Anders Sandstrom


Artist's Statement

    My works are sometimes simple and direct, other times subtle and veiled, but usually multilayered in reference and meaning. I want them to be accessible and inviting, but once their invitation is accepted, I want the works to require some time to process and digest. I don’t tend to work in a way that produces a series focused on a particular subject or theme. Each piece feels like an autonomous offspring to me. They are related to each other in that they emerged from the same psychic soup, and share some recurring themes and subtexts. These themes and subtexts may include personal or cultural references, social satire, art history, mythology, pop culture, and, more broadly, the human condition.    Accessing the imagery is a tricky, intuitive process for me.  The goal is to find that balance of form and content that allows each piece to come to life and have presence and meaning. Like a surfer timing his ride, it can be exhilarating to feel at one with one’s process. Admittedly, there are also times I feel more like Dr. Frankenstein pounding on the chest of an unresponsive monster. Surprise is important to me in my work. If I’m not at least a little surprised by some aspect of a piece during its creation, it won’t likely see the light of day.    I’m an avid consumer of art museums. Each visit is motivated by that same quest for surprises and fresh perspectives. I’ve been influenced by an array of old masters, modern masters, and more obscure artists. A short sampling would include Giovanni Bellini, Botticelli, Albrecht Durer, Rembrandt, Ingres, Picasso, Thomas Hart Benton, Stanley Spencer, Stuart Davis, Ellsworth Kelly, Arthur Dove, William Itter, Ronald Markman, and Robert Barnes. A special thank you goes to Rembrandt for his drawings and etchings. It was a show of his drawings and prints at the National Gallery of Art in Washington that served as a timely catalyst.  It blew me away, just when I needed to be blown away.      



      Anders was born in Philadelphia in 1961. During his early years he lived in such places as rural Maine, Bloomington, Indiana, and the Republic of Nigeria. As a young adult, after receiving a Bachelor’s degree in biology, he launched a circuitous, variety-based career by moving with his wife to Kagoshima, Japan to teach conversational English. Upon returning to Bloomington in the late 1980’s, he studied painting, drawing, and design with William Itter, Ron Markman, Robert Barnes, and Barry Gealt. In the early 1990’s, he and his wife Nina moved to Washington, DC, where he earned his MFA in painting and drawing from American University. Anders then taught painting and drawing for a couple of years as an adjunct professor at American. As artists often do, he also had the opportunity to earn income in other diverse ways such as carpentry and audio visual technology.    In 1997, Anders and Nina embarked on the grand adventure of parenthood with the birth of the first of three sons. Anders accepted an extended “sabbatical” and the role of stay-at-home-father, leaving the income-earning in Nina’s very capable hands. After 15 years in the Washington, DC area, the Sandstrom/Ardery family returned to the Indianapolis area.   As his sons are now in high school or beyond, his “day job” has shifted to that of “primary domestic facilitator.” This transition has allowed the studio and print shop that he maintains to hum once again with activity and production. Over the last several years his prints have been featured in venues throughout the country, alongside other prints from around the world as part of traveling exhibits put on by the Wood Engravers’ Network.    



1994 MFA, Painting/Drawing, with additional studies in Printmaking and Art History, American University, Washington, DC

1993 Vermont Studio Center, Johnson, VT  

1990 BFA, Painting Indiana University, Bloomington IN  

1984 BA, Biology Indiana University, Bloomington, IN  


 American University:  Graduate Fellowship,   Graduate Merit Award  

 Vermont Studio:  Center Scholarship for summer session attendance

 Indiana University:  Harry Engle Scholarship (Outstanding Painting Student), 1990  CFC Cook Outstanding Painting Student Award, 1989 


924 Gallery, Solo Show, "Benign Comedy," Indianapolis, IN, May, 2019

Wood Engravers’ Network 3rd Triennial juried traveling exhibition, 2017 – 2019 

International Wood Engraving Invitational, Davidson Galleries, Seattle, WA, December, 2017

Wood Engravers’ Network 2nd Triennial juried traveling exhibition, 2014 – 2016 

“Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here,” national and international group shows, 2013 – present 

Wood Engravers’ Network 1st juried traveling exhibition, 2012 -2013 

INprint group show “IN Irvington”, Bona Thompson Center, Indianapolis, IN, 2010    


July First Friday Group Show, Harrison Center, Indianapolis, IN, 2010  


New Talent, Signal 66 Gallery, Washington, DC, 1999  


1995 Faculty Show, American University, Washington, DC, 1995  

Gallery Zino, Solo Exhibition, Bethesda, MD, 1995 

1994 Annual Juried Exhibition, Greater Reston Arts Center, Reston, VA, 1994 


Watkins Gallery, Solo Exhibition, Washington, DC, 1994  


8 in Dialogue, Traveling Exhibition, Washington, DC and Johnson, VT, 1994  


Consortium of Universities Group Show, Washington, DC, 1993  


Bentley Gallery Group Show, Washington, DC, 1993  

Watkins Gallery Group Show, Washington, DC, 1993  

Architectural Center Gallery, Solo Exhibition: Recent Paintings, Indianapolis, IN, 1991  

SOFA Gallery Group Show, Bloomington, IN, 1990  

National Society of Arts and Letters Group Show, Bloomington, IN, 1989   


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Anders Sandstrom

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