Sorry for the rather poor quality of this photo, but I took this picture on my phone while walking around in downtown Ann Arbor. This is an installation by talented A2 artist Mike Sivak whose beautifully crafted artworks often refer to devotional objects such as reliquaries and altars, all in the service of his reverence for art.
This installation is part of an ongoing program of Ann Arbor Art Center which selects artworks to appear in the “Aquarium” microgallery on Ashley Street near Liberty, adding some much-needed visual liveliness to an otherwise featureless city block. The space is 8′ x 8′ x 2.5′
To quote the accompanying wall copy:
The Aquarium is a microgallery that hosts ten exhibitions annually. The mission of the Aquarium is to showcase the work of regional artists working with alternative media such as installation, moving image and performance. Artists are invited to fill the gallery in its entirety with a work of art that is unconventional and fun.
I noticed that the windows project is funded by an organization called the Ann Arbor Awesome Foundation which I had never heard of. Upon a little investigation I found out that this group provides mini grants to support the “creation of awesomeness in the Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti area” Their recent grants, in addition to the Aquarium project, include funding a mural on the Dos Hermanos Market in Ypsilanti. They have also recently funded projects by Bike A2 and Abundant Michigan Permaculture Ypsilanti. For more: http://a2awesome.org/
Play Time opened on May 22 at the Toledo Museum of Art. The exhibit celebrates the art of diversion and the value of play to both refresh the human spirit and inspire creativity. Unlike “look but don’t touch” exhibitions, this interactive, family-friendly, hands-on exhibition enables visitors to immerse themselves in contemporary art as they may never have done before.
“This show is not only about play in the traditional sense, but also the idea of being in the moment, of inspiring wonder, of invoking your natural curiosity,” said Halona Norton-Westbrook, who is co-curating the exhibition with the Museum’s associate director Amy Gilman.
“It’s an experimental exhibition that aims to defy traditional ideas of viewing art by providing interactive experiences. The exhibition is not confined to a single gallery, and in fact, it will change throughout June, July and August so viewers will need to come more than once to see it all,” said Norton-Westbrook, who is the Museum’s Mellon Fellow and associate curator of contemporary art.
Major works in the exhibition include room-sized Harmonic Motion by artists Toshiko Horiuchi MacAdam and Charles Richard MacAdam, which was initially commissioned by Enel Contemporenea in Rome. The colorful, multi-sensory installation allows children and adults to climb and play inside its hand-crocheted hanging nets.
Play Time continues through Sept. 6. The exhibition is sponsored in part by ProMedica and made possible with the support of Museum members and the sustainability grant program of the Ohio Arts Council. In addition to works of art being added and subtracted from the exhibition during its run, a wide range of exhibition-related programs is planned. A list of programs follows. For more information, visit http://playtime.toledomuseum.org/. The Museum is open every day except Monday and will be closed on Memorial Day and on Labor Day.
I went to the Painting Now exhibit at the Ann Arbor Art Center last week mostly to see work by Toledo area artist Tim Gaewsky, whose paintings I like. But I got way, way more than I bargained for. The show, in the second floor gallery at 117 W. Liberty St. in Ann Arbor is a knockout— a rich, kaleidoscopic cornucopia of wildly divergent painting styles, subjects and approaches that makes it a feast for the eye and mind.
Notes on the exhibit state that “Painting in 2015 is characterized by its inclusiveness of genres, styles, aesthetics, concepts, materials, and processes. There is no single direction, but multiple vectors of highly energetic artistic expression. The result is a continuing flowering of independent, eclectic, and significant art works that characterize the American art scene.”
The exhibit lives up to this description in every way imaginable. Juried by Peter Williams (http://goo.gl/b8FfXo), no painterly stone is left un-turned by these accomplished artists, chosen from over 400 entries. Figurative work appeared to be slightly favored, probably reflecting the available pool of Midwestern talent.
I’ve included a few of the paintings I like below, but these selections are very far from exhausting the pleasures, both intellectual and visual, of this exhibit.
Drawing and paintings, step aside. Sculpture will take over the gallery at Gordy Fine Art & Framing, 224 E. Main Street, Muncie Indiana, thanks to Toledo area artist Chet Geiselman. The exhibit will run May 7-30. The artist describes himself as, “a creative problem solver, a collector and arranger of objects and information, a fabricator of visual forms, and a lifelong student of spiritual and human nature.” Bauhaus design has served as a beacon for his personal creations made of wood, steel and “re-contextualized found objects.” Each of Geiselman’s pieces suggests a formal relationship to the space it inhabits and alludes to the potential functionality of the objects that compose it. The full title of this exhibit, is, “Minding the Gaps in the Foundation of the Sensual.”
The gallery hours are: Monday-Friday 9-5:30, Saturday 9-3.
The Ann Arbor Art Center is redesigning and and re-thinking its programs for professional fine artists. This exhibition might be worth applying for.
Entries Submission Deadline EXTENDED: Sunday, March 15
The Art Now Series is an expansion of The Print. This Annual Series creates focus on other media as well as printmaking. We are pleased to present this year’s exhibit which features innovative work in PAINTING. Cash prizes are totaling more than $700 being awarded.
Eligibility: Artists nationwide may submit a maximum of three entries. For this exhibit painting can be interpreted widely. Artists working with new genres such as installation, digital process, or collage are welcome to apply, as well as artists who work with traditional paint medium. Entries must incorporate paint in some capacity. All work should be created within the last two years. Works submitted must have not been previously shown in any competition at the Ann Arbor Art Center.
Margi Weir’s drawings are now showing in several exhibits around the U.S.:
The 6th Annual Drawing Discourse, S. Tucker Cooke Gallery, University of North Carolina, Asheville, NC (juror: Val Britton, MFA from California College of the Arts ;1109 entries from 379 artists, 47 pieces selected)
49th Annual National Drawing and Small Sculpture Show, Del Mar College, Corpus Christi, TX (juror; Kurt Dyrhaug is an Associate Professor at Lamar University in Beaumont, TX) Weir received the Del Mar College Permanent Collection $1000 purchase award (shown above)
26th National Drawing and Print Exhibition, Notre Dame of Maryland University,Baltimore, MD
Home, Fitton Center for Creative Arts, Hamilton, OH
David Eichenberg (he of the hyper-realist portraits on aluminum in the TAA95 exhibit) is currently in a show in Chisinau, Moldova at the Natural History Museum.
The show is called “An International Exhibition: The Figure as seen by the Eyes of Contemporary Artists” It is curated by Italian Hyper-realist Painter Giuseppe Muscio in conjunction with the Italian Embassy in Chisinau. It will run from the February 10 – 25, 2015.
For artists who are interested in finding out more about art in Detroit and possibly exhibiting there, here is a great opportunity: Hatch Art has just issued a call for entries to Hatchback, an annual juried group show. The juror is Chido Johnson, Associate Professor at the College for Creative Studies and there is no fee. Hatch is a well respected non-profit gallery and studio space. Like most Detroit art venues, the gallery is open for limited hours but it is clean, well-lit, professionally run, and has a strong following within the city’s arts community. The deadline for entry is March 3.
I showed my work at Hatchback 8 last year, and it resulted in an invitation to show more extensively in TABLEAU: Hardin, Letts, Schaedig, currently on view until February 28. The gallery is open this Saturday 1-6 and I will be on hand if anyone wants to come and scope it out.