Plaza

Plaza Artist MaterialsPlaza Artist Materials, Hands on Creativity, Encaustics

Plaza Artist Materials, Hands on Creativity event brought together Philly art experts with high quality art materials for a weekend of fun, education and creativity in the well stocked art supply store on Chestnut Street. As I moved from table to table chatting with presenters I learned about encaustics, oil paints, acrylics, colored pencils, fabric dye and more. Store manager Suzanne Knodle introduced me to the Plaza Artist Materials President/owner Eric Zelenko and we talked about the business of selling art supplies.

“We have thirteen stores in six states. It’s an interesting story how we came to Philadelphia. People really don’t know that much about us, so, what we want to be able to do is let people know that there are additional options for people who are creating art. The Hands on Creativity event is typical of the things we want to do, so that people can come in and play with the stuff. Because artists like to explore and experiment.”

Plaza Artist MaterialsPlaza Artist Materials, Hands on Creativity, Faber Color Pencils

The market for art supplies in Philly has changed a lot. Pearl disappeared, I used to spend at least $100. every time I went in there, I don’t know how they decided to close. Utrecht is gone and there’s no parking near Blick’s.

“You know, the way I look at it, our job is to do the best we can do. And take as much feedback from customers as we can and if that means adding product or helping them understand how to use it, that’s what we’ll do. Every person we have working here is an artist.”

Your store is in a great location, the neighborhood in West Philly is becoming the arts destination that it deserves to be.

“It’s really interesting because, as you can see, Drexel and Penn are in a massive building zone and there are all these neighborhoods around where a lot of students live. The hope is, and the schools are committed, too, to bringing people back into the city so that this doesn’t turn into sort of a ghost town. And so these neighborhoods are becoming populated with great people. Philly is a great city, it’s a funny place, I’m from New York originally and I live in D.C. now, but Philly is a city that people really love and can live in, it’s really vibrant. Not like other cities that don’t really know what they want to be. To me, Philly is very vibrant and people really live in their neighborhoods.”

Plaza Artist MaterialsPlaza Artist Materials, Hands on Creativity, Liquitex acrylics

“My hope, with all the commitments that the schools are making, that this becomes a place that people want to wander around. There are lots of people on the street. I see people walking their dogs, so they must live close by.”

Just a few years ago this was not a neighborhood I would wander around in.

“I know, I remember when I was in college, I had some friends here, and people would say this was a terrible neighborhood. And look at it now, right?”

What are your future plans for this location?

“We’ve been here just a little over a year, we just passed the year mark. I think we’re settling in and I think it’s about making as many connections to the artist community as we can, introducing ourselves and supporting the artists in a variety of ways. People who create art, one of the things that has always struck me, is that if you look at great artists, people want to connect with each other.

I’m sure they’re competitive in some ways but the people who create art seem to need to commune. Hopefully, what we can do is be a place where people come together to do that. By the way, we have all these bare walls and we want to invite people to exhibit their work. We’ve done some things with Drexel, but that’s something we will be doing more of.” – Plaza Artist Materials President/owner Eric Zelenko

Plaza Artist MaterialsPlaza Artist Materials, Hands on Creativity

Thanks Plaza Artist Materials for all the great swag! I took home oils and solvents from Gamblin, acrylics from Liquitex, Canson pastel paper, Rembrandt pastel sampler, 1980 oils and loads of informative materials. The presenters really took time to educate me on the benefits of the products they demonstrated and possible hazards to avoid. I did not know that you should never clean your brushes with turpentine if you’re using cadmium paint because it can cause the toxins to seep into your skin.

Next time you are shopping at Plaza Artist Materials say, ‘Hi’, to store manager Suzanne for me.

Plaza Artist Materials is located at 3200 Chestnut Street, Retail E, Philadelphia, PA 19104, on the Drexel University Campus on the south side of Chestnut Street between 32nd and 33rd Streets.

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Starstruck

Starstruck: The Fine Art of AstrophotographyBabak Tafreshi (Iran), Alamut Starry Night, Archival inkjet print, 24 x 23 inches. Collection of the Bates College Museum of Art

Starstruck: The Fine Art of Astrophotography opens November 8

(Doylestown, PA) The James A. Michener Art Museum proudly announces a spectacle of galactic proportions entitled Starstruck: The Fine Art of Astrophotography. The exhibition is curated by Anthony Shostak, the Bates College Museum of Art, Lewiston, Maine, and will be on view through February 8, 2015.

Among the first major exhibitions examining astrophotography as an art genre, Starstruck presents a dazzling array of images that gives insight into this rapidly evolving field. The exhibition features stunning images by 34 artists from around the world. The installation features a variety of extraordinary themes, from landscapes and oceans to galaxies, moons and cavernous sky objects.

The exhibition, on loan from the Bates College Museum of Art, was selected by a distinguished team of jurors comprised of Weston Naef, curator emeritus of photography at the J. Paul Getty Museum; Dennis di Cicco, pioneer of CCD astrophotography and senior editor, Sky & Telescope magazine; and Jerry T. Bonnell, co-editor/author NASA‘s Astronomy Picture of the Day. A 242-page color catalog documents the exhibition, illustrating each photograph and featuring essays by the jurors and by Eric Wollman, professor of physics at Bates College.

Anthony Shostak, curator of education for the Bates College Museum of Art, shares that, “…the images in Starstruck are nothing less than overwhelming – depicting humbling, glorious delights that are often invisible to both the naked eye and even the telescope, and are revealed only through photographic means.”

Now a familiar topic in publications like Sky & Telescope and Astronomy magazines, astrophotography is a worldwide phenomenon, illustrating the convergence of art and science as told through the lens of a camera.

Lisa Tremper Hanover, Director & CEO states, “We are delighted to host this exhibition and provide the Museum’s guests with a view of the vastness of our universe through the camera’s lens. The photographs illustrate an array of colors, beauty and mystique of the stars and planets that would not otherwise be visible to the naked eye.”

Starstruck will be complemented by a variety of educational programs including a lecture entitled Inter Stellar Space Travel on November 9; a Curator Gallery Talk on November 9; an Educators Open House on November 13; a lecture entitled The Hubble Outdone? on November 13; and a Hubble Roadshow and Film Screening of Saving Hubble on November 20. For a full calendar of exhibit-related events visit the Museum’s website MichenerArtMuseum.org.

Starstruck: The Fine Art of Astrophotography is generously supported by Visit Bucks County, with additional support provided by the Bucks County Foundation and Bloomingdale’s.

About The James A. Michener Art Museum

The James A. Michener Art Museum collects, preserves, interprets and exhibits American Art, with a focus on art of the Bucks County region. The Museum presents changing exhibitions that explore a variety of artistic expressions, and offers a diverse program of educational activities that seek to develop a lifelong involvement in the arts as well as nurture a wide range of audiences. We also seek to educate our community about nationally and internationally known Bucks County artists of all creative disciplines. The James A. Michener Art Museum is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums.

The James A. Michener Art Museum is located at 138 South Pine St., Doylestown, PA. The Museum is openTuesday through Friday, 10:00 am – 4:30 pm; Saturday 10:00 am – 5:00 pm and Sunday noon – 5:00 pm. For more information, visit MichenerArtMuseum.org or call 215.340.9800.

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Essence

Su Knoll Horty, Bluestone Fine Art Gallery Su Knoll HortyEssence 8, 30″ x 40″, oil on canvas, Bluestone Fine Art Gallery

Bluestone Fine Art Gallery,142 North 2nd Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106, presents ESSENCE. Landscape Perspective in the Abstract on November 3, 2014. The exhibition features new paintings by Su Knoll Horty.

Su Knoll Horty Artist Statement

“Just be so good that you cannot be ignored.” Su Knoll Horty uses this quote from Steve Martin as daily inspiration when working on her paintings. Working primarily with oils, using a palette knife to layer on the color, then scraping or rubbing it off. This creates the transparent layer of color and shaped ‘stains’ Su uses to build her color relationships, focusing on the effects that adjoining colors have on one another.Su says, “My challenge as a painter is to create emotion through the use of color. I am inspired by the complexities of color and how color fields create harmonious and often, unexpected dimensions. I explore the ways compositions change through layering and fusing color. Spaces of clarity juxtapose with spaces of intricacy, and vibrancy contrasts with calm.”

Su Knoll Hortys latest work explores a simplified landscape space, which often contrasts organic shapes and perspectival elements with simple bands or static rectangles of color. These contrasting elements give an added vibrancy and movement to the already vibrant colors Su uses.

Su Knoll Horty, Bluestone Fine Art Gallery Su Knoll Horty, Essence 8, 30" x 40", oil on canvas, Bluestone Fine Art GallerySu Knoll HortyEssence, 30″ x 40″, oil on canvas, Bluestone Fine Art Gallery

About Bluestone Fine Art Gallery

Established in 2011 by Pam ReganBluestone Fine Art Gallery has been operating in the Old City District of Philadelphia on the corner of Second and Quarry streets. The gallery features original works by contemporary and traditional artists in a range of mediums, including painting, ceramics and sculpture. Our artists’ hail from Philadelphia and around the country – many of the city’s most well-known and emerging artists have exhibited works in both group and solo shows.

Each month, we host new exhibitions that kick off during Philadelphia’s popular First Fridays that bring hundreds of art lovers into the neighborhood for special events and openings year round. Our goal is to showcase the most engaging works in a welcoming atmosphere during regular business hours and by private appointment. We work closely with collectors, designers, and architects, helping clients select the original art best suited to residences, businesses and other destinations in the tri-state area. Bluestone Fine Art Gallery is free and open to the public.

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Way

William Way LGBTQ Community CenterWilliam Way LGBTQ Community Center Group Art Show: Gina Giles, Thom Duffy, Lance Pawling

Thom DuffyGina Giles, and Lance Pawling are the winners of the 2013 William Way LGBT Community Center Juried Art Competition and their exciting and diverse bodies of work will be on display this September and October in the gallery.

Thom Duffy will display beautifully created watercolor still lifes on paper featuring an autumn theme. Gina Giles has exhibited in The Plastic Club, Off the Wall Gallery at Dirty Franks, Hicks Art Center Gallery, and more and will display photographic works. Pawling is a performance and installation artist known for his work with the improvisational theater group Dumpsta PlayersLance Pawling’s found-object sculptures ‘provide the viewer with a magnetic vounce through wonder. Evocative, often disturbing and equally alluring, his work redefines our ideas of refuse.’ The show will be on view in the gallery from through October 31, 2014.

The group art show at William Way LGBTQ Community Center presents three of Philadelphia’s most interesting and influential artists that were chosen from the 2013 Juried Community Art Show. I believe these artists are influential because they each are living their own authentic artistic self-actualized selves and influencing Philadelphia’s artistic culture.

Gina Giles is documenting the drag scene in Philadelphia, a performance art with a long Philadelphia history, through candid and backstage photographs. Thom Duffy is a fine painter who created a whole new body of work, beautiful Autumnal watercolors in a variety of sizes. Thom also operates a successful business, Thom Duffy Massage Therapy LLC, ‘offering a full array of therapeutic massage services for men and women to achieve specific targeted goals and physical well-being’. His job is to make you feel better. Lance Pawling, who’s day job is at The Philadelphia Museum of Art, is influential because of his fearless performances in burlesque shows as well as his visual art skills. I caught the latest performance of The Weird Beard Review, an all male burlesque review, at L’Tage and watched the man with the Dali moustache transform from art nerd to bearded lady sex bomb before my eyes.

October is Gay History Month and a lot of gay history is being made around the world. ‘LGBT History Month is a month-long annual observance of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender history, and the history of the gay rights and related civil rights movements. It is observed during October in the United States, to include National Coming Out Day on October 11.[1] In the United Kingdom, it is observed during February, to coincide with a major celebration of the 2005 abolition of Section 28.’ (Wikipedia).

The group art show at William Way LGBTQ Community Center is part of gay history now and I believe that the main takeaway is that ‘gay art’ is art just like LGBTQ people are people. Living an authentic life with a freedom of spirit and nature just feels right and brings happiness to our lives.

Read my interviews with each of these artists on DoNArTNeWs Philadelphia Art News Blog.

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Found

Lost and Found, Philadelphia Dumpster DiversLost and Found, an exhibit of found object based mixed-media work by members of the Philadelphia Dumpster Divers, will open at West Chester University October 30th through December 12th, 2014.

Lost and Found Opening: Thursday, October 30, 2014, 4:00 – 7:00pm
West Chester University’s E.O. Bull Center for the Arts
2 East Rosedale Ave., West Chester, PA 19383

Gallery Hours of Operation: Monday – Friday: 9:00am – 4:00pm, Saturday: Noon – 4:00pm

“The West Chester University Department of Art + Design is housed in the new E.O. Bull Center for the Arts which provides a state-of-the art setting conducive to creative endeavors. Intensive and individualized instruction prepares the young artist for work at the professional level. The art galleries present an ever-changing exhibition of work from all areas of the visual arts.” – E.O. Bull Center for the Arts

“For over 20 years, the Philadelphia Dumpster Divers – a group of about 40 Philadelphia-area based artists, collectors and friends – have been working with found objects and recycled materials to create extensive works and group efforts.” – Philadelphia Dumpster Divers

 

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