_Selma Grows

This week we step into the life of a local artist who has overcome the strains of his past to find his desired future. His inspiring story has successfully fueled the S.E.L.M.A. cause.

Chris Redman was born in San Diego and was adopted out by CA, CPS due to severe child abuse resulting in a broken femur. At 1 ½ years old Chris was placed in the first of 6 different foster homes, until his long awaited adoptive parents became his family at 5. He appreciates how his parents, “never stopped supporting him with a new opportunity”.

As Chris entered into the difficulties of young adulthood he remembers using his natural passion for art as a means of strengthening his concentration and focus in school, but when the idea of Chris becoming a vocational artist arose, his parents were unable to see the viability in an artist life for their son. Instead, Chris followed his fathers’ instruction and attempted a career in Engineering where, sadly, he had to completely abandon his artistic forms of focus. Over time the lack of personal stimulation lead to a disappointed spiral into addiction.

Chris then found his own path at our deserts beloved Betty Ford Center, where he followed through with sobriety. Chris was then diagnosed with Bells Palsy after a mini stroke that left him paralyzed on his right side. This is when Chris realized how his passion for art could be reignited. He explored the artistic medium to strengthen concentration and focus and began to simultaneously recover from the stroke and his past through art.

14 months later, Chris realized his art was missing a meaning. Chris notes Bansky, an artist who announces social issues, as inspiring CVR, Chris’ brand. CVR now has a line called KONSUME, where you will find intense depictions of our Country’s mass media images, like Winnie the Pooh, Barcodes, and Felix the Cat along with an evoking image of an inherently bad black bunny wearing a white bunny suit. Chris’ art now often reflects a “moment of choice”.

By continuing to use his “artistic focus” practices Chris has spent three consecutive semesters on the Deans List at College of the Desert. With intended awareness and hope, Chris reminds us to ask ourselves who we truly are without the crutches of consuming “material possessions and social stature …what will we do to change the world?” Chris says we should “Work hard… to be who we really are”.

Chris is currently training to become a SELMA Program Director and hopes to share his passion by opening a SELMA, FREE to members MIXED MEDIA ART Program in October 2012.

If you are interested in Chris’ art you can find him at CVREDMAN.DEVIANTART.COM or contact him directly at chrisvanredman@gmail.com
Support and Education for Local Music and Arts (www.selmagrows.org) Coachella Valley Chapter 1

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