listed alphabetically by last name
Josh Betsey is an Artist, Designer and creative spirit with a BFA from University of the Arts, Philadelphia. A transplant from the Washington D.C. area, he has lived in Indianapolis since 2002. With experience in a variety of artistic disciplines, he draws inspiration from American subculture, employing digital design as the primary method of output. With a current focus on placemaking and collaborative design, he hopes to expand the general consensus of artists as decorators to include the roles of problem solver, community builder, and social connector.
Lauren is an artist, teacher, mother, and student. Her photo-based mixed media pieces reflect on her life and experience as an Indy native. Lauren is a graduate student at UIndy in the Social Practice Art Program, where she is developing her process for creative expression in collaboration with neighbors.
Dr. Jarrod Nicholas Dortch
Dr. Jarrod Nicholas Dortch is a Professor of Communication at Ivy Tech Community College in Muncie, Indiana. He also serves as the owner and operator of Solful Gardens, a local urban agriculture startup specializing in bringing Fresh.Urban.Natural produce to clients’ properties and working with community gardens. He has been affiliated with Big Car as a Community Artist and as Community Gardener at the Tube Factory artspace. He is currently working with Listen Hear and WQRT 99.1 FM. He enjoys bringing together art, education, and gardening to help to enrich the experiences of communities and their denizens.
Carlie Foreman serves Big Car as an Intern for Listen Hear and WQRT. Foreman hosts “Good Vibrations”, an electronica show, on the first Wednesday of every month from 5-6 PM. As a native of Indianapolis, Carlie is driven to foster growth and culture in her community through public programming. She is expecting a BFA from Herron School of Art and Design in December of 2018.
Katelyn Freed is a native to the Indianapolis area and is currently a Design for Social Impact Student at Indiana Wesleyan University. Her field of study touches in architecture, interior design, placemaking, event planning, and sculpture. Her goal is to be able to inspire people through art, design and place; for people to take ownership in themselves and where they live.
Andy is an artist, designer and musician. He specializes in collaborative design, frequently synthesizing diverse opinions from numerous stakeholders into singular, coherent outcomes. In addition to his work as creative director at Big Car, he has maintained his own design practice for over 15 years. He has a BFA in painting and a BA in philosophy from Indiana University, Bloomington.
Artist in Residence
Conner Green is an interdisciplinary artist originally from Indianapolis. He studied art and literature at Indiana University and received his MFA at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. His work—which explores elements of desire, myth, and the built environment—has been exhibited both nationally and internationally. He has worked with several art-related organizations including the IMA, the International Center of Photography, and the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art where he has operated in a variety of roles as an educator, furniture maker, graphic designer, and museum preparator. As a Resident Artist at Big Car he is excited to engage with local communities through art and creative placemaking. Currently he is trying to locate his car keys.
Staff Artist/Listen Hear
Oreo Jones (Sean Smith) is that pair of Air Jordans too scuffed up to wear in public, but you do it anyway because they still feel right. Hailing from Warsaw, Indiana, Jones has made Indianapolis his creative mecca. A multi-talented artist who delves into sound, music, and visual experimentation, Jones shares and expand the minds of people in surrounding neighborhoods, while helping the city grow.
Eduardo S. Luna
Born in Mexico, raised in the Midwest, Eduardo is passionate about bringing the two cultures together. He is a founding member of NOPAL Cultural Center, a Latino-American arts organization. He also manages events and appearances of his friend El Camaron Electronico, a luchador whose mission is to bring culture to the community.
Chief Curator/ Co-Founder
Shauta Marsh is a co-founder of Big Car. From 2011-2015 she was executive director of the Indianapolis Museum of Contemporary Art (iMOCA). There she curated and/or organized more than 40 exhibitions including LaToya Ruby Frazier and Tony Buba:Inheritance, Trenton Doyle Hancock: Mound At Large, Richard Mosse:Fermata, etc. She returned in March 2015 as a commissioning curator and program director for The Tube Factory exhibition space.
Staff Artist - Programming & Outreach
Lover of Indianapolis neighborhoods and community history, Elizabeth is a visual artist turned perpetual student of public history and community memory. She is a proud Near Eastside resident with a dual bachelor’s degree in art history and gender studies and a master’s degree in museum studies. As part of her focus on community development, Elizabeth most recently worked to stabilize families and individuals in the Brookside neighborhood through youth, reentry, and low-income housing programs. She is most interested in public programs that reflect the often overlooked and underrepresented stories of life in Indianapolis.
Julissa Olivares is our 2018 intern through the Indiana Latino Institute for Big Car Collaborative. A proud graduate of Broad Ripple Magnet High School for the Arts & Humanities, she is currently an undergraduate junior at IUPUI majoring in Forensic Science Investigation and minoring in Public Safety Management. Julissa hopes to incorporate and build relationships throughout the community by collaborating on projects, data tracking, and facilitating audio and media.
Creative Placemaker Resident
Adam is our Researcher and Placemaker in Residence at the Tube Factory. He obtained his Master of Arts degree in 2017 from Universiteit Utrecht in Art and Society, Utrecht, Netherlands. The research topics Adam focuses on include creative cities development, creative economy, and creative placemaking. He has been involved with the European Arts Think-Tank EUrArt, facilitated content production and art administration with various organizations, and was an exhibiting artist and writer in his hometown of Evansville, Indiana. As of Spring 2018 he was accepted into Winchester School of Art for his Ph.D. research into Creative City Development and will be practicing in the U.K. after his residency.
Michelle Strahl Salinas
Director, South Indy Quality of Life Plan
As a lifelong South Indy resident, Michelle is proud to advocate for her community as Director of the South Indy Quality of Life Plan and Manager of the Garfield Park Farmer’s Market. She has lived in Garfield Park since 2006 with her husband and 4 children. Building a sense of community through neighborhood and youth serving nonprofit organizations is her passion. She has had a diverse background which includes degrees and work in Environmental Design of Urban Planning, Nonprofit Management and Elementary Education
Designer/WQRT Station Manager
Holly Sommers serves as a collaborative designer for Big Car, and makes sure everybody plays nice at our radio station, 99.1 WQRT. She has worked in corporate, private and non-profit art direction for over 20 years and enjoys fostering communication in our community. Holly is also an artist, small business owner, and mother—roles which help shape her daily appreciation and practice of order, patience, versatility, and empathy.
Builder & Artist
As lead builder, Elliot focuses on developing community spaces and programming with a constant mantra of openly sharing skills, tools, and ideas. Elliot is an artist, designer, builder, and technologist with experience working with community-focused projects involving farms, orchards, education, social justice, and Native American languages. Always looking to expand his own skills, he spends as much time as possible woodturning, playing cello, gardening, 3D modeling, and making bigger and BIGGER mechanical animals.
CEO, Co-founder, & Lead Artist
Jim Walker leads Big Car’s work as a social practice artist, placemaker, community builder, designer, teacher, and writer who believes everyone deserves open access to the joys of art, creativity, and great public places. Jim — who worked previously as a journalist (writer, photographer, editor, and designer) for 20 years — is a student of cities and enjoys walking, biking, travel, and baseball. He lives with his family in the Garfield Park neighborhood. More here.