Friday, February 24, 2012

Culture Zoo Exhibit Showcases Emerging Artists

With so many other things happening again this weekend, I thought it would be worthwhile highlighting what is sure to be an interesting exhibit titled, "Culture Zoo: Looking In and Out of Our Cage."

The focus of this exhibition is to showcase emerging artists, reflect culture, and display art’s ability to quote the past, comment on the present, and look to the future. Artists include Vince Cody - Sculpture/Painting, Chelsea Morgan of Magic Box Photography - Photography, Christopher Selleck - Photography, Adam McCauley - Painter, Michael Smith - Painter, Jeredt Runions - Painter. Colin Wiita - Mixed Media.

Native American sculpture and painting, portrait and urban landscape photography, abstract paintings and mixed medium on canvas. Their work will fill the North End Arts Gallery at 1323 Broadway Street from tonight through April 21 which coincides with the Art for Earth Day Gallery Hop.

The North End Arts Gallery is upstairs in the same building that houses the Red Mug, a bakery, a chiropractic clinic and an assortment of artists associated with Art In The Alley. I remember touring this historic building that had once housed the Superior Police (Disclaimer: I am not from here originally and my have facts wrong on that one.) It had just been turned over to the arts in the early 1990's and publisher Mike Savage of Savage Press invited me to a book signing and reception in this very room where the gallery now resides. There were no other businesses here yet and it was interesting going in and out of various corridors, exploring spaces upstairs and down. I imagined being a little kid playing hide and seek, or a spookier game that my brothers and I used to play when my parents went out.

Earlier this week I contacted Jeredt Runions and asked if he had time to answer a few questions about tonight's event so I could share it here. As always, he graciously helped with the following information.

E: Who are the artists showing and can you describe some of their work?
JR: The 7 artists involved are Vince Cody, Adam McCauley, Chelsea Morgan, Jeredt Runions, Christopher Selleck, Michael Smith, and Colin Wiita. As for the artists’ work this is a show that the only two artists i know are Colin and Adam and their work is a combination of abstract, mixed media. Both artists are products of UWS Art dept so they have a very similar style that can be found in this school. The others, I have no clue what they do or who they are which makes it fun.

E: What is your current work about? New directions? What have you been wrestling with pre-eminently?
JR: My current work explores more of a world traveling theme. I traveled to Chile recently and the colors, along with the grafitti, changed my eyes for different colors and mood of colors. I have been going to UWS recently and exploring different media and ways to produce art along with styles to blend into my already distinct style. I have been making wood block prints, etching, and drawing a lot so those elements combined with collage have expanded my art outlook and has been building me into a overall better artist.

E: I see something going on in the Superior art scene that I haven’t witnessed before. What's your take on this?
JR: It has been really fun in the past couple years to see the building up of the art scene in the Twin Ports. I have lived here for a long time and have been showing my art around the area and have never seen the exciting energy that is going on here right now. More importantly, the art scene in Superior is growing at such an awesome rate that I feel that it could be the one thing that helps build this community up a little better and show the people of the area that Superior can be a great art town like Duluth!

E: I'll be there at six tonight and have been looking forward to it. Thanks, Jeredt, for all your efforts to help make art happen here in the Twin Ports.

There are still so many other things happening one has a hard time finding the time to take it all in. I can't let the moment pass without mentioning that Saturday evening Garrison Keillor is coming to town from Lake Woebegone for another edition of Prairie Home Companion. It may be too late for tickets, but if you tune in you may hear some of us Northlanders clapping, laughing and carrying on in the background. We're not all staid Scandihoovians.

Meantime, life goes on all around you. Enjoy your weekend.

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