Thursday, January 20, 2011

America’s Got Talent, Right Here In Duluth

The Duluth Art Institute Member Show opened last night to a packed house in the Great Hall of the Depot, downtown Duluth. Paintings, sculpture and photography by more than 100 artists are on display through mid-March. If attendance at last night's opening is any indication, the local art scene is most definitely still alive and well.

The member art show is a fixture of the Duluth Art Institute calendar year. If nothing else, it's a good reason for local artists to keep renewing their annual memberships, the DAI also offers a whole range of classes, workshops and other activities to help artists of all stripes, from beginning and emerging to pro.

In conjunction with the Member Show there was also a wonderful exhibition of the biennial juried show with a lot of exception work in the John Steffl Gallery. And if you still haven't had your fill, Sean Elmquist's unusual constructions filled the George Morrison Gallery.

Local artists can thank Samantha Gibb Roff for vital energy and visibility she has brought to the DAI these past nine or so years since being installed as Executive Director. With a small staff she's accomplished some big things, not the least of which is ensuring that funding remains strong for the local arts community and its many programs, not only for artists but for Duluth itself.

My own contribution to the show (yes, I am a member) was a piece called Picasso's Last Thought. There's a lot to see and if you're at all in the neighborhood, this is a show you'll want to check out.

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