Dan Lam, Kristen Liu Wong, Meryl Pataky, and Erik Mark Sandberg

June 2 – 24, 2017
Opening Reception: Friday, June 2nd, 7:00 – 10:00 pm


This June, Stephanie Chefas Projects is delighted to announce NEON LOVE, a four person exhibit honoring the brilliance of electrifying hues through sculpture, paintings, photography, and mixed media assemblages. Like a moth to the flame, each artist draws the viewer in with his or her electrifying aesthetic and takes us on a visual journey glowing with exploration of self through artistic expression. From the aristocratic portrayal of Durer to the camouflage visage of Warhol, the timeless art of self-portrait has been cemented as a cornerstone of art history, often demonstrating an artist in his or her most personal (perhaps even vulnerable) mode of expression. Through these personal endeavors an artist can reveal innermost thoughts and feelings while simultaneously allowing the viewer to bear witness to a human life in flux.

As a visual ode to the carefree and sultry days of summer, Stephanie Chefas Projects is turning up the heat in June with a group exhibit entitled NEON LOVE. The show will present works from four artists who each convey a distinct voice and a brilliant adoration for electrifying hues and glowing light. 

Through the power of artistic expression, NEON LOVE celebrates a season that personifies escapism and outside culture. The sensation of sand between your toes, an idyllic romp in the green grass, a sweaty late night rendezvous--all this and more drips with newfound perspective via ceramic booty sculptures, vibrant paintings, paper cutouts and textiles.  

Featuring: Dan Lam, Kristen Liu Wong, Meryl Pataky, and Erik Mark Sandberg

The opening reception for NEON LOVE will be held at Stephanie Chefas Projects on Friday, June 2nd from 7-10pm. Stephanie Chefas Projects is located in Portland, Oregon at 305 SE 3rd Avenue on the second floor of the Urban Row building. The exhibition will be on view through June 24th, 2017 and is free and open to the public. 



Born in Manila to a Vietnamese family who relocated to Texas when she was a child, Lam spent her formative creative years in Dallas with her mother.  She received her B.F.A. in 2010 from the University of North Texas and later completed a Masters of Fine Arts degree at Arizona State University.

Lam currently resides in Dallas, TX where she works primarily alone in her studio at her home.  She finds peace and solace in her creative process during the late night hours.  Having the accessibility to work and live in the same space allows her to move back and forth freely and comfortably in her own controlled chaos.  Her sculptures also live amongst her.  From her bookshelf to the top of a file cabinet, her works are everywhere around her and become living, breathing organisms of the unique environment she has created for herself to live within. 

Lam enjoys the unpredictable quality of her process.  This is seen in the way she manipulates the foam structures and handles the resin.  She couples this with the tedious and controlled placement of her acrylic “spikes” and surface designs.  This opposition is crucial to her work.  Whether seen in the process itself, or the final result, which exudes both an intense beauty and an intense uneasiness, Lam plays with these polarities and examines them closely.

The polymorphous, multi-textural and ambiguous qualities of her work both confuse and delight the viewer, leaving you craving more and wishing you could touch them.  Dan Lam is just getting started.  The objects that she is making are difficult to identify and definitely impossible to forget.



Born and raised in San Francisco, Kristen Liu-Wong left home at the tender age of 17 for Brooklyn to attend Pratt Institute where she would major in Illustration. Since graduating in 2013, she has shown extensively in numerous galleries on the East and West coasts and some places in between and beyond.

Her work blends everyday occurrences from her life in Brooklyn with abstracted nightmares and crude humor. Trained as an illustrator, she tries to tell a story with every piece she makes, developing a personal and slightly sinister narrative within each painting. Using candy colors, heavy patterning, and tight compositions, the work draws inspiration from American folk art, the cartoons she watched as a kid, and her appreciation for architecture. She is always striving to make work that is highly personal but altered enough to allow individual interpretations to be applied to every story she paints.



Originally from South Florida, Meryl Pataky moved to San Francisco in 2002 to attend the Academy of Art University.  She fell in love with the tactile nature of sculpture and pursued a BFA in the major.  Meryl’s work consistently revolves around elements found on the periodic table. From silver and copper to neon, iron and carbon, Meryl creates a variety of abstract works that relate to her concept of universal connectedness. In doing so, Meryl combines technical expertise–from welding to glasswork to papermaking–with her own personal narrative, building complex pieces that invite the viewer to guess at what thoughts and experiences influenced her process.



Inspired by everyday life in Los Angeles, Erik Mark Sandberg’s (b. 1975) work addresses issues such as globalization, gentrification, consumerism, and love in the modern day. His allegorical narratives incorporate an experimental mix of digital 3-D modeling, printmaking, photography, drawing, and collage. For Sandberg, the use of composite imagery symbolizes the disconnect that technology creates between man’s natural environment and the ersatz reality of the digital realm. Sandberg is also a prolific commercial artist and has received numerous awards for advertising and editorial illustrations. “‘Illustration’ is a malleable term,” Sandberg explains. “If an image is attached to a story, poster or CD, it has a specific context or purpose. When approaching exhibition work, the relevance comes from a historical and theoretical point. You’re making art against the burden of history. The difference is substantial, but there are times when things can walk the line.”

Dan Lam, 'Better Half'

Dan Lam, 'Better Half'

Kristen Liu Wong, 'Imagined Self Portrait with Juice'

Kristen Liu Wong, 'Imagined Self Portrait with Juice'

Meryl Pataky, 'Small Abstract"

Meryl Pataky, 'Small Abstract"

Erik Mark Sandberg, 'Day at the Beach'

Erik Mark Sandberg, 'Day at the Beach'