News – Nichols Berg, Cambridge Street Studios, Divine Lorraine, Data Garden, opportunities and more!


Gallery classes – Beginning this spring and continuing through the summer, Nichols Berg Gallery  will host workshops in the gallery taught by Clarissa Shanahan (teaming up with Scott Nichols of Nichols Berg) on subjects including encaustics, manuscript illuminations and printmaking. And Cambridge Street Studios, a new realist atelier in Philly, is having their Grand Opening Gala this coming Saturday, March 31st.  The studio/school also has classes.  Check their website.

Gallery owners Scott Nichols and Steve Berg.

Boundary-defying record label and journal Data Garden is running a plant-based audio exhibition at the Philadelphia Museum of Art April 13-15. Four large tropical plants outfitted with specialized electronic sensors to process their physiological data will produce and control quadrophonic audio compositions in real time. If this sounds too bizarre to believe, don’t hesitate to check out the exhibition – this performance is reliant on the presence of museum goers, whose movements will result in new compositions from moment to moment. Data Garden was invited to create this installation by Megawords Magazine, which is running a library and exhibition space in conjunction with the exhibit Zoe Strauss: Ten Years.

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Rain, 1889 Vincent Willem van Gogh, Dutch Oil on canvas 28 7/8 x 36 3/8 inches (73.3 x 92.4 cm). Special Exhibition Galleries, first floor (Dorrance Galleries). 

In other PMA news, the exhibition Van Gogh Up Close has booked over 170,000 tickets nearly eight weeks into its fourteen-week run, and has seen visitors from 44 countries and 48 states plus Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia.  The exhibition is on view through May 6. Cake!  In celebration of Van Gogh’s 159th birthday, the City of Philadelphia has declared today, Friday, March 30th “Van Gogh Appreciation Day.” Starting at 11:30am, the PMA will be serving a birthday cake inspired by van Gogh’s masterpiece, Almond Blossom; the cake, provided by Steven Starr Events, will be cut and served to the first 159 people in line for the Van Gogh Up Close exhibition.

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Poster for “Keynotes.” ICA Philadelphia March 31. Nick Paparone/Pooneh Maghazehe, presented by Bodega in Conjunction with first Among Equals.

Former Philly artist Nick Paparone, known for his elaborate and unhinged performances, and Pooneh Maghazehe present “Keynotes,” the first performance in the series that Bodega organized for First Among Equals at the ICA. It begins this coming Saturday, March 31, at 2pm.

Sad news – In their effort to restructure and revitalize in the face of economic challenges, Philagrafika will no longer retain paid staff but will be run by a working board and volunteer staff. As major fans of their festival in 2010, and hoping to see a second in the future, we wish them well in this venture.

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Phil Jackson’s skate photos for Juice Magazine.

In the media – Jennifer Levonian has been selected as Editor’s Choice in the current issue of Bomb Magazine. Jayson Musson has been featured twice this month, once in an interview with Alexander Cavaluzzo in this month’s Interview Magazine, and in Austin Considine’s profile in The New York Times. Joan Nelson and Paul Swenbeck’sFleisher/Ollman shows were reviewed in Art in America. Two reviews of Bill Walton’s concurrent solo exhibitions at JTT Gallery and James Fuentes Gallery in New York, can be found in The New York Observer and  The New York Times.  WHYY will be hosting Tyler School of Art faculty members Odili Odita and Karyn Olivier in the show “Magical Visions,” curated by Keith Morrison; “Magical Vision” airs tonight, March 30, on WHYY-TV. Phil Jackson has a number of current features, including a 6-page interview in issue #4 of Confusion Magazine (based in Köln, Germany) out now; full interview here; an interview in Shortwave Zine Issue #2 (based in Allentown, PA), released this weekend; and a 12-page article on FDR Skatepark featuring a collection of Jackson’s skate photos in Juice Magazine.

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Artist Caryn Kunkle.

Of all the people with a stake in the Divine Lorraine’s future, Philly artist Caryn Kunkle’s might just be the most innovative yet. Partnering with New York architect Matthew Baird, she hopes to transform the Divine into a Philadelphia Interactive Museum of Contemporary Art; the project, which Kunkle calls “The Return of the Beautiful,” would create a “museum triangle” connecting the Divine to PAFA and the Convention Center in Center City and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Barnes and Rodin Museum on the Ben Franklin Parkway. More details on her work on this project can be found at The Philadelphia Salon.

Peter Greenaway’s 92 suitcases.

The Slought Foundation needs your old suitcases! Slought is collecting 92 vintage suitcases and the contents of the suitcases for exhibition in the store front window. They will be used to tell the story of Tulse Luper, a character from one of visiting filmmaker Peter Greenaway’s films, whose life from 1928 to the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 will be reconstructed from the evidence of 92 suitcases found around the world. Slought will have a workshop on March 31st from 5:30-7:30pm for those interested in brainstorming contents for the suitcases with Slought curators. The drop-off date for suitcases will be April 1st from 2-4pm and the pick-up date for their retrieval will be April 21st from 4-6pm. Suitcases will be inventoried upon arrival, inspected according to the TSA screening process, and returned to their owners at the close of the exhibition.


The City of Germantown, Tennessee is seeking artwork for its first annual Sculpture Promenade Project, October 2012 through August 2013. Three-dimensional, free-standing sculptures of any media suitable for long-term installation in outdoor public spaces are sought for six sites. They are also looking for one work of art that is suitable for suspension from the ceiling of the City Hall public area. Open to all professional artists over the age of 18 living in the U.S. Each artist selected for the project will receive a $1,000 stipend per sculpture. Artists can make works available for purchase at the end of the exhibition. Deadline: April 20. More information can be found at the New England Foundation for the Arts website.

CUE Arts Foundation is having an open call for curatorial proposals. They are seeking group show proposals that are conceptually rigorous and focus on innovative, challenging artists, projects, and themes (especially ideas that are not well represented in the commercial sector). The deadline for submissions is 6 PM on May 30.

The Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts has put out a call for artist-in-residence submissions.  Artists will live at the DCCA and collaborate with an under-served community group for ten weeks to create artwork based on issues relevant to the participants’ lives. There is an $8000 stipend for the 10 weeks, and a live-work space is provided, as well as separate stipends for supplies and travel.

PhillyWorks has put out a call for collaborative projects for the “Qualities of Life in Philadelphia” exhibition at the Philadelphia Art Alliance, which will run September to December 2012. The work submitted must be collaborative in nature and make use of more than one skill set. More details found here.

The April 1 deadline is fast approaching for the West Collection prize applications. Artists chosen for West Collects 2012 will have their works added to the West Collection, and take part in the 2012 West Collects exhibition and catalog. Upload your application and pictures of your work at their website.

Pterodactyl has put out a call for entries for their Animal Show, looking for work that explores how people project their myths, fantasies and ideas onto animals. Running July 14 to August 18, Opening Reception July 14, the entry deadline is May 31.


The Department of Art and Rowan University Art Gallery present HIGH/LOW DENSITY, a show that hosts the work of a number of Philly artists.  Here’s who’s in the large show: Kim Beck, Mark Campbell, Kara Crombie, David McQueen, Erin Murray, Peter Rose, Blaise Tobia and Anthony Angelicola. Co-curated by Mark Campbell and Mary Salvante, the exhibition runs March 26-May 12, with an opening reception on Thursday, March 29th, from 5:30 – 7:00 pm.

Stuart Shils, “Red.” Oil on linen, 30 x 42 inches, 2012.

Stuart Shils‘ upcoming show in NYC will diverge from his previous work; after spending the last four summers in Italy, he has produced a series of large abstract canvases, each with a dissolved object and strong use of color. The show, held at Steven Harvey Fine Arts Projects runs April 26 – May 27, 2012, with a reception Thursday, April 26; additionally, Shils is giving a gallery talk Sunday, May 20, at 2 PM, at which he will discuss his inspiration for his new work.

Virginia Maksymowicz is in “Circuitous Routes,” a group show at BronxArtSpace whose members trace the links between memory, personal history, objects and place. With an artists’ reception on April 14 from 4-7 PM, the show opens on April 4 and closes the 28th.

Many MFA programs now facilitate New York exhibits for their graduating students. Dustin Metz– a former Philadelphia artist active at the late, lamented FLUXspace and Funnel Pages (and a personal favorite here at artblog) – is in the 2012 Rutgers MFA Program show at the Gary Snyder Project Space ; “Grouper” runs April 12-April 27.

On Monday April 2, Emilie Ledieu and Miriam Singer dedicate their mosaic “Under the Clothespin” in the underground entrance to Centre Square, just steps down from Claes Oldenburg’s Clothespin. The piece, a tribute to Philadelphia’s diverse cityscape, will be launched from 10:00 AM -1:00 PM.  The piece is sponsored by the City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program and CommonWealth REIT.