September 19, 2013
Exhibition in Lee Road's Wine Spot closes Nov. 8
Don’t expect classical still life paintings in the current exhibition at Art Spot, but do expect fresh energy and new perspectives from the five Cleveland Institute of Art (CIA) students featured.
Titled FIVE – 2013, the showopened in early September, runs through Nov. 8, and features new artworks by 2013 graduates Lindsay Matthews and Mathew Henry Grady, senior Connor Elder ’14, and juniors Jack Sherry and Jack Subsinsky.
“It’s a good show; it’s not thematic but it’s fairly cohesive and I think the jurors had a lot to do with that,” said Assistant Professor Tommy White, who chairs CIA’s painting department. “The palette and the tactile nature of the materials are cohesive.”
White coordinates outside jurors for the quarterly CIA shows hosted by Art Spot so that he doesn’t have to pick favorites from among his own students. To jury this show, he recruited CIA graduates and adjunct faculty members Kim Bissett and Tim Callaghan, along with D.J. Hellerman, director of 1point618 Gallery in Cleveland’s Gordon Square Arts District.
From 23 entries of 10 artworks per entry, they chose Elder’s photographs, Subsinsky’s paintings, works in fiber by Grady and Sherry, and pieces that Matthews calls relics of performance art.
Grady’s “i have everything that I could ever need” stands out. A three-dimensional work in cardboard, graphite and mixed fibers, it resembles a horse-boy jumping rope with a rainbow.
Elder refers to his photographs – all taken in Hamilton, Ontario – as cinematic landscapes. White is particularly impressed with the patience Elder has in getting his lighting just right.
Art Spot is the gallery space in the front half of The Wine Spot at 2271 Lee Road. Almost two years ago, co-owners Susan and Adam Fleischer, in collaboration with White, established the space as an off-campus venue for quarterly exhibitions of student work.
“I get a kick out of working with the students. I think they bring a lot of energy to the space,” said Adam Fleischer. “We put very few limitations on what they can do and it seems like they enjoy having this place to hang their work.”
Wine Spot opened in the former Seitz-Agin Hardware store – which closed in 2011 after 56 years in Cleveland Heights – and Art Spot has been part of the wine and craft beer store from the beginning. The collaboration gives young artists expanded exposure for their work and boosts foot traffic for the owners. An added bonus: students receive 100% of the proceeds of art sales, and their work sells regularly.
For White and his faculty colleagues, the Art Spot collaboration is a valuable teaching tool. “What is the healthiest thing is students are rejected (by jurors),” he said. “They also learn how to professionally document their work and go through the habits of presentation in order to become exhibiting artists. The formats of the Art Spot shows are very similar to a typical gallery setting; so in that sense, students are getting prepared to learn how to exhibit their work.”
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