Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Home for the Holidays

The Arts Center/Old Forge is honored to have Artist and Interior Designer, Stephen Wick, behind the design of “Home for the Holidays. “Home for the Holidays” will be on display at the Arts Center/Old Forge November 27 through January 2.

The following is a letter from Stephen Wick, whom The Arts Center/Old Forge is honored to have designed for us this year for “Home for the Holidays”.

I am excited to be donating my time as the designer for “Home for the Holidays”. My idea was to wrap the building like a big present, “a gift” back to the community for all they give. The challenge was finding 60 yards of red ribbon, big bow, and a wreath. Thanks to my sister Clara for searching out and donating the ribbon. Also a big thanks to Phoebe for leading the search throughout the land for the bow the and to Gary Lee for making and hanging the evergreen wreath.
Proudly, we’ve collected over $43,000 in merchandise and gifts for sale, Chris and Alan have spent countless hours hanging and displaying them collectively, in a make-believe house and outdoor-space within the main gallery. Bringing together local and distant communities and artisans’ furniture and craftsmen for the holidays is always rewarding to me. Living here is such a gift especially seeing the community join together to make a whole new energized Arts Center for all to enjoy. ¬

Stephen Wick resides in Eagle Bay and Fort Lauderdale, FL, where he designed a 6000 sq. ft. Mission style home on the New River. He also was the lead designer on a yacht for the Prime Minister of Malaysia, the Versace Shops in Miami Beach and Palm Beach, residences in New York City and South Florida. Wick studied at The Columbus College of Art and Design and earned his B.A. at the Art Institute of Atlanta Georgia and has been designing for over 25 years.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Northeast Quilts Unlimited 2009 A Stunning Representations of Quilts, Needle Arts, and Autumn Leaves

The following article was originally published in the Adirondack Weekly. The 23rd Annual Northeast Quilts Unlimited ended November 11. Thank you to all who were involved.
The Arts Center/Old Forge will open "Home for the Holidays" on November 27th with a wine tasting reception from 4 - 6 pm.

By Jenifer M. Russell, New Hartford, New York
Professional Quilt Maker, Lecturer, Appraiser of Quilts,
Instructor of Fiber Arts

On opening day of the Northeast Quilts Unlimited I walked into the main space of the Arts Center/Old Forge to see the works of the fiber artist and all I thought to myself was ... stunning! They have done it again. The talent, workmanship, and design content of the show are incredible.
There is so much variety in this year's Northeast Quilts Unlimited; color, traditional work, contemporary work, pieces by needle artist, and autumn leaves paintings. Not only will quilt makers enjoy but also art lovers in general. The traditional exhibit is showcased as you enter the main space with Barbara Christen of Chittenango quilt "My Roots" a traditional Baltimore Album quilt which won 1st Place in the Bed Quilt Division and Best of Show. This piece is exquisite with hand appliquéd vines, leaves, roses and birds.
In “Rosamunda” Amy Trumpeter of Danbury, CT, the 3rd place Wall Quilt Winner displays a lovely and colorful floral appliqué. The fabrics are so bright and cheerful; her placement of color is evenly distributed.
Mary Knapp of Watertown, NY entered her quilt "A Study of Visual Perception" with figures of fish and birds shown in a beautiful sky and water background. A large piece, this quilt shows an incredible use of a gradation in color of fabrics and is completely hand quilted.
The Ruth G. Roseneau Gallery space showcases artists of RAFA (Rochester Area Fiber Artists). "Spring's Promise” by Anne Fischer is a beautiful depiction of springtime in fiber. A robin with her nest full of eggs is the center of attention in this piece. The artist creatively uses a collection of yarns and chenille making up the birds nest. Beautiful works of abstract art, large and small are displayed in this gallery. One must see them in person to appreciate the fact that these are all works in fiber.
The Studio Art Quilt Associates (SAQA) works are located in the Members' Lounge Gallery. Visual Arts and Fiber come together in their pieces, with many to view at the show, along with their published book. Also in the Members’ Lounge is an area for children of all ages to try their hand making a quilt pattern using a flannel board and felt pieces of assorted shapes; children’s quilting story books and an embroidery hoop are ready for anyone to try stitching a design.
In the Adirondack Gallery, Mohawk Valley Embroiderer's Guild of America (EGA) and North Country Chapter American Needlepoint Guild (ANG) members showcase their needlework. The artists have created pieces using a wide array of techniques from traditional needlework to contemporary designs and methods. Jane Tanner, ANG, her piece “Glittering Diamonds" effectively incorporates a blend of mixed embroidery threads, beads, and metallic threads in geometric design set on canvas. She has such a fine detail in her work.
In "English Garden" a work of fine cross stitch, Winifred Llewellyn, EGA, shares with us her love of her embroidery and expertise in her handwork. She recently told me that her handwork in fiber arts is her passion, and it really shows.
Upstairs in the Balcony Gallery, Dan Bacich shares with us his compositions in pastels and acrylics with Leaves being the focus of his creative expressions. His paintings along with ceramic tile reproductions of some of his works are available for sale. Dan states ‘while quilters have frequently drawn inspiration from the work of painters, I believe my paintings provide ample proof that the reverse is true as well…there are many common ‘threads’…patterns and colors, subtle geometry of composition…”. His works are wonderful addition to the quilt show as the autumn season is here for us to enjoy.
For those of you who enjoy quilts, but are not quilters, there is a raffle of an Adirondack themed quilt, and there are over 24 quilts and quilted items for sale that were donated by various quilters, the proceeds to benefit fiber arts programs at the Arts Center/Old Forge. Be sure to plan a drive to the Arts Center of Old Forge to experience this year’s Northeast Quilts Unlimited. The exhibit runs until November 11, 2009. Admission is $5 for non-members and $3 members. Groups of 6 or more are admitted at the member’s prices. After seeing the show, make a morning or afternoon of it and have a nice bowl of soup or hot lunch in town to take the chill off the day. Take in the scenery and on the way out of the Arts Center, if you are interested in learning about quilt making and the fiber arts, sign up for one of the many classes offered. Congratulations to the staff and volunteers of the Arts Center/Old Forge and the Northeast Quilts Unlimited.... well done!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Festival of Wreaths

Hooray! The first two wreaths have arrived for the Arts Center’s first Festival of Wreaths. Judging from the two entries that have arrived I foresee that the festival is going to be a beautiful holiday event.

Deb Munyan brought the first wreath made almost entirely from pinecones that she collected locally. It is a truly Adirondack creation, and would be beautiful in any Adirondack home.

The second wreath was donated by Adirondack Accents, a local gift shop located on Old Forge’s, Main Street. Kristen Down, the wreath’s creator attached lots of extra goodies including Adirondack-themed wine glasses and a bottle of wine!

The first two wreaths donated are wonderfully different from one another, and illustrate the idea of the Festival of Wreaths beautifully. What makes each of them so special are the personal touches and the different viewpoints that each of them brought to their wreath. It is exciting to think about what others may create. Be sure to visit the Festival of Wreaths at the Arts Center/Old Forge and place a bid on your favorite. Wreaths will be on display November 27-29.

Also if you would like to donate a wreath, it is not too late to join the fun. Contact the Arts Center for an application. Or follow the attached link to download a link off of our web page.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Case for Common Ground

In light of recent discussions around the Arts Center of the kingmanship between the Arts and Sciences Emerita Miriam Davis Kashiwa wrote this perspective. Any feedback would be welcome.

A perceived kinship between the Arts and Sciences has been long discussed. Art stirs emotions; too, the Sciences delight at discovery. Practitioners in each discipline are creative puzzle-solvers reacting to the wonders and mysteries of life: one expressing ideas through such media as paint, dance and music etc.; the other expressing discovery of how life works through the microscope or in the laboratory.

Leonardo Da Vinci was one such artist-scientist who worked… on cadavers… to study the workings of the human body in order to paint and sculpt accurate depictions in his art.
He may be one of the earliest to see that Nature is Art perfected, that those who work in those realms work from a common root… Nature’s design already in place.

Both artist and scientist explore and investigate their fields.. They are curious about the world and its wonders. They study and transform their discipline with the new…. Artist may note the effect of light on the landscape - scientist may note how light enters the eye and registers a scene on the brain. Both may use the same subject only with a different focus.

A question thinkers may ask of this connection might be ‘how does the first impact the second?’ We understand how the improvements in paints and brushes, in sprung floors for dancers, discoveries in new materials for mutes to change sound in a musical instrument etc. satisfy the science presence. The art-to-science impact is not quite as obvious.. However in speaking with scientists, writers, and noticing my own reactions, people who experience impasse in the problem at hand agree that if they choose to use it, there is an ‘Art Fix’.

Scientist may face such a ‘block’ when preparing a formula or failing to match tissue or be experiencing other scientific questionings. That’s the moment when Art can ‘impact’ or benefit scientist. Experiencing Art forms can distract the mind to rest when one listens to music, sips an aromatic cup of tea, watches dancers , ponders a painting. The act of quiet ‘contemplation’ of beauty or of elements-in-balance is rewarded by a cleansing of the (thought) palate. The solution at the edge of the mind may then be loosed to drop into place. The brain responds. It happens time and again.

In both art and science, we witness these creative, puzzle-solving -peoples’ curiosity at mystery and wonder. We remember as well that to solve those puzzles both unlock the dilemma with the same key: contemplation. We watch as artist and scientist are motivated by the same stimulus and then ‘problem-solve’ using the same process. Through the performers of each realm we find that the arts and sciences do indeed share ‘common ground’… after all, they spring from Nature’s common root.

Miriam Kashiwa, Emerita
The Arts Guild of Old Forge, Inc.