Sunday, February 5, 2017

Thoughts on "Wings" and "Seeing Red" Exhibitions

I feel truly blessed lately as my artwork has been embraced like no other time in my life. I truly did not know what to expected when I went to the opening of "Wings" at the Tall Grass Gallery in Park Forest (south suburbs of Chicago) on January 21 in the afternoon. The gallery itself was beautiful, but the mall it was in was just about empty. It was also 61 degrees! Well, I was blown away. The space was packed with people. The artwork was incredible. All the artists were given name tags and asked to stand near their work for questions. There was a nice spread of food with a variety of drinks. I binder with artist information was available. The president of the organization (Tall Grass Gallery is a nonprofit gallery run by volunteers) was kind and invited me to become one of their juried artists.  I loved the variety of artwork that was in the show- 45 artists from 8 states. This was the largest call of entries that they have had. I was thankful that the jurors were open-minded when it came to "Wings."  

There were paintings, watercolors, a charcoal drawing (won an award), sculptures, a collage, photographs, and an assemblage. Here are just a few that spoke to me and I was able to get a photograph. I liked the dragonfly monoprint on mylar, Navigating the Familia by Kim Laurel and was not surprised it won one of the awards. The gentleman in the painting with wings was present but not very approachable.  I have always admired Laura Lein-Svencner's collage work and I was taken by her assemblage piece.  By the way, the wings are from a real crow that she found dead on the highway. Lindsay Sanbothe's acrylic painting Cinerors Vulture was amazing. She also won a prize. The gallery presents first, second and third place awards and three "Awards of Excellence." It was a great experience and I left feeling appreciated as an artist. 

On Friday night, I traveled to ARC Gallery in Chicago for the opening of "Seeing Red." All the pieces had to be 18" wide or less and this was an open call so no jurying. This is the second time I have had a piece in the gallery so I was excited.  I entered this time to be supportive of the gallery. ARC Gallery is also an nonprofit gallery, although a women run one, that is more than 40 years old. I have visited exhibitions at the gallery for more than 30 years and never imagined that I would ever have a piece hanging in the gallery. I was surprised, although maybe I should not have been, with the number of political pieces that were in the exhibition including a DVD for sale of the Women's March in Chicago. 

The gallery quickly became full of people, but I was struck by the contrast between the two experiences. There was not a book with artist statements, no name tags so no way to know if other artists were present and two fundraisers was going on- a bake sale and decorated masks from Michael's. Maybe the fundraisers should not have bothered me, but they did.  I was greeted by a member and we talked briefly. My piece is hanging in a great spot that can be seen from the gallery's windows. My friend Barbara Wester's piece, Seeing Red, is two pieces down from mine and I thought how great serendipity can be. I found the exhibition interesting, but I was left wanting more.

Both "Wings" and "Seeing Red" will be available for viewing until February 25. If you have a chance to see either, I would love to hear your thoughts.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Love comments! Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts with me.