Archive for the ‘Public Exhibit’ Category

UNSEEN

September 8th, 2017

zunseen

I belong to an artist cooperative gallery which gives me the opportunity to be a part of a two or three person show every year, as well as many group shows. This summer I am  showing my work with Don Sichler. The show runs from from August 18th to September 16th . The show is titled “Unseen” based on the notion that images are not always what they appear to be at first glance.

The gallery is only open a few days a week (Thursday and Friday, 4-7 pm and Saturday, 1-5pm). With these limited hours and the Labor Day weekend, where the gallery is closed altogether, along with Hoboken being a town that everyone flees during the dog-days of August, I thought I would share some of the images here.

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LBI Artist’s Studio Tour

July 3rd, 2017

 

This is my second year on the LBI Artists Studio Tour. I do not have a studio here but am happy and lucky to be hosted at the m.t. burton gallery in Surf City. The goal of the tour is for people to come and see artists at work, to promote art and the artist and hopefully make some sales. Many artists are introverts so this can be extremely intense, but well worth it. My most memorable encounter was with a mother and her pre-teen son and his sketchbook.  He was on the tour to see how “real” artists work and it made me feel like a real artist and less like a little kid with a sketchbook, the way I usually feel, if that makes any sense.

 

 

         LBI Map

             

 

 

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Art and Government Funding

May 5th, 2017

Art Can and Should be Funded by the People

The Great Hall at the Detroit Institute of Art

The Great Hall at Detroit Institute of Art

Needless to say, I am not happy about the government cutting  funding to the NEA (National Endowment for the Arts).  I am still waiting to hear if it is just another dumb idea that will be discarded as it proves to be unpopular or just run through the budget meetings, be eliminated and never be heard of again.

How exactly do we pay for the arts? According to the NEA, art is supported by direct public funding and by more than just the NEA. Public funding includes state and local agencies, public funding from other federal agencies and the private sector (individual, corporate and foundation) contributions. When NEA breaks it down it looks like this: earned income 40.7%, interest and endowment income 14.4%, individuals 20.3 %, corporations 8.4%, foundations 9.5%, local 3.3%, state 2.2%, federal 1.2%.

Although the NEA is the largest single funder, the arts actually have a network of allied but independent funding sources. The NEA has a very stringent process for grants and requires the recipient organization to match the amount awarded with an equal or greater amount of other, non-federal contributions. Many of the larger local arts agencies are now funded through a dedicated revenue stream, such as hotel/motel tax revenues. More recently crowd-funding has been used by many to fund art projects.

Learning from Detroit

I spent three years in Detroit, Michigan, finishing my BFA at Wayne State University. At the time, I thought of it as “doing time,” but now realize that I learned more about life and survival and hope in those days than I was able to understand at that age. The Detroit Institute of Art was within walking distance from my apartment in the Cass Corridor and I was amazed that anything that wonderful (along with the Masonic Temple) could still exist in this post riots devastated city atmosphere. (I am from NYC, so I’ve have seen great museums.)

Detroit’s fortunes have not improved over the years and it went into bankruptcy. The Detroit Institute of Art is owned by the city and its collection appraised at $4.6 billion with the likes of Rembrandt, Van Gogh, Matisse, Bruegel the Elder’s Wedding Dance and a wonderful mural by Diego Rivera depicting industry and the working class. The city decided the museum would need to contribute $500 million to the city. An easy connection can be made here and the idea was hatched to sell off some of the paintings at auction possibly taking them out of the public view and relegating them to private collections forever. Rather than have this happen the museum went on a fundraising drive. They managed to raise more than $800 million ($330 million from 9 different philanthropic organizations) and buy their way out of city control. The Detroit Institute of Art is now owned by independent non-profit charitable trust forever keeping its collection out of the hands of the city.

Diego Rivera's mural Detroit Industry

Detroit Industry by Diego Rivera

I believe that anything can be achieved if there is a will. Sometimes the need, in crisis form, needs to present itself before the will can form. I feel this way about the impending cut to the NEA, PBS, EPA, ACA and other government agencies and programs that my make my country great, but ultimately it is the people who make this country what it is and I have faith in them.

 

NYTimes:  http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2013/12/19/us/christies-detroit-art.html?action=click&contentCollection=U.S.&module=RelatedCoverage&pgtype=article&region=EndOfArticle&_r=0
Addendum: The NEA’s funding bump to a budget of $149.85 million is included in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2017, the agreement between House Republicans and Democrats that will fund the federal government through the remainder of the 2017 fiscal year.

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Final Week for “Looking Into the Light” at hob’art

April 16th, 2016

Sunday begins the final week for “Looking into the Light” at hob’art gallery. I will be speaking about my work on Sunday, April 17th, along with the other artists whose work is represented in this show. It is a stop on Hoboken’s 3rd Sunday Gallery Tour.

I do not like speaking to this type of audience. I do not enjoy speaking about my inner workings. So I am figuring it out here. My work in this show is very different, or was supposed to be, from the work I usually do. I put it up as a challenge to myself to step out side my comfort zone and view it as art. I have tens of thousands of images. As I go through them I know that many tell my story, but in this exhibit I wanted to look at form and line and how color can define shape. It didn’t work out that way.

As I have said, all of my photographs tell a story, my story of course, but they can easily be made into anyone’s story. After all, we bring ourselves to all of our experiences.

The story beneath these images is one of rust and renewal. This is my story. It is what happens when things fall apart and everything we expected becomes a fine cloud of dust as it slips through our fingers. That’s the opening, the time where things can be renewed, “the crack where the light gets in” to paraphrase Leonard Cohen.

In 2009 I kept a photo journal on tumblr.com. I carried a camera, a small Canon G7, with me everyday and took pictures.  I posted one every day with my thoughts. It turned out to be quite a year, more than I deserved or expected. The blog is still up and once in a while, less as time goes on, I revisit a day. It serves me well, I understand the code in the captions I wrote. I recommend trying this some time. It is shared here just as a reference hobokendays365 24/7

In case you are unable to see the show before it is taken down:

April 1, 2016 to April 24, 2016

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Looking Into the LIght

March 29th, 2016

LookingAnn_Don Tom_Domma

 

 

 

I am thrilled to be showing my work with the following artists in this four person show. I have shown with Tom Egan and Don Sichler before, both photographers, and always look forward to seeing their latest work. Donna O’Grady’s work is unique combining old tin ceiling tiles with her wonderful paintings.

I have chosen four of my photos for this exhibit that focus on getting up close and personal with the everyday unseen.  I will be talking about my work at the Artist Talk on April 17th at 3;30 as a part of the Hoboken Studio Tour.

“Looking Into the Light,” an exhibition of traditional and digital mediums by four artists, will be open to the public from April 1 to 24, 2016 at the hob’art gallery, Monroe Art Center, 720 Monroe Street, Hoboken. The artists, Don Sichler, Ann Kinney, and Tom Egan and Donna O’Grady experiment with established painting and photographic mediums to produce avant-garde images. A reception to meet the exhibitors will be held on Saturday, April 2nd, 6-8pm. On Sunday, April 17th at 3:30pm, the artists will talk about their artwork and welcome questions from visitors. Gallery hours are Wednesday to Sunday, 1 to 5pm and by appointment. The artists thank the Monroe Art Center and the hob’art gallery for their support of this exhibition.

“Looking into the Light,” accurately describes the compatibility of the four artists who are part of the hob’art gallery’s upcoming exhibition. Like four notes blending harmoniously, the thread of abstracted realities and ‘other worldliness’ is immediately apparent although each artist executes their ideas with a different technique.

Don Sichler:  Don’s photos in this exhibit are called street art. The images were all found and photographed on his frequent walks around town. Don says he is an artist but he doesn’t create art, he discovers it and records it with his camera.

Ann Kinney: Her images are derived from nature with and underlying current of earth, water, fire, air tempered by human forces. Images that intrigue her, combine shape and color in time and place, which tell the stories of everyday lives. They are the result of her journey during which she has been photographing people and their places. She would like her photographs to serve as springboards for the viewer’s imagination.

Tom Egan: His photos are reinvented landscapes that are created from local parks and scenery in the intensely colored mirrored imagery

Donna O’Grady: Her paintings incorporate antique ceiling tiles that frame her portraits and landscapes.  Using underpainting techniques to capture light and atmosphere, her pieces capture mysterious snapshots of the mind.

Gallery Hours: Thursday – Sunday, 1–5pm and by appointment, (201) 683-6252

The building entrance is on 8th Street between
Monroe and Jackson streets. Free parking is available at the rear of
the building on Jackson Street.

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Murals, Art and People

February 12th, 2016
daze_mural_final

Coney Art Walls: Under the Sea Summer (Brooklyn 2015)
  Student murals.   Art Direction: Chris Daze Elli

Making Murals and the Flower Show

I am a Master Gardener in training and part of the program includes volunteer hours, so I agreed to sit at the Flower Show at the NJ Convention Center in Edison, NJ. I had not been to the Flower Show in well over 15 years and it seems to have changed into a  quasi flower show with a lot of crafts and people selling solar panels, “Bathfitter” conversions and pillows. But that is not where I am going with this. I want to talk about murals.

Artists and Others

When you sit at a table at a public interest venue, you meet all sorts of people and so it was that this 60 something man came to talk to us. His wife had a booth selling jewelry and he was just checking things out. He claimed that while his wife was an artist, he was not, but simply a supporter of art, one who pushes it forward.

He was, he said, very much involved with a program called 20/20, which grew out of a need for NYC’s under performing (read under funded) schools to bring art back into the schools, where it had been lost due to budget cuts. This was accomplished through partnering with community organizations and churches and artists. It started with the visual arts and bringing murals into the school buildings or, I should say, on the school walls and buildings. Now called Thrive Collective, it includes music, media and mentoring.

Thrive Collaboration: Bringing Art To Schools

All murals are student designed under an volunteer artist. It is all about encouraging collaboration and building community and in the end the completed mural stand as public art for everyone.

The Process

The process is a step by step process. Beginning with a concept and design, to surface preparation, design transfer, coloring and completion.

The Murals

Check out some of the murals:

School Mural Portofolio

 

 

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Robert Frank

February 3rd, 2016

“It’s a good thing not to go back in your life.” -Robert Frank, 2016

Robert Frank and The Americans

 

 

A retrospective of Robert Frank’s work is now at NYU  Tisch School of the Arts. At 91, I have to agree with his thoughts about going back in your life, there is just too much and not enough time.

I have always admired his book The Americans (1958). Born in Switzerland, he came to America in 1946, after WWII and with the perception of America as “the” place to be. Robert Frank was greatly influenced by Walker Evans and in 1955 he traveled across the United States photographing its people in their places. What Frank found was the contrast of wealth and culture with poverty and race. His work ended up being much like Walker Evan’s view of America chronicled in  American Photo-graphs (1938). Although his style was very different, since he deviated from traditional photographic constraints and was much maligned in critical reviews. This style soon became the norm for photo-journalists, made possible, in part by smaller cameras.

The retrospective runs until February 11, 2016, There will also be screenings of his documentary films.

Robert Frank: Books and Films, 1947-2016

 

VIEW PHOTOS:

ROBERT FRANK

WALKER EVANS

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A Mosaic Life

January 28th, 2016

I have recently gotten into mosaic art, primarily through the back door of stained glass, which left me with so many small shards of glass that I was running out of shoe boxes for storage. I understand it is a form of therapy for me and although my real therapist worked wonders, this is a lot less costly if not more time consuming.

Although I am not up to doing the house yet, excessive  is not something I shy away from. I can glue down little pieces of glass for a long time. I admire compulsiveness in a strange way, so that when I first heard of Cheri Pann and Gonzalo Duran, I had to see more.

This video is on Houzz, and although I have seen many pictures of this house, I think the video shows the human side of creativity.

The Venice, California Mosaic Home

 

 

You can also Like them on Facebook and visit if you are in the area.

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Hello world: Frozen Pants

January 1st, 2016

I have left “Hello World!” as my title for my first post  because it is iconic and this makes it all the more real to my state of mind. I want to engage in a dialogue on art. So there! ….and life, and truth, and relevance and this case “street art”!

Frozen Pants

screen-shot-2016-01-19-at-3-39-04-pmSaturday, January 23, and it’s another storm of the century.  I am not sure if  Tom Grotting of Minneapolis is an artist but under my definition he would be. I think the primary goal of the artist is to give people an opportunity to look at the world in a different way and this he does.

He freezes pants and, I guess, Minneapolis is the perfect place, since it rarely gets above freezing in the winter. He has been doing this for years. You can see his work on  Facebook . Tom told “Bring Me the News” it takes about a half hour to shape his pants as they freeze. He has been encouraging others to share their work as  well on Facebook.

In a recent ABC News interview he said, “I mostly do it for…screen-shot-2016-01-19-at-3-23-28-pmDiane, the winter gets a little long and she doesn’t like winter very much so it’s mostly entertainment for Diane.” Although he has been doing this for a few years now, it seems to have gotten him a lot of attention this time.

[Photos by Tom Grotting]

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