Geer Chagnon creating marble
chips at Artspace, Valdicastello, Italy
National Museum of Natural History,
Washington, DC. 2000 - Present
Specialist - Model Maker
Office of Exhibits - Central
1998 - 2000
Office of the Architect of the Capitol
U.S. Capitol Building, Washington, DC
Geer Chagnon was introduced
to stone carving by her mother, J. Gail Geer.
After Criis earned degrees in fine art from Mary
Washington College and Hollins University, Criis and
Gail studied marble carving together with Kyle Smith
at Artspace in Valdicastello, Italy.
of Arts, Sculpture, 1994.
Hollins University, Roanoke, Virginia.
Studio Workshop with Michiel Van der Sommen,1998
Ferrum College, Ferrum, VA
Study, Marble Sculpture, 1997
Artspace Studios, Valdicastello, Pietrasanta, Italy.
Study, Illustration, 1992
Savannah College of Art and Design, Savannah, GA
of Science in Biology, 1992.
Bachelor of Science in Studio Art, 1992.
Mary Washington College, Fredericksburg, Virginia.
Bath Count Art Show, Bath County, VA, 2002, 2003
League of Roanoke Artists, 2001
Place in Sculpture
Heart of Virginia Festival, 1996
Savannah College of Art and Design. 1992
Arts Instructor, Roanoke College, Salem, VA
Teacher, Roanoke City Schools, Roanoke, VA, 1994-1995
Science Instructor, Apple Ridge Farm, Copper Hill,
Yellow Springs Invitational
Historic Yellow Springs Foundation, Chester
Springs, PA, since 2000
that Moves the Soul
with J. Gail Geer and Bill
Center of Virginia, Waynesboro, VA, 2007
On and Off the Wall
The Jefferson Center, Roanoke, VA, 2004
Women in the Arts Exhibition
Ripley Center of the Smithsonian Institution,
National Mall, Washington, DC, 1997
Greater Reston Art Center, Reston, VA, 1997
the Spirit Moves - with J. Gail Geer
E. Taylor Greer Gallery, Ferrum College, Ferrum VA,
County Art Show
Bath County, VA, 1999-2003
- with J. Gail Geer
Shenandoah Valley Art Center, Waynesboro, VA, 1998
of Virginia Festival
Farmville, VA 1996
Art Museum of Western Virginia, Roanoke, VA 1993,
Studios on the Square, Roanoke, VA 1994
learned to carve the old fashioned way, as an apprentice
to my mother. Although I hold Bachelor of Science degrees
in Biology and Studio Art from Mary Washington College
and a Master's degree in Sculpture from Hollins University,
most of my carving expertise was acquired sanding and
chipping on works with and for my mom. I used to joke
that I was her "stone slave" and had to sand
things to get my dinner.
years of carving with my mom in our studio in Roanoke,
we traveled to Pietrasanta, Italy during the 1990's
to study traditional marble carving techniques. Working
virtually in the shadow of Michelangelo, walking in
the footsteps of the greatest carvers and choosing stone
from their quarries added another dimension to my understanding
of working stone.
a "day job" I have been working for the National
Museum of Natural History at the Smithsonian Institution
and for the Office of Exhibits Central since the late
90's. I have built and installed exhibit components
such as archival mannequins, fiberglass figures, cast
stone pediments, giant microbes and synthetic elephant
droppings. I have also handled and moved thousands of
natural history specimens ranging in size from hummingbird
eggs to whale skulls including: articulated skeletons,
furs, textiles, sculpture, pottery, mounted birds and
mammals, boats, meteorites, and dinosaur bones. Most
recently I have been an integral part of the relocation
and re-housing of oversized specimens, including the
entire collection of Marine Mammals.
of this varied experience in art, life and work has
fed my intense interest in the natural world and helped
me to express that interest and vision through the medium
work consists of simplified form and line that always
condenses a natural subject into its essential visual
and emotional components. The fierce strength of a wild
beast or the gentle cradle of a mother's arms is simply
delineated with a minimum of fussy detail.
also have a loving and supportive husband, Tofer, and
a brilliant and beautiful son, Andrew.