Updated: Jul 12, 2021
We have completed our first week of ART YARD Summer Session 2021 on zoom. Teaching Artist Reg Lewis has led participating artists on amazing artistic, emotional and intellectual journey as we embark on the ART YARD Year to Heal and Repair. The art work created thus far has been eclectic, thoughtful and moving. The dialogue during the session and daily critiques has been profound and quite inspirational.
Reg summarizes: “Today, Day 4 of ART YARD Summer Session 2021, the participants continued to develop artworks that reflect the theme of healing and restoration. The session centered on learning a mindfulness approach to the art making process as participants incorporated a mind quieting observation strategy to create “focused” still life portraits. The task inspired many relaxed still life portraits and representations which also had meditative qualities.
Shhh works (mostly still in progress) by Karla, Jacob, August, Eden, Marilyn, Thea, Sigrid, Sarah, Robin, Reg, Zeke and Meridith:
This calming mood of art making came in sharp contrast to the previous three classes which focused on students creating artworks that required intense personal reflection. Day 1 and Day 2 required participants to tap into the mental and emotional extremities they have experienced in their lives (especially in light of the last year and a half of the pandemic). They were not easy or simple tasks.
The Day 1 objective required the participants to locate and identify the places of darkness, depression or difficulty that they have known. Before beginning, the art of Francis Bacon was examined to exemplify an artist whose body of work drew heavily from those places of darkness and torment.
The Day 2 objective leaned to the opposite direction of the first day by asking the participants to represent places where restoration, healing (and/or happiness) resides. Many students reflected on how difficult it was for them to readily locate that place which served as an indication of the complexities we have faced from 2020 until now. Either way, the participants dug deep to reveal those places. The art of Peter Doig served as the inspiration from which the participants could draw.
The Day 3 objective asked the participants to combine the work of the first two sessions to reflect how those opposites coexist in their current lives. The art of Mark Bradford was shared as a focal point for this day’s objective. Ultimately, the results from all three days were extraordinary as they featured deep, personal reflections and representations.
That should explain why today’s calming, meditative class stood in such contrast with the work of the previous three intense days. Next week’s classes will continue to build upon the direction of the work which ultimately is created for us to increase our sensitivity to the world around us and ourselves as we seek to express the complexities we find in both and beyond.
These varied classes all are a part of the process which allows us to incorporate healing and restoration practices into our observations of the world as artists.”
In other art news:
Congratulations to ART YARD Artist Ardelia Lovelace who just completed a private mural commission in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn.
Ardelia Lovelace, mural start to finish:
Please join ART YARD Artists Marie Roberts, Candy Heiland, Maraya Lopez, and me on Saturday July 10th 1-6pm for the Grand Opening of The Art of Coney Island at Brooklyn Waterfront Artists Coalition, 481 Van Brunt Street, Red Hook, Brooklyn.
Hope to see you at BWAC in Red Hook for the opening of The Art of Coney Island!