A gloved hand grasping a warm gun. The gloved hand, avec pistol, pushes its way through the back of a steeple-shaped enclosure, and the gun is pointed at…..? The gun barrel is wrapped with what appears to be a barbershop pole spiral; all are framed inside a fire-engine red border.
Hold on, that tiny steeple is flanked by feral, sharp wing formations. Chubby jet propulsion feet set the base.
Hmm. Blows my theory about what this little sculpture may be about…..
It’s all subjective! And that’s the fun.
Found objects are the media of choice for artist John Thompson. His show, Accumulation, is on display in the Artspace Theater Gallery at the Center for the Arts through May 26.
Thompson says he sometimes conjures full works out of thin air. He wakes up and “there they are.” The Art Association describes Thompson’s work as experiments in color, pattern and finishes that come together in artistic statements—perhaps queries, perhaps pure observations–about universal themes: good and evil, positive and negative, decay and belief.
Also on display, in the Artspace Main Gallery through the end of April, is the Art Association’s 2010 Members Only Exhibition. The show is a grass roots, community inspired exhibition of artworks by all Art Association members. Hundreds of works are on display, representing all manner of medium. Come and see what Jackson’s creative community dishes out. It’s great dish!
If you have an idea for a show, submit your proposal to the Art Association by May 2010, to be considered for exhibition space in the Artspace Galleries in 2011. The Art Association’s policy and practice “….considers exhibition proposals on an ongoing basis as part of its mission to encourage a vital, creative community. The free contemporary art exhibition programs presented in the Artspace Main, Loft, Theatre and Lobby Galleries enhance the creative and educational environment of the organization and showcase a balance of local, regional and national artists. The Exhibition Committee of the Art Association considers complete exhibition proposals on a periodic basis.”
“The event, the first-ever Art Handling Olympics – a combination roast, “Jackass”-style stunt extravaganza and excuse to drink a lot – drew about 200 people at its height who came to the Ramiken Crucible gallery to watch a dozen four-man teams (art handlers are, by and large, male, and, by and large, large) go head-to-head, demonstrating their skills with a lot of fake art and untold amounts of Bubble Wrap.
“We kind of thought maybe this was the wrong time for this, because everyone who works in this field was worn out from working the Armory Show and everything that goes on around that, but it turned out it was the perfect time, because everybody needed to vent,” Ted Riederer, an artist, former art handler and one of the event’s organizers, said. For some of the events, Mr. Riederer took on the role of a cruel German curator, wearing a tight houndstooth suit and sunglasses, shouting abuse at the handlers like “Nein! Nein!” and “Hold it higher, higher, a little higher!” and “I pay you people to do this?”
dot, dot, dot……..
“Called “The Eliminator,” the final punishing round involved a kind of Nascar-pit-crew competition for the remaining two teams – one named the Kings of Cleats and one whose name was a slightly racy double-entendre. The teams had to take pieces of art out of a wooden crate and, with the clock ticking, assemble them into an installation with no instructions or curatorial guidance. (The “art installation” kit consisted of a blanket, a tambourine, streamers, two rattraps and other things that resembled street trash – in other words, the kinds of things many art handlers have actually had to try to assemble by themselves on the job.)
If the time constraints weren’t tough enough, the art handlers were often heckled during this round by onlookers; one shouted “Derivative!” as the artwork was thrown together. Asked if he and his friends had practiced for the event, Paul Outlaw, a member of the team that went home with the silver, said: “Other than doing this all day, anyway, and sometimes all night? No.”
At the end of the day the Kings of Cleats, in an upset, won the gold, a “lovely handcrafted medal,” as the organizers described it, embossed with an image of a hand holding up a majestic flaming tape dispenser. “Plus, of course, they win enduring fame,” said Shane Caffrey, an art handler for the Marianne Boesky Gallery (daughter of Ivan Boesky!) and the event’s lead organizer.
Mr. Caffrey laughed. “In this business?”