moving parts still on the move

Freshly finished clamshell boxes for "Moving Parts" (image: Frederick Nunley)Two years ago, we launched Moving Parts, the yearlong collaboration between Pyramid Atlantic Art Center and CityDance. Since then, the ten participating artists and handful of tenacious volunteers have been creating an edition of 50 custom clamshell boxes that house each artist’s edition of 50 artist books.

Clamshell boxes drying under weight (image: Frederick Nunley)When you work on a project of this scale in 3-hour increments twice a month, of course it takes time. What a treat it was, then, to recently immerse ourselves for five full days in a near-final push to finish the edition.

We made a lot of progress, completing a fresh batch of finished boxes, and covering all remaining components (trays, cases, foil-stamping).

Once again, our über-volunteer Frederick Nunley was on the scene, lending not only his skilled handwork to the task, but steady and appreciated enthusiasm for the project.

A big thank you to Gretchen Schermerhorn for hosting us in Pyramid’s studios, and to others who showed up to help, including Kieu Lam, Sarah Levine, and Moira McCauley.

When I return to the US in a few months, we plan to finish the project. All that remains are some boxes and the project catalogs. With a little help from friends, these too will get done. And then it’s on to getting the edition into collectors’ hands, an even longer process!

amazing grace

Ever wonder what it takes to pull off a large-scale installation? I just found out, thanks to the many people involved in bringing Grace’s Garden to life. On behalf of microWave Project, an organization that matches artists with unique and public opportunities, Grace is now on exhibit in the entrance foyer of Huntington Mall.

I was one of two artists invited to create a fashion-inspired installation in honor of the mall’s re-opening after a massive renovation and upgrade. A Torpedo Factory colleague, Lisa Schumaier, created a seasonal installation of recycled materials, A Recycled Fairytale.

Grace consists of hundreds of hand-made, -sewn, and -folded paper flowers from fine art and tissue papers. A local mall store, The RoseTree Boutique, contributed hundreds of paper shopping bags that were transformed into flowers and origami fans for Grace’s train. Hundreds of paper butterflies comprise her fascinator (hat) that “fly” up through the skylight in the 30-foot ceiling.

Installing "Grace's Garden" (image: Allison Nance) "Grace's Garden" (detail) by Kelly O'Brien (image: Allison Nance) 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Handmade paper flowers for "Grace's Garden" (image: Allison Nance)The elements for Grace’s gown, fascinator, and train were started months ago in my home studio in Germany. Most everything was pre-cut, flat-packed and shipped to the US.

There, a virtual workshop of helpers hand-assembled flower petals, folded origami fans, and generally worked non-stop up to and through the four-day installation.

We topped the whole thing off with a red carpet gala, featuring a dancing flash mob and celebrity appearances. The best part for me was sitting quietly to the side to watch people’s reactions to Grace.

The best surprises were the grown men stopping to snap her picture (“My wife has to see this!”) and watching little kids react (“Look Mommy, butterflies!”).

 

 

Allison Nance of microWave Project, Kelly O'Brien, Lisa Schumaier ("A Recycled Fairytale"), and Mary Cook of microWave Project at Huntington Mall Gala

We even garnered a little media attention through the local newspaper and television news.

A project like this does not happen in a vacuum. This was truly a family and friends affair. Moms, dads, husbands, sisters, nieces, a brother-in-law, and lifelong friends were up to their elbows in paper for days on end. A very special thanks to my onsite installation team: Donna O’Brien, Mandy Gordon and Elizabeth Smiley. Not only did these three women put in some crazy hours with me, they each played crucial and unique roles throughout the process. 

Mandy Gordon and "Grace" with her eyelash-protection gearDonna O'Brien and Kelly O'Brien in front of "Grace's Garden"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mary Cook, Elizabeth Smiley, and Mandy Gordon folding RoseTree Boutique shopping bags into origami fans for "Grace's" trainAlso onsite helping were Mary Cook, Allison Nance, Melanie Cox, Kelsey MacDuff, Eric Cook, and Kevin Nance.

Behind-the-scenes flower-makers include: Katie Engen, Katelyn Engen, Brennah Engen, Eric Engen, Bill O’Brien, Rita Evans, and Lindsey MacDuff.

The folks at Huntington Mall could not have been more friendly or helpful. They are: Joe Johnston, Property Manager; Margi MacDuff, Marketing Director; the facilities management team of Devin Holland, Alfonzo Samples and Chris Muncy; and RoseTree Manager Kate McMullen.

 

 

 

The mall is owned by the Cafaro Company, with an equally awesome team: Leonard Bretcko, Director of Construction; Phil Boyd and Hank Picozzi of JJO Construction; Esther Buschau, Director of Corporate Marketing; and Mr. and Mrs. Cafaro themselves, who came out to help celebrate their mall's renaissance.

Phil Boyd, Roger Pahoresky, and Kelly O'Brien hanging "Grace's" swingBehind it all was my husband, Ian. His support made all the difference, before and during the installation. When I got his 4 a.m. text on that final night, “You WILL finish!” I knew everything was going to be fine.

The amount of work and generosity of spirit required to pull this off was, well…amazing. I’m humbled by what people were willing to contribute, thrilled to have the opportunity, and brimming with ideas on what I’d like to do next.

Grace’s Garden on exhibit at Huntington Mall, Barboursville, WV now through January 7, 2012.

getting wild in west virginia!

I leave for West Virginia tomorrow to install my first large-scale paper sculpture installation. I’ve been commissioned by the dynamic duo behind microWave Project to create a fashion-inspired piece for the grand opening of a new shopping mall.

Paper flower studies for installation, "Grace's Garden," at Huntington MallWe (and I say “we” because this is taking a team of helpers!) will be creating a gown made of paper flowers for a mannequin sitting on a swing, over a field of paper flowers, with a 15-foot long paper train flying behind her.

The train will be made of deconstructed paper shopping bags (from our sponsor, naturally), folded into Japanese origami fans. She’ll be wearing a hat made of black velvet paper butterflies that fly up from her hat “through” the skylight in the mall’s ceiling.

I'm thrilled to have this opportunity! It's also wonderful to be sharing the spotlight with another installation artist, Lisa Schumaier. Her work is soulful, playful and unexpected. Lisa is creating a separate piece for the event and, from what I've heard, it's going to be amazing.

If you happen to be in the area, details are below. I’ll try to post images here and on Facebook of the work in progress, and certainly of the finished installation.

There's an invitation-only opening gala this Sunday night, but you can still see the installations through early January.

Huntington Mall Gala Opening, Barboursville, WV. December 4, 2011 – January 15, 2012.

HearSee exhibition at torpedo factory

Art in Public Spaces (APS) is a special effort by the Torpedo Factory Art Center to reach the community through art and educational opportunities. I'm honored to have my artist book, Baby Blue, included in their current exhibition: HearSee, a look at how artists interpret the five senses.

The exhibition runs December 1-31, 2011 in a brand new gallery space within the Torpedo Factory, Studio 9. Participating artists will be on hand to talk about their work at a reception on December 8th, 6-9 pm.

grace finds home

The last project I did before moving from the states was an installation for Art Whino's G40, called Grace in Full Bloom. Shortly after deinstalling, Grace got packed up in her very own custom box and tucked into our shipping container for the ride across the ocean.

Since landing here in Germany on July 1, she's remained in her box, up to her shoulders in pink packing peanuts, waiting patiently to come out and take her rightful spot in my studio. A couple of weeks ago - box cutter in hand - as I started unpacking her, I stopped mid-cut. It suddenly occurred to me: that's me in that box.

"Grace in Full Bloom" up to her neck in packing peanuts.Okay, not really me. But the part of myself that I consider the most sacred and core to who I am. Clearly, we (Grace and I) haven't been ready to come out of our box and settle into this new house. How could we, with all the chaos of the move and challenge of starting over, not to mention a dog bent on destroying anything he deems mine every time I leave the house?

Until that moment, I hadn't been able to put my finger on why I was keeping Grace under wraps. Nearly all of the unpacking was finished, but she remained safely ensconced. Once I realized this, it became very clear for me what to do: I needed to welcome Grace home. But first, I had to create a suitable environment for her.

Last week, I unleashed a swarm of book paper butterflies on my studio. They fly in from our front door, down behind the stairwell, and down to Grace's feet...

"Grace Finds Home" (installation in home studio), with Beverly Ryan's oil paining, "Dancing Through.""Grace Finds Home" (paper installation in home studio), detailAnother batch flies up out of a light fixture, across the wall and into our guest bedroom.

"Grace Finds Home" (paper installation in home studio)"Grace Finds Home" (paper installation in home studio)A fellow-G40 artist inspired the light fixture idea - he had metal butterflies made from spray paint cans swarming from a light fixture on the first floor.

"Grace Finds Home," paper installation in home studio (detail)The butterflies are die-cut from vintage French book texts. I had two copies of Le Mariage de Figaro Tome II, making serendipidous use of black and white photography in the book.

"Grace Finds Home," paper installation in home studio (detail)"Grace" now home

two more berlin gems

My friend Jen just reminded me that we stumbled onto an amazing little boutique on Rosa-Luxemburg Strasse in Berlin: LANGHEIN. Inge Langhein designs other-worldly confections for brides and ready-to-wear. Actually, it was the installation of her work in her boutique that took everything to the next level. Her dresses were suspended from an arching iron grid - a nesty dome across the ceiling - each piece floating gracefully like wearable art.

Am kicking myself that I didn't ask her if I could take a photo. This image that I found online doesn't do her work or her shop justice.

Inge Langhein's boutique, BerlinAnother gem was the exhibition by Terhi Heino, an installation artist from Helsinki. I love when artists elevate ordinary and recycled materials to the sublime. In Terhi's case, she uses fish fins, used tea bags, and mylar to fashion mesmerizing works, both tiny and room-sized.

Tea bag installation by Terhi HeinoMy hunger for paper dresses was nicely fed by her tea bag clothing hanging like drying laundry from wire hangers.

Skirt by Terhi HeinoAnd her mylar wall pieces look like giant icy crystals jutting from the wall.

Juhlat by Terhi Heino

berlin: a great way to begin

Has it really been over three weeks since I last posted? August has been a whirlwind of unpacking, settling in, and home-focused activities. This past weekend, Ian and I ran off to Berlin for a few days to celebrate our fifth wedding anniversary. Little did I realize how much I needed to shake loose of the tremendous impact of our big transition and just go play.

View from our hotel in Mitte, Berlin

We chose Berlin over Paris (a sentimental favorite, since we were engaged in Paris), mainly because we wanted a place where most restaurants wouldn't be shut down or venues flooded with American tourists. Instead, we got a city full of galleries on sommerpause and European tourists. But complaining I am not! It was a terrific place to begin our commitment to get away monthly for a long weekend. That is, after all, one of the reasons we made this move: to get out and experience places that otherwise would be less accessible from our home in the US.

Museum Island, Berlin

Holocaust Memorial, Berlin (image: Ian Lowe)Instead of attempting to take in all the major sites off the bat, we organized our exploration of major districts by zeroing in on what galleries we wanted to see. Well, and which ones appeared to be open. It's a fun way to see a city, fueled by something we're both passionate about. Some good resources helped us find our way, including ArtUpdate.com/Berlin and the iPhone app EyeOut.

Over three days, we entered probably twenty galleries, although we peered in the windows of far more. The search for many was not obvious - tucked back in courtyards, down alleys, and up flights of stairs only accessible by ringing a bell and being buzzed in.

Love the colors in the U-Bahn stations, Berlin

U-Bahn station, Berlin (image: Ian Lowe)Alexanderplatz U-Bahn station, Berlin (image: Ian Lowe)U-Bahn station, Berlin (image: Ian Lowe)Once inside, people were generally welcoming, if not eager to tell us about the art. The folks at Figge Von Rosen Galerie were particularly engaging and friendly, and we discovered the amazing photography of Luzia Simons at Alexander Ochs Galleries.

Berlin is, like any major city I suppose, one part gentrified, two parts gritty edge. The energy I felt there, though, was different - a kind of optimistic, happy, focused buzz of people busy getting on with the business of rebirth and reinvention. Huge swaths of the city are still rebuilding post-Wall, morphing from Cold War wasteland to thriving cafe society. This took me by surprise. I guess I didn't realize there was so much active recovery still going on there.

Potsdammer Platz, Berlin (image: Ian Lowe)

Kunsthaus Tacheles, Berlin

One unexpected discovery was what must have been the original inspiration for Art Whino's G40 summit. Since 1990, Kunsthaus Tacheles has been a center for artists of all walks, but particularly street art or new brow. Tacheles is Yiddish for telling it like it is. The venue's website says it best:

After the Berlin Wall came down in November 1989, a subculture which had its main focus on autonomy, spontaneity and improvisation arose in the former East Berlin areas Mitte, Prenzlauer Berg and Friedrichshain. Artists and individualists from all over the world used the plurality of available free spaces to put alternative lifestyles to the test.

Kunsthaus Tacheles, Berlin

Kunsthaus Tacheles, BerlinTacheles' artists are now in danger of being evicted by developers. While certain aspects of the space does the brand no favors (the stairwells were pretty rank), it would be a shame to see what Tacheles represents be pushed underground or marginalized.

Ian Lowe at Alexandr Rodin's Global Warning exhibition, Kunsthaus Tacheles, BerlinAnother delight was the road trip between Königstein and Berlin through endless wind turbine farms. What is it about these giant sentinels that mesmerizes me? Surely there's an artist book about them in my future. For now, I'm delighted with some of my images and am seriously considering a road trip expressly for the purpose of chasing them up close and personal. We got pretty close at a rest stop or two.

Wind turbines enroute to BerlinWind turbines enroute to BerlinWind turbines enroute to Berlin

don't abandon my esthetic

In doing research for a project later this year, I'm reminded not to abandon my esthetic. The project calls for working in ways that are much bigger and bolder than I'm used to. However, it doesn't mean that I can't stay true to who I am in the process.

The details will remain a bit of a mystery here until the project is more official, but for now, let this fabulous video of Violise Lunn's work in paper couture be a hint and an inspiration. The narration is in French, but even if you don't understand the words, the images speak for themselves.

foraging for art supplies round 2

Café Hauptwache, FrankfurtDrove into Frankfurt today to meet the AWCT's Art & Culture group for coffee. We met at the historic Café Hauptwache, directly above the Hauptwache UBahn (subway) station. After navigating a nearby parking garage (driving in these narrow garages still feels harrowing), I found my group. Once again, I got a warm welcome from a very international set of women, with only a few of us from the US.

The real reason I drove, however, was my next stop: Boesner Art. And what an art store! Their tagline is accurate:

Boesner Art Supply: professional artists materials from the international market leader at unusually low prices.

Apparently, they're a wholesaler, although the prices seemed retail (in euros, everything seems reasonable until you remember to add another 40% for the exchange rate). Nonetheless, I received my official wholesale ID on the spot, with my name, address, and barcode efficiently printed onto the little plastic card.

There are two floors of warehouse space, chock full of art materials for every medium: printmaking, painting, sculpture, metalwork, ceramics, woodworking, mozaic, and so on. After wandering around in their massive paper area with my mouth hanging open for awhile, I got my wits about me and started recognizing comfortingly familiar brands such as Arches, Hahnemühle, and Strathmore. Stacked to the ceiling, mind you, but familiar just the same. Along with your fine art and handmade papers, you can buy Kutrimmers, printing presses, and other over-sized equipment that I've only been able to order online in the states.

Boesner's Frankfurt location

There's a nice adhesives selection, where I chose a 1000 ml tub of Guardi dispersion glue, the equivalent of ph neutral PVA - or so the description indicates.

The bookbinding materials are fairly robust for a place that's not a specialty supplier, so I was able to restock my large spool of buchbinderzwirn (binder's thread) that our dog recently ate.

I couldn't resist three little red paper notebooks in different sizes, with old-school blank labels on front.

 

And then there are the artsy gifts I scored that I can't reveal, in case their future recipients are reading this post.

This was the first of many trips I'm sure I'll be making to Boesner's. It's only 20 minutes from home by car, dangerously close. Today's goal was to find it, and get the lay of the land. Check and check. No more foraging required, now that I've found the mothership.

foraging for art supplies

Made my first solo excursion into Frankfurt today, motivated by the search for a decent art supply store. I also wanted to test the train commute to the Goethe Institute, where I’ll probably be taking German classes three days a week soon.

Overall, I’m pleased with the outing, mishaps and all. Install and successfully configure the RMV transportation app to my iPhone? Check. Use it to find and purchase my tickets (just flash the QR code and go!) into Frankfurt? Check. Find the Goethe Institute, after wandering through a lively farmer’s market – complete with packed wine bar tent at 1 pm on a Friday? Check. Get on the connecting train to find Idee, the local crafting store? Uh, not quite.

I did get on the correct train, but failed to see (let alone understand) the “out of service” sign on the front. People got off, and I got on (clearly oblivious that I was the only one). The train pulled out and then started to slow down, stopped, and all the lights went off. Between stations. A cleaning man hopped on and picked up trash. Then another man appeared, speaking to me in German.

He did not sprechen English, but promptly got out his mobile phone, called his English-speaking wife and handed me the phone. By then, I had figured out my error. He motioned for me to follow him and sit there, right behind his driver’s compartment, and don’t move. I chatted with his wife while, train-in-service, we cruised through three more stations to my destination. This very nice man opened his compartment door to make sure I knew that this was my station, and off I went.

Idee Art & Craft, FrankfurtWhich brings me to Idee, a two-story space just around the corner from Frankfurt’s Zeil, a lively pedestrian shopping area.

Frankfurt's Zeil shopping area, near IdeeIdee is like a well-stocked, extremely neat, attractively merchandised Michael’s. They’re big into scrapbooking, artificial flowers, découpage, beading and other crafty things. Seem to have a decent painting section, too. Reminded me a bit of Pearl Art & Craft, but not as fine art-focused as say, Plaza Art Supply or book arts-oriented as Bookmakers and Talas. Idee will do in a pinch, but I’m looking forward to getting to Boesner, apparently the best fine art supply spot in Frankfurt, although more accessible by car.

Back home in Konigstein

impromptu installation

We arrived a week ago in Germany and are settling into our new home in the endlessly charming town of Königstein. While our household goods float across the Atlantic for four weeks, we’re rattling around in our empty house and making the best of our “executive expat” rental furniture package. No complaints, actually – so much nicer than living in yet another transitional place for a month.

In the meantime, in addition to navigating the myriad details of daily life in a language I don’t speak and culture that is noticeably different from the US, I’ll be working on small projects that I mailed ahead. Today, as I unpacked two boxes of art tools and materials, I thanked myself for sending the gift of something familiar and grounding: art!

One of the projects is to make progress on an edition of 50 miniature artist books for the Moving Parts boxed set. The books are small accordion-fold pieces that expand into a wearable tutu. The 234-inch long strips of handmade paper that will become tutus turned into an impromptu installation as I hung them from our second floor banister to unwrinkle.

View into my future studio on the first floorParis checks things outText is commentary on the connections between dance and lifeImpromptu installation of myTurningPointe accordion books waiting to be worked on

back to joy

This week's been a real challenge so far, as we count down to our overseas move. The movers come on Monday and we move into a hotel until Thursday, when we fly away to Germany. If it's not miscommunications with the pet movers, it's oversights by our relocation company. Each day has brought a fresh set of frustrations and things-going-wrong.

I keep getting little reminders that it's just a matter of perspective. I'm not really into the whole "angel" thing, but a set of Angel Cards that we occasionally use at my yoga studio has delivered great wisdom. Yesterday, I drew the Seek Forgiveness card, after a particularly awkward and painful goodbye over the weekend. Today, I drew See Only Love, reminding me to "look past the seeming errors, mistakes, and misunderstandings" in others.

Then this morning after my schedule unexpectedly changed, I had an opportunity to focus on making small gift books for a set of extraordinarily special people that I'll say a final goodbye to tomorrow. In the making of these books, I regrounded and found happy. I am back to joy and gratitude for this great adventure on which we're about to embark.

the sweetest goodbyes

Centerpiece by Stephanie Gamboa at last night's Pyramid Atlantic goodbye partyThere's a lot of sweet good-byeing going on around here these days. When you leave a place after 37 years, it involves a LOT of good byes. It's one thing to send off a dear friend or close colleague who is moving away. You're losing someone in your daily life and things will change, regardless of how connected you manage to stay after they leave.

Now imagine how it feels to part with everyone at once - family, friends, colleagues, neighbors - within a condensed period of time. For people who move around a lot, I guess it becomes easier. But let me tell you, this is rough.

Nobody likes to say goodbye, and many people will do their best to avoid it. But I'm learning a lot about how to say goodbye well. One thing I can't overemphasize: make time for people that matter. No matter how much "must" get done related to the tasks of moving itself, people trump things every time.

As a recovering to-do list-aholic, this is a key lesson for me to take to heart. I like how it's working out so far (although as things get down to the wire, I'm happy to report that certain people are helping do some of those things on my list!).

Last night was one such occasion, thanks to my dear friend Gretchen Schermerhorn at Pyramid Atlantic. Gretchen, Jose Dominguez, the whole Pyramid gang, and other close friends turned out to wish Ian and me well. And in true Pyramid Atlantic spirit, everyone created a book page that will be bound into an artist book for us.

It's true that parting is such sweet sorrow. But I wouldn't miss it for the world.

t-minus 32 days and counting

Hadiya Williams, Pyramid Atlantic letterpress calendar 2011My husband, Ian, and I looked at each other today and gasped: 32 days until we move our entire home, pets and lives to Germany! We've been so caught up in talking about, deciding about, planning for, and now managing the myriad tasks of an international move, that I'm missing the point.

This blog is titled Designing a Life for a reason. I started it three years ago because I wanted to explore and document my journey of intentionally creating an authentic life. By that I mean making choices and taking action to live wide-awake, and doing what I must to keep the spark alive, feet on the ground, and soul satisfied.

(Re)discovering my artist self has been a big part of the life redesign, well-documented here. While the art is an expression of my transformation, I've left some things out. Not that I need to share my every thought here, but I think that a huge part of "life design" is conjuring the courage to carve an intentional path in the first place.

Which that brings me back to art and Germany. Each of these decisions alone is asking more of me than I could have imagined. Together, they're making my head spin a little, but in a good way.

Nobody could have prepared me for the "stuff" that's getting stirred up by leaving a well-paying 25+ year career in business to hitch a ride on the train of soul-feeding creative opportunities that feel so right I can't believe it. I came of age in the 80s when women wore power suits and many of us out-earned our spouses.

Nobody could have prepared me for what it feels like to be in the enviable but terrifying position of sitting down to face my new professional self, an artist, every day and do the work.

Nobody could have prepared me for the angst of choosing to leave a well-grounded, rich, happy life in Alexandria, VA in exchange for living without regrets by choosing to go on this adventure with my husband.

While my identity appears to be shifting at the speed of light, this has been years in the making. Current events such as shutting down my consulting practice, terminating my lease at Printmakers, and the enormous dog crate in our living room only make it feel as if life is spinning quickly into something I don't recognize anymore.

I don't want to miss a minute of this, though. Instead of just "getting it done," I owe it to myself to pay attention. One way is to start writing about the whole story here. To focus on the art and the backstory that inspires it in the first place.

g40 pics and links

Kelly O'Brien, Grace in Full Bloom (detail) at G40 Art Summit (photo credit: Joshua Yospyn for Worn Magazine)Kelly O'Brien, Grace in Full Bloom at G40 Art Summit (photo credit: Joshua Yospyn for Worn Magazine)Grace in Full Bloom by Kelly O'Brien at Art Whino's G40 Art SummitA big thank you to Art Whino, microWave Project, and Brightest Young Things for pulling off an extraordinary event! I'll continue to post images here as they appear. In the meantime, you'll find some awesome slideshows of all the work here and here. Check out the party scene here and here. And a growing list of press clips about the event here.

grace in full bloom

Finished installing my very first installation yesterday, for the G40 "new brow" art event taking place in DC's U Street Corridor through June 17.

My piece, Grace In Full Bloom, is a celebration of everything I love about the materials I work with and what it means to have found what one truly loves in life. I've set Grace, my handmade-papered dress form, in a paper and moss garden. Her skirt (inspired by a long dancer's tutu) is made of hundreds of dress pattern paper flowers. Butterflies - cut from decades-old French text books that I've been keeping for something special - swarm out of a closet and across the room.

This being my first installation, I had no idea what to expect. Well, the first thing was to face down the fear of doing it. When I told my friend Mandy that I got invited by microWave Project to do this and that it was freaking me out, she immediately said something like, "and you're going to do it, right?"

What is it about art and fear? That's a whole other blog post, but something I've been contemplating for a while. Anyway, I'm very happy with how it turned out.

G40 opens to the public this coming Friday, May 20th at 10 pm. In addition to four floors of awesome art on display daily through June 17, the Opening Weekend looks like big fun:

  • Friday May 20th: Fatback DJs bring 3 of their parties into one space: FATBACK classic/ TENDERLOIN (slow jams in the lounge) / QUE SERA (garage rock in the garage). 10pm. FREE
  • Saturday May 21st: END OF THE WORLD PARTY (in anticipation of rapture) feat: Chris Burns, All Girls Squad DJs (Ultra Nate and Lisa Moody), House of Soul (Live band), Sam Burns, NavBox, Rosario, Roger Samuel, Mike Fisher, Sarah. 10pm. $1 DOOR DONATION
  • Sunday May 22nd: Special POST RAPTURE Pocket Gays Sunday School daytime brunch gathering: food truck food, st.germaine champagne cocktails, games, music etc

I'm sure there will tons of photos to post soon, which I'll do here and on TurningPointe Press' Facebook page.

art whino g40 summit

I'm thrilled to be part of microWave Project's stable of installation artists participating in the massive urban art attack known as G40. From what I've seen so far, this will be quite the scene and series of events.

Event Location
vitaminwater® uncapped LIVE
2213-2217 14th street NW (the corner of 14th and W NW, Washington, DC)

G40 Exhibit Schedule:
Exhibit runs: May 19th-June 17th,  2011
Open Hours: Tuesday & Thursdays: 5 – 10pm,
Fridays & Saturdays: 12pm – 11pm
Sundays: 12pm – 6pm
Mondays: Closed

Entertainment schedule:
Brightest Young Things will curate unique special events in the space six days a week (Tues-Sun) to include live music, dance parties, local designer showcases and fashion events, photobooths, art workshops and talks, stand up comedy, cult movie nights, record fairs and more.

For full details and a sneek peek at some of the art, click here.

the nest project: open through may 15

A big thank you to everyone who came out for Thursday night's opening of The Nest Project!

We had a nice crowd at Target Gallery's Nest exhibition, juried by Gretchen Schermerhorn. We then headed outdoors for a moonlight tour of fifteen nest installations by DC-area arts groups. By the time our tour was finished, the crowd had swelled to over 40 people strolling from nest to nest along the Potomac river.

Albus Cavus nest created by Rosina Teri Memolo Credit: Hilary Kline

The Alexandria Patch does a nice job capturing the spirit of the outdoor installations, with photos by Hillary Kline. The entire event runs through May 15, including 54 instudio nest-themed exhibitions by Torpedo Factory artists.

happy 30th birthday to pyramid atlantic!

Pyramid Atlantic turns 30 this year and we're celebrating with a big party this Saturday! If you're in the DC area, stop by. There will be hands-on demos throughout all of the studios. Come get your hands wet in the papermaking studio, inky in the printmaking and screenprint studios, give the letterpress a crank, or try your hand at foil hot-stamping your name onto bookcloth!

The Gazette's Topher Forhecz offers a nice insider's preview of the festivities here. And help celebrate the occasion by showing your support here.

Come have some birthday cake! 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday at Pyramid Atlantic Art Center, 8230 Georgia Ave., Silver Spring, MD.

Pyramid's Annual Member's Show and the resident Washington Printmakers Gallery Impressions from the Press Room members show will be celebrating their openings at the same time. Call 301-608-9101 or visit www.pyramidatlanticartcenter.org