Artist Market at Rhiner Festival

Calling all local artists;

I would like to invite you to participate in the first annual West End Waterfront Festival, aka ‘The Rhiner Festival’ to take place in the West End Waterfront District on September 19th, 2009 from 11am to 8pm.

The Festival is intended to be a celebration of the rich and fascinating history of the area once referred to as ‘the Rhine,’ ‘the Flats,’ or even ‘Sodom.’ In a nutshell, visitors who attend the festival will learn about the diverse groups of immigrant populations who once inhabited the City’s West End Waterfront District, the ‘bad old days’ of fun and excitement in the time of the Erie Canal and later, and the successive waves of teamsters, gamblers, cockfights, bootleggers, students and the reformers who tried to keep at least a small lid on things or salvage the damage. The festival will include music, arts and crafts, food, performances, and will all center around a mystery game which will unfold at various sites throughout the day, where we invite visitors to try and solve the mystery, which involves a stolen cargo of ‘treasure’ which was being transported by water to the east. Throughout the day, actors from the History Center’s living history troupe will act out scenes at various locations, inviting festival goers to solve several aspects of the mystery, including: who did it? where the thieves are hiding out, and to find the location of the hidden treasure. Passive clues will also be located at each of the participating businesses, so that that festival goers will be able to make their way from each of the participating businesses at their leisure, collecting clues, strolling along the canal, taking free boat rides, enjoying crafts and games for kids, enjoying cocktails on the lawn, musical performances, etc, etc.

We have a huge amount of space along the waterfront, and we would love to invite you to come down and set up an easel, stand or table to make and/or sell your work for the day. (I am envisioning this to appear something like Paris, along the banks of the Seine River, where you can stroll along and buy something handmade and beautiful along the way – or have your portrait painted as a souvenir, this sort of thing. Only instead of Paris, it will be an area once referred to as ‘Moonshine Island.’) If it rains, we have indoor spaces available at various locations throughout the site.

We would love to have portrait painters on hand, watercolors of the event being made and for sale, conceptual art projects – anything you can imagine. We are offering you the opportunity to participate free of charge during the day of the event. If you are interested, please get in touch – contact information below.

Wylie Schwartz, Marketing & Development Manager
The History Center in Tompkins County
401 East State Street, Suite 100
Ithaca, New York 14850
Phone: (607) 273-8284 ext. 6, Fax: (607) 273-6107 &


call for artists: MOVEMENT



An art show to benefit the Ithaca SufferJets and Ithaca’s Foodnet Meals on Wheels
Deadline for Entries: July 15th, 2009 | Theme: Movement
Show Dates: Sept. 4 – Oct. 10 | Entry Fee: $20

In conjunction with Petrune Gallery, the Ithaca SufferJets invite artists to submit
work that embodies the theme of “Movement.” All media including, but not limited to
installation, performance, video, digital, new media, painting, sculpture, and mixed media
will be considered.

The show will open in conjunction with the anniversary of the 19th amendment and
Gallery Night of Ithaca on Friday, September 4, 2009 and continue through Saturday,
October 10th. A cash prize of $200 will be awarded to the piece that places first.
Two other non-cash prizes will be awarded.

Jurors for this exhibition are William Ganis, Assistant Professor of Art History at Wells
College and Director of the College’s String Room Gallery; and Andrea Inselmann,
Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art at
Cornell University.

How to submi t artwork: Send images on a CD, attachments on e-mail, or schedule an
appointment to bring finished work in person. Each applicant is allowed to submit up to five
individual works. If your piece cannot be captured in this manner, please submit a written
proposal (less than 300 words) that describes your piece and submit details on two previous
works that you have shown in the past. Please include a list of titles, sizes, mediums, and prices
with your name, address, phone number and e-mail address.
$20 checks made payable to ‘Ithaca League of Women Rollers’

Ithaca League of Women Rollers
PO Box 301
Ithaca, NY 14851
607 279 5577
For electronic submissions,
send images configured to
150-300 dpi, attached to
e-mail with no more than
2mb per message to
Work will be considered when the
check is received.

A question for local artists

What types of classes or workshops would you find useful, if any, to inform or progress your practice or knowledge of art?

art stunts

Red Shoes, in response to your previous question:

“Ithaca artists – how can these kinds of inventive public interventions be created in town in ways that don’t mar, destroy, etc?”

Did anyone happen to notice this local art stunt that took place a few months back on the storefront located outside of the Cayuga Street Parking Garage?

art happens

For anyone who has ever said that Ithaca needs a more vibrant, dynamic contemporary art scene – suddenly it appears we have one.

As far as I see it, the only thing that is going to make what is shaping up to be a tantalizing lineup of art happenings even better – all things considered – is if we all turn up to support the scene. Here are my recommendations for the week – hope to see you there!

Kicking it all off is an artist sometimes-known-as Bravo, Cornell MFA candidate Jess Evett-Miller, who will present her installation, in perpetuity, in the Tjaden Experimental Studio, at Tjaden Hall, Cornell University, from Monday, Dec 1, 2008 at 8am to Friday, Dec 5, 2008 at 5pm
An opening reception will take place on Thursday, December 4th, from 5-7pm.

On Wednesday, Dec. 3rd, Brick Balloon in Collegetown, a project of Cornell MFA candidate Anthony Graves, is hosting its first exhibition, presenting works by Graham Parker, Ryan Harden Brown, Carla Herrera-Prats, and Mark Orange. An opening reception will be held Wednesday, December 3rd from 6pm–9pm
Exhibition runs: Dec. 1–31
Hours: T–Th 12–5pm or by appointment
Brick Balloon Space
108–110 Collegetown Ct. @ Dryden Rd.

Also of interest, The Working Relationship collective are presenting: “Temp Space: Four-Day Social Club,” a contemporary art community event at the former Battery Warehouse on 423 Franklin St. An event of art, interventions and disruptions that will continue throughout the weekend to offer unique encounters with art and artists. Special events and unexpected happenings will be taking place during open hours: Thursday, Dec. 4, 5-9pm; Friday, Dec. 5, 12-9pm; Saturday, Dec. 6,12-9pm; and Sunday, Dec. 7, 12-5pm.

And don’t forget that this Friday, Dec. 5th, 5-8pm, it is Gallery Night in Downtown Ithaca. For a complete listing of all of the participating galleries, contact the Ithaca Downtown Partnership or the Community Arts Partnership. Sorry this is the best I can do, they don’t seem to have a website – please correct me if I’m mistaken.

Highlights for me include the State of the Art Gallery’s Invitational Exhibition – which word on the street has led me to believe will be chock full of interesting and exciting surprises – as well as the CSMA Annual Open Show at the Community School of Music and Arts, and the Ink Shop’s new exhibit, Fine Edge: 9 Intaglio Artists, looks like one not to be missed.

On Friday, after you’ve finished perusing the downtown galleries, make sure to head over to Sfumato Studio between 8:00pm – 11:00pm for an evening of contemporary video art including a diverse cross section of nine regional artists working in video/new media. It promises to be an interesting and entertaining evening for all.”
The after gallery night screening
Friday December the 5th from 8 until 11pm
201 Dey St. Loft 202 (Hickey’s Music Building)
Ithaca, NY

Am I missing anything?
Hope to see everyone out and about for these events. What a town.

art salon #2

Thank you Working Relationship for inviting me to your art salon last weekend, and for inviting me to share my impressions. I hope this might contribute to the manifestation of a possible dialogue regarding the nature of art, the gallery, the non gallery, or anything in between.

Last weekend’s art salon was the second of its kind brought to us by the newly formed collective of artists, art historians and art-lovers, who are, according to their mission statement, ‘assembling platforms for the continuum of contemporary art practice and its audiences.’ I was invited as a guest, and had no involvement in the event’s creation, design or implementation. Taking place at a private residence in Lansing which had been temporarily transformed into a gallery for the singular night of the event, the salon featured works by 8 local and non local artists, working in painting, sculpture, photography, video, book art, and new media art represented. At the end of the evening, which included food (in this case tapas) a desert course was served, where each of the 20 or so guests were invited to assemble and reflect upon the evening, at which point 2 of the participating artists joined us for a question and answer discussion session.

As a format for exhibiting work, I found this experience to be interesting and intriguing, particularly in light of a previous thread on this site which sought to question the notion of the ‘coffee house as gallery’ in cases where there is little alternative for exhibiting work of an experimental nature around town. For this I give kudos to the group, who have managed to find an interesting way to surpass the glaring lack of gallery options and to offer a solution as has been the trend in larger cities where the walls of private homes prove quite suitable for displaying art. While there were some aspects I found difficult – the artists coming at the end, for example, rather than being present for the entire evening, which I thought would have helped the dialogue between guests who aren’t sure how to go about encountering or understanding contemporary art – a point which also could be seen as possibly creating an unnecessary separation between artist and non artist which might have been viewed as alienating for both parties – but, that’s just one critic’s opinion, and it bears mentioning that for this critic anyway, it is the elimination of separation and the achievement of unity all around – both in art, and in life – that is key. As a final critical observation, I found myself continually wondering what the evening might have been like with more people, and without so much structure in terms of the overall format. Good art should be enough to stand on its own, and if it’s good, a dialogue will emerge naturally between the work and the viewer. In this regard, the more the merrier. I’d love to see a similar exhibit mounted in a home and opened up to the public, and to see how the evening would take shape naturally.

Having said that, I eagerly look forward to seeing what other events of this nature the organization comes up with, and it seems that plans are well underway, with the forthcoming temporary exhibition the Working Relationship is mounting at the Franklin Market plaza.

ps. It was an extra special touch that each of the salon guests were given a work of art to take home – in this case a multiple created by Heather O’Hara, an artist working out of Baltimore. (pictured here.)

Our little site seems to be filling up with images of guns incidentally – what can it mean about the state of contemporary art?

Shooting Pictures

In response to a previous entry, here is a recent work by John Criscitello.


I view this piece as evidence of a new development taking place within Criscitello’s poignantly post-pop mode of articulation, and I look forward to seeing how this will continue to play out in his work. It reminds me of similar pursuits undertaken by artists of the 1960s and 70s, such as Niki De Saint Phalle’s Shooting Picture (1961) or the more disturbing expressions offered by the Beider Meinhof gang – a group of German ‘art terrorists’ from the 1970s- and the way artists, often during times of prolonged war, deploy such art-stunt strategies to an express an idea.


In case further explanation is required: Also by Niki de Saint Phalle:


As this work highlights, in this type of scenario, no one gets hurt. A war without victims. The painting, having been destroyed, can be resurrected and reborn at the will of its creator.

It’s too bad the current administration couldn’t have gotten their heads around this idea, even for a tiny little minute.

Having said that, there is no question Obama’s administration will bring change for the arts in this country. Surely the proof is in the color! I can’t recall having seen politicians sport such a variety of color before as Barack and Michelle’s indigos, cobalts and ultramarines (unless you count the ermine-fur trimmed ski suits worn by Vladimir Putin -but that would seem to be indicative of a different sensibility.) As for the Obamas, this can only be interpreted as a sign of ‘deep and sensitive feeling.’ What is this if not art?