Monday, March 31, 2014

Documentary and Digestive biscuits

Having Julie Casper Roth come to show us her work and talk to us about the fine line that documentary work always walks between reality, truth, and fiction was really interesting.  As an artist Julie describes herself as a story teller who is always interested in how she can play with combining her love of history to create speculative fictions of the past or the future.
We rearranged the chairs and use a drawing pad as movie screen for this evening’s presentation. And what a lively conversation, in spite of being in the main part of the library (we were only reminded to lower our voices once!)  Several really interesting films were mentioned that folks may want to try to see including:  CatfishJohnny got his gun, (both can be requested by inter-library loan through Chatham Public library,) and Exit thru the gift shop, (available to stream on Netflix or to rent at video visions.)  
For our next meeting on Monday, April 14 we will try to catch our breathe and take some time to “digest” all that we have read, seen, thought about and talked about.  Using the term “meta” may be appropriate here (see the definition of this below*,) as we begin to talk about what we have been talking about and how effective/interesting this form of talking has been.  It is also time to talk about what we will do next ( I have a few ideas!)  I have included just one link for this week so as not to feel too full! And this is where the digestive biscuits will come into play.  Of course we will try them with and without chocolate, milk and bittersweet!  We will be back on our regular day, regular time, regular location - hope to see you there!  (Monday April 14, 6:30-7:45, in the teen room.) 

If you would like a little more reading material to hold you over until our next meeting please stop by the Bagel Cafe at 41 Main Street.  While having a bite enjoy reading a chapter or two of one of my art books I have temporarily loaned (and covered with fabulous fabric covers) located above the drinks cooler just waiting for you to open them up!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Guess who's coming to Chatham?

Meet Julie at the library 3/26/14  6:30pm
Artist/Filmmaker/Writer Julie Casper Roth - an award-winning filmmaker and video artist whose work has been presented at many venues such as the MadCat International Women’s Film Festival, Athens International Film and Video Festival, Chicago Reeling Lesbian and Gay International Film Festival, Dumbo Art Under the Bridge Festival, the Southwest Gay and Lesbian Film Festival and Anthology Film Archives. Her work has also been screened in gallery settings including Artists’ Television Access in San Francisco and the SCOPE Art Fair held at Lincoln Center and in Basel, Switzerland. Her work has also been shown in conjunction with "Technocracy" - the SPEMA conference held at Carnegie Mellon University.  She is a 2008 New York Foundation for the Arts Fellow in Video as well as one of five national recipients of the 2012 College Art Association's Professional Development Fellowship.  

Julie and I became friends while we were in grad school together at the University of Albany
and she will be coming right here, to our Chatham Public Library on Wednesday* March 26th at 6:30pm - upstairs by the fireplace.  Come one, come all, and enjoy this free event where Julie will show us some of her work and have a conversation with us about the fine line between fact and fiction.  Take a look at the links on right that Julie provided to get ready!

*This is a special night for our ongoing reading and discussion group which usually meets on the second and fourth Monday at the library.  We will go back to our regular schedule in April, meeting on the 14th at 6:30pm.

One field trip, two artists...

We had a very engaging and fascinating time on our first field trip to Main Street, Chatham where we visited two local galleries.  At Thompson Giroux Gallery Kate Hamilton met with us and talked about her process to make her four times life size garments out of ripstop nylon.  Kate also talked about how clothing is a metaphor for shelter. Because of this it seemed only fitting that we enter into one of her works for a photo.  Kate was very gracious about allowing us to touch the work, an added treat in my book.  

This show, “Big Shoes to Fill” has now ended but you can learn more about Kate Hamilton’s work from her website.  I also want to thank Marie-Claude Giroux of the Thompson Giroux Gallery for helping make this wonderful evening happen.  

Next we went down the street to the Joyce Goldstein Gallery to delight in Kelly Bruneau’s captivating and joyful drawings on paper...and the walls!  Her drawings are expressive and often capture a particular moment in time of excitement, frenzied activity, or embarrassment that comes to life.  The show title, “Side Kicks and Friends” really sums up what these drawings mean to Kelly.  For more info about Kelly’s work please stop by the Grainery at 15 Main street and speak to Cathi Bruneau, Kelly’s mom. 

I would also like to thank Joyce Goldstein for allowing me to use the gallery during the winter months when the gallery is usually closed.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Threads of an Art Conversation...

Click the green flag to start and the red stop sign to stop.When all those "conversation" squiggly threads appear and start jiggling press keys a,b,c,d,e,f to see what happens next! (Be Patient, this animation takes a moment to load.)

Ok, so much I would like to share with you all, and so little time or perhaps too many threads to follow.  That is a good segue to talk about our Feb. 24 meeting at the library.  We had a very interesting conversation on the two artists (Sara Sze and Gregory Crewdson) we had looked at.  Several key points floated up to the surface in the conversation that I hope will stay with us as we continue.  Rather than use language here to describe these ideas, I used a simple, kid-intended, programming language called Scratch to make a little animation. This program was developed by MIT and is quite user friendly (particularly if you are a child, so the learning curve was a little steeper for me.) One of the key features that really drew me to using this form is it was a way to connect our little community with another, though virtual one.  This application is completely free. You can see how others made their works, borrow ideas and ask or answer questions.  This open source system contains a lot of ideas of what a community can be.  Follow this link to see the Scratch website and an alternate version of my animation that includes sound (I recommend head phones if you are viewing this in the library!) 

For our next meeting on March 10, we will look at a couple of artists that will in some way prepare us for our first field trip on Friday March 14th.  We will be visiting the Thompson Giroux Gallery at 57 Main Street and then Joyce Goldstein Gallery at 16 Main Street.  We will start at the Thompson Giroux Gallery at 5:30 where we will see  Kate Hamilton’s Big Shoes to Fill, a show where quotidian forms of clothing are transformed by scale and become a stand in for one’s identity.  Then on to Joyce Goldstein Gallery to see Kelly Bruneau’s Side Kicks and Friends, colorful, exuberant, drawings on paper and the walls.  Check on the right in the “what we are reading” box for links to all of the readings.  I can’t help but also include a few other links that include artists from the last meeting, or are just too wonderful to not share.  Enjoy!