Tuesday, October 24, 2006

"Shelter" opened on Friday night

“Shelter” opened on Friday night before the ballet. This was the show hosted by “Open Eyes”, a group of artist/activists who annually highlight the struggles women facing overwhelming odds. Past events have honored Women in Black and Mukhataran Bibi. The core group invited several artists to display work alongside theirs art. I was one of these “invited” artists and have two pieces in the show: Sampler and my altered book, American Dream.

The show was especially well publicized and images of my book were even used in The State newspaper and in the on-line version of CarolinaArts. Televison coverage happened earlier in the day for broadcast that evening.The exhibit was very well attended. Some of the women living in the Women’s Shelter even came and a few pieces of art sold.

Steve and I were almost over dressed, ready to skip out to the ballet. We tried, in vain, to see the show but were caught in too many conversations to really enjoy any of the artwork. Alex was dressed in his best, chic jacket and tight pants and didn’t manage to escape idle chit-chat either.

The exhibit features two large “structure-like” pieces made of recycled materials. Judy Hubbard made one with help from an architect friend. It is entirely made of used, plastic water bottles. Most people are just raving about it, but I think this is mainly due to Judy’s well-know personality. In truth, I was not too impressed with either “building”.

Ellen Emerson Yaghjian created an audio recording of interviews she conducted with several ladies at the Shelter. I think she called the work Voices of Mary. I found this much more thought provoking and meaningful. Much of the artwork was truly inspired. Several pieces, however, were just “put” in the show. They were not works created in response to the theme; they merely “fit in” and were by “big-name” local artists. No one seemed to care. In fact, the reception was so full that viewing it was difficult.Still, awareness was raised and this was the focus. My work was displayed quite nicely. We left early for the ballet.

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