ARTSPEAK RADIO- Jim Sajovic, Lindsey Doolittle, and Troy Swangstu

Wednesday August 1, 2018 Noon to 1PM

Host/producer Maria Vasquez Boyd talks with artist/educator Jim Sajovic, artist/author Lindsey Doolittle, and painter Troy Swangstu.

Jim Sajovic was born in Chicago and studied painting at the University of Illinois and the University of Florida. He is a recipient of a Mid-America Arts Alliance/NEA Fellowship Award in Painting. Professor, Kansas City Art Institute, 1971 through 2016.
Jim Sajovic’s works are held in public and private collections in the United States, Europe, and Asia. His artworks have been exhibited at galleries and museums, nationally and internationally, including New York, Chicago, Atlanta, Los Angeles; Edinburgh (Scotland), Paris (France), as well as Milan, Rome, and Venice (Italy). Solo exhibitions include: Jim Sajovic: Hix Fragments & (pash’n), Todd Weiner Gallery, Kansas City, Missouri: Be Inspired, Kemper Crossroads Museum, Kansas City, Missouri: Jim Sajovic: Evolution, Daum Museum of Contemporary Art, Sedalia, Missouri; Dreamer-Ecstasy, Belger Arts Center, Kansas City, Missouri; Jim Sajovic, The Lowe Gallery, Atlanta, Georgia; Millennium Garden, The Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art, St. Joseph, Missouri. Sajovic’s works were also featured in: “Dream Bodies”, The Kansas City Jewish Museum; “WORD”, Nerman Gallery of Art at JCCC; and “Witness: Artists’ Perspectives on War”, The Leedy-Voulkos Art Center; The Perception of Appearance, Frye Art Museum, Seattle, Washington; Inferno, Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Dark Paintings and The Dante Paintings, Leedy-Voulkos Art Center, Kansas City, Missouri; New American Talent: The Tenth Exhibition, Laguna Gloria Art Museum, Austin, Texas; and Motion Pictures: The Art of Jim Sajovic, The Mulvane Art Museum, Topeka, Kansas.
Published commentary on his work has appeared in Notes for a Young Painter (Prentice-Hall, Inc.), New American Paintings, and numerous periodicals including Art in America and Flash Art.

Doolittle is a board member to SASS (Suicide Awareness Survivor Support), children’s author to Goodnight Mr. Vincent van Gogh, speaker, and artist to the exhibit, Faces After Suicide. After her late husband, Sgt. Brett Doolittle of the Kansas City, Kansas police department, ended his life in 2015 she chose to turn his suicide into something open, honest, and good. She fully believes that postvention is prevention and openly shares with her audience the warning signs she witnessed and how her life has been transformed as a suicide loss survivor. To see upcoming events and to learn more about Lindsey Doolittle please visit
If you are a suicide loss survivor and would like to learn more about SASS (Suicide Awareness Survivor Support) please visit

Lindsey joined the support group SASS (Suicide Awareness Survivor Support) who helped show her that she wasn’t alone, to not be ashamed, and it wasn’t her fault. During group sessions, she drew other loss survivors, capturing the emotional repercussions their loved one’s suicide unknowingly left behind. Never intending to place her artworks on display, she decided it was time for the public to see the gauntlet of grief that suicide creates, which is unlike any other death. Loss survivors are conflicted with the thought that the person who murdered their loved one, was their loved one. And where mourners are met with compassion and sympathy; suicide loss survivors are faced with blame, judgement, and exclusion. Despair, rage, sorrow, numbness, torture, longing, confusion, relief, or recalling happy memories are some of the expressions you will see on the blind-contour ink drawings. To keep everyone’s anonymity, all artworks are titled by who that group member lost to suicide.

Lastly, this is a growing, traveling exhibit that has a collection of local and global prevention resources for viewers to take. Suicide does not discriminate against: age, sex, religion, race, ethnicity, sexual preference, career choices, how much you love someone, or how much they love you. This exhibit is bigger than just one person’s story. The more awareness we can create, the more impactful and eye-opening it will become.
Suicide loss survivors never get over their loved one’s death, but we can get through it …together. If you are hurting after a suicide loss, please visit

Goodnight Mr. Vincent van Gogh offers a gentle way of explaining a loved one’s suicide to a child without sweeping it under the rug. By starting an open and honest conversation with our youth, we can help break down the stigmas and start raising mental health awareness. We need to teach our children that it’s ok to speak up and ask questions about feelings they might not understand instead of keeping our emotions hidden. Together we can stay above the rug!
This book includes resources on suicide support, a space to write a letter to your lost loved one, and a page where you can attach his/her photo. For each book that is purchased, part of the proceeds to go to SASS (Suicide Awareness Survivor Support).
The book is on permanent display in the official Vincent Van Gogh Library in the Netherlands..where Vincent once lived and worked.

Troy Swangstu is a local artist currently based out of Paola, Kansas and is originally from Bettendorf, Iowa. Troy received formal training in painting at the Kansas City Art Institute. Shortly after, he continued to gain relevant experience exhibiting with other professional artists and by working closely with the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. In the years since, he continues to gain recognition as a prolific exhibitor at local and regional galleries. As well as his career as an artist, Swangstu has since relocated to Paola, KS to embrace a rural life of grazing cattle. Drawing upon his passion for regenerative farming practices, Swangstu employs the imagery of his daily life, his livestock and the surrounding landscape, as the primary visual subject of these paintings. Each painting created exclusively for this exhibition features abstracted grazing animals; most notably, bulls, rams, and antelopes.

July 12 – September 1, 2018
​Leedy-Voulos Art Center 2012 Baltimore Ave, Kansas City, MO 64108 | (816) 474-1919


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