POSTED ON JANUARY 4, 2012:
The dark days breed warm reveries for the imagination
In that warm fuzzy space, where purity is truth...don't forget it's total combat," said Michael Sexton, creator of Autumn Group, one of the new exhibits that opens with a reception at Living ArtSpace Jan. 6, 6-9pm. Described as "An Exhibition of Assemblage Sculpture," it is presented with Marty Coleman's Velveteen Woman.
"I interpret assemblage as an equation. I approach it sculpturally, with painterly qualities as well as collage qualities. The selection of materials is insignificant and loosely based on form. It's obvious there are different objects and materials used in a completed sculpture, but each are insignificant as individuals. Only as an assembled, finished piece is it significant. Completion is a balanced equation. I make art as a form of communication -- sometimes beauty and sometimes ugliness, but ultimately truth and honesty," said Sexton of his own work. Sexton's work will be featured in the South Gallery.
Sweet and Soft.
"An exhibition of photo-collages" is the catch phrase of Velveteen Woman, but the story behind it is far more intriguing.
"One of the main results was that I focused much of my artwork on what happens to a person's body and soul that makes them unique and individual, not what makes them similar to someone else. This exhibition is a continuation of my ongoing fascination and love of finding that in people.
"The thematic idea for Velveteen Women is based on the children's book, 'The Velveteen Rabbit.' In the story Velveteen Rabbit believes that all the things that happened to her over the course of her life -- the scars, the worn down fur, the missing parts -- make her unlovable and useless. So it seems to be with many women I know as they age.
However, as the story's events unfold the rabbit learns that those very things she thinks ruin her actually make her real. They are what make her truly alive and more loveable that she ever could have been before she grew into her older self.
"These images are my creative way of finding the beauty and power in 'flaws'; things that women often want to fix or hide away. Seeing, imagining and creating them so that they become something beautiful is my intent.
"I asked friends (and some virtual strangers) to pose for me. I explained to them that I would not be looking for the surface prettiness, but the 'flaws'. I can't say enough about the courage my friends had to allow me this intimate access. Some were afraid or nervous, but they trusted me. I hope the power and beauty within the images find that trust to be worth it.
"The Velveteen Woman is one who has lived and loved and has the proof on her surface and in her heart," said Marty Coleman in his artist statement about the work, which will be exhibited in the North Gallery.
Both exhibits can be experienced through Jan. 26 at Living ArtSpace, located at 307 E. Brady St.
Also opening Jan. 6 is Cages: Recent Works by Yiren Gallagher at the Tulsa Artists Coalition, located at 9 E. Brady.
Yiren, a native of Taiwan, is a visual and installation artist. Her inspirations include memories, places, death, and motherhood. She has lived and worked in Tulsa since 1994 and holds her MFA from Pratt Institute.
The Tulsa Artists' Coalition (TAC) is a volunteer-run, nonprofit organization of artists and art supporters, formed to encourage and support emerging and established contemporary artists, and to foster the development of new forms and multidisciplinary work in Tulsa and surrounding communities. Cages runs through Jan. 25.
From the Indian Nation to Cars
Sheriff's in Town.
Many may recognize Michael Wallis as the voice of the Sheriff in the animated feature film Cars, and Cars 2, however he is also an Oklahoma history buff. Spend a lively morning with "Tulsa's favorite storyteller" on Jan. 6 at Way Down Yonder in the Indian Nation as the first installment of the Tulsa Town Hall special event package at the Tulsa Performing Arts Center Chapman Music Hall at 10:30am. As an inductee to the Writers Hall of Fame of America, one can expect a morning jam-packed with an entertaining and fascinating take on the American West.
Future speakers include Barry Asmus presenting America's Economic Future on Feb. 24, Alison Levine presenting Oxygen Not Included on March 30 and John Edward Hasse presenting Ragtime, Blues and Jazz on May 4.
The Chapman Music hall will host a different kind of experience on Jan. 7 as the Tulsa Symphony presents its third concert of the season Musical Migration at 7:30pm. Andrew Grams is the guest conductor and the concert will feature Respighi's Gli Uccelli (The Birds), which is said to be inspired by ancient dance and song. Also presented will be Beethoven's Piano Concerto No.2 and Schumann's Rhineland-inspired Symphony No. 3. Beethoven himself performed the premier of Concerto No. 2 in 1795.
Youth Services Exhibit
At the Tulsa Performing Arts Center Gallery Jan. 5-29 is the Youth Services Art Studio installation. Youth Services of Tulsa (YST) promotes its Art Studio program, one of the 18 programs the organization offers, to area youth. The exhibition is to promote YST's annual event, Blank Canvas, at the Tulsa Convention Center, Feb. 16 at 6:30pm.
The other programs offered at YST range from edible artwork, screen printing, drawing tulsa landmarks, pottery, glassblowing, to paper&print and many others. Classes are for teens ages 12-18 and all skill levels are welcome.
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