Friday, July 24, 2009

Chase Gallery is moving

Chase Gallery is moving from Newbury Street in Boston to the city’s South End gallery district along Harrison Avenue.

The gallery, which opened in 1990, plans to close at 129 Newbury St. on July 30 and reopen at 450 Harrison Ave., number 57, on Aug. 5. Owner Jeffrey Chase and Director Jane Young write:
“Traditionally the center for art galleries in Boston, Newbury Street's changing atmosphere has caused many galleries to seek new and alternative space. The South End's gentrified former warehouse district, between Washington Street and the Expressway, has quickly become a vibrant mecca for art and design.

“At our new street level space at 450 Harrison Avenue, we are delighted to join high quality, high-end galleries and design companies, along with the studios of more than 50 working artists. … More space will allow us to better showcase the many artists that we have represented for nearly twenty years and who have made the gallery a destination in the Boston art community.”

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Rhode Island State Council on the Arts announces grants

The Rhode Island State Council on the Arts yesterday announced that it has awarded $885,500 in grants to 118 applicants:
Gary Shore, Barrington, $2,500.
Coggeshall Farm Museum, Bristol, $500.
City of Central Falls, $4,000.
Cross Mills Public Library, Charleston, $500.
Leigh Medeiros, Coventry, $1,000.
Erik J. Carlson, Cranston, $2,000.
Dance Alliance of Rhode Island, East Greenwich, $500.
Scott Indermaur, East Greenwich, $2,000.
East Providence Heritage Days, $3,000.
The Providence Singers, East Providence, $12,341.
Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra and Music School, East Providence, $89,471.
Top Drawer Art Center, East Providence, $2,500.
Ann Fessler, Foster, $2,000.
Swamp Meadow Community Theatre, Foster, $1,500.
Autism Project of Rhode Island, Johnson, $6,000.
Kingston Chamber Music Festival, $2,000.
Fusionworks, Lincoln, $6,170.
Little Compton Historical Society, $500.
Common Fence Music Co., Middletown, $3,500.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Newport, $5,000.
Redwood Library and Athenaeum, Newport, $500.
Flickers, the Newport Film and Video Society, $4,000.
Friends of Ballard Park, Newport, $2,000.
William Hancock-Brainerd, Newport, $2,000.
Island Moving Company, Newport, $21,630.
Newport Art Museum & Art Association, Newport, $24,236.
Newport School Department, $1,600.
David Angell, North Kingstown, $1,500.
Kurt Van Dexter, North Kingstown, $2,000.
Julie Danho O’Connell, North Providence, $1,000.
All Children’s Theatre Ensemble, Pawtucket, $6,000.
Aurea, Pawtucket, $3,500.
Blackstone Valley Tourism Council, Pawtucket, $5,000.
Alison Bundy, Pawtucket, $1,000.
Erik Gould, Pawtucket, $4,000.
Mixed Magic Theatre and Cultural Events, Pawtucket, $4,000.
Old Slater Mill Association, Pawtucket, $15,000.
Pawtucket School Department, $4,000.
Sandra Fienstein-Gamm Theatre, Pawtucket, $34,820.
VSA Arts of Rhode Island, Pawtucket, $4,000.
Joseph O. Addy, Providence, $2,000.
Apeiron Institute for Sustainable Living, Providence, $2,000.
AS220, Providence, $46,278.
Jenine Bressner, Providence, $5,000.
CenterCity Contemporary Arts, Providence, $1,500.
Laura Colella, Providence, $5,000.
Community MusicWorks, Providence, $6,000.
CVS Highlander Charter Elementary School, Providence, $500.
Elizabeth Duffy, Providence, $1,000.
Joshua J. Enck, Providence, $1,000.
Everett Dance Theatre, Providence, $29,096.
Festival Ballet Providence, Providence, $29,273.
FirstWorks, Providence, $3,500.
Gallery Night Providence, $2,500.
Vartan Elementary School PTO Gregorian, Providence, $6,000.
Groden Center, Providence, $3,650.
Hive Archive, Providence, $1,500.
Hmong United Association of Rhode Island, Providence, $3,000.
Steven Jobe, Providence, $4,500.
Christopher Johnson, Providence, $3,000.
Hillary Jones, Providence, $2,000.
Maureen Keaveny, Providence, $5,000.
M. L. King Jr. Elementary School PTO, Providence, $750.
The Manton Avenue Project, Providence, $4,000.
Annu Palakunnathu Matthew, Providence, $1,000.
Oasis International, Providence, $3,000.
Olneyville Housing Corporation, Providence, $2,000.
Perishable Theater, Providence, $28,795.
Magaly Ponce, Providence, $4,000.
Project New Urban Arts, Providence, $4,500.
Providence Black Repertory Company, Providence, $18,511.
Providence CityArts for Youth, Providence, $3,000.
Providence Community Opportunity Corp., $5,500.
Providence Festival of New Latin American Cinema, Providence, $5,000.
Providence Foundation, Providence, $1,500.
Providence Performing Arts Center, Providence, $6,685.
Providence Preservation Society, $500.
City of Providence Department of Public Parks, $5,500.
City of Providence, $6,000.
V. Raffini, Providence, $2,500.
Raising Hope, Providence, $2,000.
Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, $87,550.
Rhode Island Black Storytellers, Providence, $6,000.
Rhode Island Civic Chorale & Orchestra, Providence, $1,500.
Rhode Island College Foundation, Providence, $5,142.
Rhode Island Film Collaborative, Providence, $3,500.
Rhode Island Public Radio, Providence, $1,500.
Kate Schapira, Providence, $2,000.
School One, Providence, $2,500.
Traer Scott, Providence, $5,000.
Sophia Academy, Providence, $500.
Michael Stewart, Providence, $5,000.
Michael Stewart, Providence, $5,000.
Michael Sanders Stoltz, Providence, $1,000.
Michael Townsend, Providence, $3,500.
Traveling Theatre, Providence, $4,000.
Trinity Repertory Company, Providence, $113,125.
Urban Collaborative, Providence, $3,000.
Woonasquatucket Valley Community Building, Providence, $2,000.
Lisa Young, Providence, $5,000.
Pippi Anne Zornoza, Providence, $2,500.
Jose Fernandes, Riverside, $5,000.
Tiverton Four Corners Center, Tiverton, $1,000.
Hera Educational Foundation, Wakefield, $3,000.
Marc Joel Levitt, Wakefield, $4,000.
South Kingstown School Department, Wakefield, $4,000.
2nd Story Theatre, Warren, $5,000.
Gateways to Change, Warwick, $2,000.
Kent County Chapter Arc, Warwick, $3,500.
Wayne G. Miller, Warwick, $1,000.
Lydia E. Perez-Nieves, Warwick, $1,000.
Puerto Rican Institute for Arts, Warwick, $1,000.
Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Warwick, $3,500.
South County Center for the Arts, West Kingston, $9,256.
Chorus of Westerly, $11,621.
Colonial Theatre School, Westerly, $7,000.
Northern Rhode Island Council of Arts, Woonsocket, $1,500.
RiverzEdge Arts Project, Woonsocket, $6,000.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Jill Colinan and Kendra Plumley

My review of “Trash Island: New work by Jill Colinan and Kendra Plumley” at AS220’s Project Space in Providence is here (at the end).

“Trash Island: New work by Jill Colinan and Kendra Plumley,” AS220 Project Space, 93 Mathewson St., Providence, July 8 to 27, 2009.

Pictured from top to bottom: Jill Colinan, installation shot featuring from left to right “Melissa,” “Brownie,” “Cat Suit,” “Stripes Morrison,” and “Rusty Nail”; “Mr. Green,” mixed media; “Rusty Nail,” mixed media; Kendra Plumley, "Death Forming" watercolor, gouache, & liquid acrylic; “Death Dozen,” mixed media; and “Biting the Hand,” watercolor, pencil, gouache, gold leaf.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Art of the Mohawk Trail

Travel out west along Route 2 in Massachusetts and you’ll find a strange and wonderful collection of Native American-themed roadside sculptures and paintings.

The route is officially designated as a “scenic highway,” known as the Mohawk Trail. It grew out of what was once a footpath used by the Pocumtuck of what is now Massachusetts and the Mohawk of what is now New York. Later English settlers used the route to get between Boston and Deerfield and Dutch settlements in New York. Benedict Arnold traveled it on his way to capture British Fort Ticonderoga in New York in 1775 and seize the canons used to drive the British out of Boston.

That’s the history that this roadside art taps into. Sort of. It’s that “sort of” that makes this art most interesting, because that gray area between fact and fiction aptly reflects how European-Americans tell and confuse and warp the story of their (our) long, fraught relationship with Native Americans.

Pictured from top to bottom are the Big Indian Shop in Charlemont, Indian Plaza in Charlemont, Mohawk Trading Post in Shelburne, Big Indian Shop again, and the “Hail to the Sunrise” monument in Charlemont.

A plaque proclaims that the “Hail to the Sunrise” monument was erected “in memory of the Mohawk Indian. The Mohawks of the Five Nations began to settle in New York state in 1590. And for 90 great suns they fought the New England tribes. The New York Mohawks that traveled this trail were friendly to white settlers. Erected by the tribes and councils of the Improved Order of Red Men, October 1, 1932.”

Below the statue is a rock-bordered wishing well with each stone bearing the name of a Red Men lodge. The group, a patriotic fraternal organization unaffiliated with actual Native Americans, claims its members were some of the folks who dressed up as Mohawk Indians and dump tea into Boston Harbor in 1773, you know, the Boston Tea Party.

Mohawk Trading Post aims to specialize in authentic Native American Arts and Crafts. Big Indian Shop’s inventory ranges from authentic Native American blankets to plastic and bamboo tomahawks. Indian Plaza reports hosting pow-wows on its 8 acres for more than three decades.

Photos by The New England Journal of Aesthetic Research, except for the shot of “Hail to the Sunrise,” which is from Wikipedia by ToddC4176 and is reproduced here under a Creative Commons license.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Anne Siems

From my review of Ann Siems’s exhibit “Butterfly Flight and Other Stories” at Walker Contemporary in Boston:
Anne Siems's paintings are time machines teleporting you back to the early days of our American republic. In her show at Walker Contemporary, the German-born, Seattle-based artist channels the endearing awkwardness of artists like John Brewster Jr., who roamed New England at the start of the 19th century painting portraits. She mixes in early American stenciled wall decorations and designs that young girls embroidered into samplers. She sets it all atop dreamy soft-focus landscapes rendered with a golden brown patina that makes the paintings look antique. The combination transforms these influences from just a pastiche into something that feels fresh and sweeps you up like ravishing moments from a Brontë sisters novel.
Read the rest here.

Ann Siems, “Butterfly Flight and Other Stories,” Walker Contemporary, 450 Harrison Ave., Boston, July 1 to 31, 2009.

Pictured from top to bottom: Annne Siems, “Conversation,” “Faces” and “Butterfly Flight.”