen out of 35 Az. applicants to work with the New York City based Evergreen Painting Studios team to paint 10,000 square feet of murals on the west side entrance in the Bank One Ballpark in 1998 now renamed Chase Field. Educated at F.I.T. (A.A.S.) and Pratt Institute in New York, he received his B.F.A. in Interior Design from Arizona State University in 1980. He has done set design, scenic and special effect painting for the theatrical, motion picture, television and entertainment industries (member of I.A.T.S.E. local 485 since 1994). Craig has worked on scenic teams for the features “Piranha-3D”, “Middlemen”, “Young Americans”, “The Kingdom”, "Three Kings", "Buffalo Soldiers", "Beastmaster II and III", "Four Eyes and Six Guns", and "Harley-Davidson and the Marlboro Man” plus others. He continues to create his visual journalistic Contemporary Realism fine art, custom murals, trompe l'oeil, faux effects for the residential, institutional, and commercial environments along with having self published limited ed. prints of some of his fine art available for purchasing. Please just Google his name for more worldly info. and feedback…   Studio visit by appointment only.

Juried Group Exhibits:

2013: Brooklyn-BWAC Wide Open4 juror- Carrie Springer curator Whitney Museum,  South Arkansas Art Center juror-David Houston-director Bo Bartlett Art Center, Story of the Creatives jurors: See.Me staff, Maryland Federation of  Art-American Landscapes juror- Denise Carvalho,  ArtPrize 5 Grand Rapids MI venue exhibiting –The B.O.B

2012:  AZ Landscapes- Celebration of AZ Century Statehood  Tempe Center for the Arts juror-Michelle Dock, BWAC 3- Wide Open juror: Charlotta Kotik  former curator Brooklyn Museum of Art,  Viridian Artists 23rd Annual Intl. Directors Choice Powerpoint Presentation- juror Vernita Nemec,  ArtPrize 4: Venue -The B.O.B. Grand Rapids, MI,  Vision Gallery TTGBitN juried exhibit 

2011: BWAC Wide Open 2 Brooklyn, NY, juror: Nathan Trotman- Guggenheim Museum, ArtPrize 3-venue The B.O.B., Grand Rapids, MI

2010: BWAC Wide Open Brooklyn, NY (Co-winner-People’s Choice Award),  jurors: Anne Strauss -Met. Museum of Art NY, Mark Hughes- Galerie LeLong NY, Bill Murphy- Prof. Wagner College NY.  Viridian Artists NYC  21st Annual  juror: Elisabeth Sussman-Whitney Museum

2009: Tempe, AZ. Mill Ave. Post Office-“Eco-Friendly”, Sundust Gallery AZ.

2008: Shemer Museum, AZ. “Landscaped” juror Lindsay Palmer. “Art for Health-Breaking The Cycle” juror Gail Peterson, Herberger Theater, AZ “Garden of the Soul” juror Joan Thompson. Tempe Center for the Arts, AZ. “Masters of Illusion” jurors: Michelle Dock, Larry Yanez. Tempe Public Library, AZ “Valley Stories”, “Flowers & Fauna” jurors: Michelle Dock, Larry Yanez.

Artoconecto, “A-B(o)MB!”, Miami, FL jurors: Claire Breukel, Jen Stark, Byron Peck, Annie Warton.

2007: Coos Art Museum, OR, juror: Amy Pence-Brown -Boise Art Museum. ViridianArtists Gallery NY City affiliate member  group exhibit. “WaterLust” Tempe Public Library AZ, curator: Michelle Dock. ViridianArtists  Gallery NY City 18th  Annual National Exhibition juror: Charlotta Kotik-Brooklyn Museum NY   Agora Gallery New York City 22nd Annual International Exhibition, juror: Tina Kukielski-Whitney Museum NY   Cultural Arts Council 21st Annual National Exhibit, Douglasville, GA, juror: Dr. Bill Eiland director Georgia Museum of Art

2006: Glendale Arts Council 43rd Ann. Juried, (1st place in Oil/Acrylic division + Best of Show). Art Detour #18 Phx., AZ   Coos Art Museum, OR  juror: Ed Musante.  ViridianArtistsInc. 17th Annual National Juried Exhibit New York City, juror: Robert Rosenblum Guggenheim Museum NY

2005: Coos Art Museum, Oregon, juror: Norman Lundin, emeritus Professor of Art -Seattle, Wa.    Vision Gallery, AZ.   Foundry Art Centre, Missouri juried.       Herberger Theatre, AZ. juried “Inside -Outside”.

2004: Artlink’s AZ. juried 8th Annual  Art Exhibition.       Grand Canyon University, AZ. “Landscape Realisms Visited”.       Sky Harbor Art Program, AZ. juried-“Flights of Fancy”.   Herberger Theatre, AZ juried “Summer Delights”.

2003: Imbeau Gallery, Mesa AZ      Vision Gallery, Chandler AZ       Dinnerware, Tucson AZ 10th Biennial Juried Nat’l.

Sky Harbor Art Program, Phoenix AZ juried “Capturing the Wild” & “Fish Stories”.           Art Detour, Phoenix AZ

2002: Artlink’s AZ juried 6th Annual  Art Exhibition.       Wind River Valley Artists Guild, WY 53rd Annual Art Exhibition (honorable mention in watercolor division).    Phippen Museum, AZ 28th  Annual Fine Art Show.

2001: Mesa Southwest Museum, AZ “Artists Expansion Group Exhibit”.       Art Detour, Phoenix AZ

   Solo Exhibits:

2005: Joan Cawley Gallery, AZ “Some Old Thoughts, Some New Thoughts”

2004: Joan Cawley Gallery, AZ Debut Exhibit.

2003: Mesa Southwest Museum, AZ “Dawn To Dawn-Past, Present, Possible Futures”.   Mayo Health Center, AZ.

2001: Burton Barr Central Library, AZ “Some Thoughts”


April ‘08 Phoenix Home & Garden magazine featured artist. May ’08 944 magazine. Mar. 2005-Book -“17 Interviews with 17 Visual Fine Artists” writer James Leonard-Amodeo, Sierra Arts Productions. Jan. 2005 SouthwestArt Magazine “Start Your Collection” column. Nov. 14, 2004 Arizona Republic a&e. Oct. 30, 2003 The State Press Magazine: Steve Ganczaruk Oct. 24, 2003 AZ.  Sentinel. Oct. 19, 2003 Arizona Republic a&e section: John Villani. Oct. 18, 2001 Arizona Republic, the rep: Richard Nilsen. May 15, 2001 Arizona Daily Star: Helena Elling.

Permanent Collections:

Private, Arizona Museum of Natural History, Burton Barr Central Library-Phoenix, AZ, City of Glendale, AZ, City of Chandler, AZ


Craig Cheply-A Brief History (Southwest Region Vie

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