October First Friday

I covered 2nd and 3rd Streets East of Market for First Friday. Here is an overview of 4 of the exhibits that I found interesting:

“Remote” – Joe Bird Park


Before you even enter any of the galleries look in Joe Bird Park (on 3rd St. next to Arch) for “Remote,”an installation by Chris Vecchio. The exhibit, which encourages interaction between man and technology, is set up to be powered by your very own remote control (yes, I mean the “clicker” to your television set back home). For more information go to the Remote website, which has a video, more pictures, and very simple instructions for how to activate the installation. Click and you experience different sounds and light combinations. Best seen at night.

“FaceGut” – Honeymilk

Hsu with one of his paper models.

First stop was at “Facegut” in Honeymilk (37 N. 3rd St). “FaceGut” features drawings that are the collaborative effort of artists A. J. Purdy and Jason Hsu. I had the pleasure of speaking with Hsu and learned that most of the work for “FaceGut” was completed in a long weekend, when Purdy briefly returned to Philadelphia from Italy (he is there now). Many of the drawings were “ripped out of sketchbooks” and are in ink, though there are several in graphite and ballpoint pen – often the handiest medium around. I especially loved the paper models. See more photos on my flickr site here.

“Wall P” – which became the wallpaper for the exhibit – has edges that align exactly to each other (perfect for tiling).

The name “FaceGut” is also a collaboration – of Purdy’s “totemic” style (Face) and Hsu’s “intestinal” style (Gut). The drawings were made “in the moment,” and felt organic and spontaneous. They had a liveliness to them that was only heightened by the screenprinted, pink and yellow wallpaper, which the artist’s made specially for the exhibit.

“Lounge & Seizure Room” – Carbon 14


The “Lounge & Seizure Room” is a multimedia installation by Bergen & McMaster that is what it claims to be: a lounge that might give you seizures. Think very loud music and a huge screen that flashes bright lights and images. I don’t have much to say about this exhibit, besides that it has been open since September 1st, and is at Carbon14 (26 N. 3rd St). Beware if you’re epileptic or pregnant – there is a specific warning advising you not to enter the room.

“It with Flowers” – Fig Jar Books


I’ve never been into Fig Jar Books (55 N. 2nd St.) and I thought it was a lovely venue for art (I love books). That said, the show is advertised as “an exhibition of storytellers.” Presented by 215 Fest and Damian Weinkrantz, “It With Flowers,” is the second exhibit this month whose title is part of a common saying, the other being “With the Bathwater” at Projects Gallery. “With the Bathwater” is a solo show by Caleb Weintraub. You can read more about it in Libby’s post, “Caleb Weintraub: Putti power in a troubled world,” and Roberta’s Weekly Update, “Heat in the Galleries.”

“Poop on My Back” – Andrew Jeffrey Wright

When I asked him for further information about how the works were linked, Weinkrantz informed me that each is a selection from a much larger narrative collection. Although I found it frustrating that only pieces of a story were displayed, there were some good ones. But some were really bizarre, in a funny way, like Andrew Jeffrey Wright‘s silkscreen of a ghost (above). See more images on my flickr site.

I also visited the Knapp Gallery, a brand new gallery that exhibits all student art, but I have much more to say about it so I’ll save it for a later post – expect it in the next few days. Similarly, FreeJade has a great exhibit that will be up and growing, and I will check back in there either later this month or next First Friday. In the meantime, you can see pictures from both exhibits on my flickr site here: Knapp and FreeJade.

-Caitlin, Artblog’s intern, loves First Friday.