Five women with distinctly different artistic styles will bring gallery exhibits back to the Box Factory for the Arts, 1101 Broad St., St. Joseph on Friday, October 23, 2020. These exhibits are the first in-house gallery shows since the pandemic forced closure of the Box Factory’s doors in early March.
The exhibits will be open for public viewing from noon to 4 pm on Fridays-Sundays through November 29 as well as on the Box Factory for the Arts Website.
An opening reception, featuring conversations with the artists, will be streamed live on the Box Factory for the Arts Facebook Page at 6 pm on Friday, October 23. If you cannot attend there will be a recording of the stream uploaded to the Facebook Page.
Those exhibiting work in the Heartha Whitlow Gallery and the main floor stage area will be: Michele Corazzo of Valparaiso, IN with a sculpture exhibit titled “Head Menhirs”; Carly Norris, Niles, MI, mixed media art titled “From the Ashes”; Nicole Brown, St. Joseph, “Heavy Like Floating”; Maggie Bandstra, Grand Haven, MI, “Nature Abstracted”; and Vicki VanAmeyden, Augusta, MI, “Objections: Democracy Under Pressure 2015—.”
“The Menhir series depicts my long personal relationship with trees. These abstracted tree trunks illustrate my uneasiness with current destructive human interactions with nature by using texture of mass-produced objects for the bark. As time has passed, I saw these trunks becoming torso-like and began to add heads to remind us that we are one with the natural world.”
Carly strives to involve her audience in her discoveries and the treasures she finds. She is drawn to the reaction of ink, paint, encaustics, oil and more on every possible surface.
“This work is influenced by the many strong women in my life that I look to for inspiration and courage in my paintings. It is their presence and faces that grace much of my work, as does derivatives of myself. They help me tell the stories of the figures in the images I hear, and the poetry I have felt in my life.”
The human connection to nature inspires her paintings and pottery. She extrapolates the simple forms and colors that she finds in plant life and the landscape. She is using an exaggerated scale, movement, and patterns to deliver a healing message through her work. She is encouraging us to take notice of the beauty in the world around us.
The spirit of OBJECTIONS resonates with a quote from American author and editor, Professor Toni Morrison:“…All good art is political! There is none that isn’t. And the ones that try hard not to be political are political by saying, ‘We love the status quo.’ …it (art) has to be both: beautiful and political at the same time. I’m not interested in art that is not in the world. And it’s not just the narrative, it’s not just the story; it’s the language and the structure and what’s going on behind it…”