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Slow Motion Conversation

We’ve been busy in Star Studio during Andy Warhol Enterprises…then again, it might be more accurate to say that our visitors have been busy. Star Studio is a space designed to encourage visitors of all ages  to participate in hands-on exploration of works of art on display at the IMA.  Star Studio projects encourage visitors to think about art by making art of their own, by creating in dialogue with the work on display.  Andy Warhol Enterprises has definitely sparked quite a few of those creative conversations in Star Studio.  We’ve divided the activities in Star between making art and writing about the intersection between art and commerce.

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You should write that down

The pocket sketchbook is the universal tool of artists, writers, musicians, designers, archeologists, and pretty much anyone who might need to note something now and refer to it later.

It is a little life raft for ideas, observations, and inspirations-it saves them from drowning in the deep sea of everything else that occupies space in your mind.

You don’t want the seed of an idea that might turn into something great getting lost in there between the names of your cousin’s dogs and the half-remembered lyrics to the theme song from Mr. Belvedere.

100 Acres opens to the public on Sunday.  Brand, spanking new works of art and architecture , music and dance performances, spontaneous freebasketballing, the chance to meet people who live on an island in the lake, a giant insect (and probably a few regular sized ones, too) …plenty of things that might trigger your next big idea.

There’s a lot going on though, and you don’t want to forget this kernel of a brilliant notion, so you reach for your trusty sketchbook to make a quick note and…what’s that?

No sketchbook?  Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.  Stop by the area just outside of the Visitors Pavilion and make your own sketchbook/field journal/idea bank.  Assemble it, personalize it and make it your own, then head out into the park to draw a diagram of the dynamic interaction of participants in a team building exercise or jot down a few lines of poetry inspired by a peek into a bee hive.

Bring your sketchbook back on your next visit to the museum and explore the park further, or drop by the Visitors Pavilion and make a new one between noon and 4 pm each Sunday from July 11 – September 26.


Tidying Up

I received an email the other day from a good friend with whom I attended the Cleveland Institute of Art in the mid 1990’s. He had been back to Cleveland for a visit, and had met up with another CIA painting alum to walk the galleries at the Cleveland Museum of Art. He wrote about revisiting paintings that had been important to him during school, like Rubens’ Portrait of Isabella Brant and about other paintings that stood out now, at this different moment in his life, including an Inness landscape. I haven’t been back to Cleveland since 1999, and I’m curious about which paintings might stop me now, and how different the list might be for me today than it would have been 10 years ago. To tell the truth, it isn’t necessary to travel to a museum that I haven’t been to for many years to have a similar experience. I’ve been working at the IMA for a little over five years, and I am amazed by how often a work of art that I haven’t paid much attention to suddenly asserts itself.

Isabel Bishop’s Tidying Up

Isabel Bishop’s Tidying Up

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Available Seating

The current Star Studio exhibition, More than Four Legs: A Closer Look at Chairs asks visitors to think carefully about and look closely at chairs. Of course, since this is a Star Studio exhibition, visitors are also encouraged to translate these thoughts and observations into practice by creating a model chair to display or take home.  I thought it might be fun to share images of a few of the chairs that visitors have left in Star Studio.

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Context Clues

An art museum provides a very specific sort of context for its contents.  As a visitor walks through the collections, there is a kind of underlying thesis at work: these things all fit, in one way or another, into a broad category.

It isn’t as simple as “If it’s in a museum, it must be art”, but then again… it almost is that simple.  I think that idea explains why we all sometimes respond so strongly when we encounter an element of an exhibition that doesn’t immediately fit our own perception of what the parameters for contents of the “Things that Go in an Art Museum” category of objects are (or should be).

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About Phillip

Job Title: Manager of Gallery Education and Studio Programs

Interests: I make paintings and listen to music. I watch a lot of children’s television and build some pretty great block towers with my kids.

Favorite Movies: hmm…I’ll say O Brother Where Art Thou? and Dead Man would make the list. Mystery Train would be there, too.

Favorite Music: too much to list…right now my “recently played” list usually includes Wilco, Jens Lekman, Destroyer, Tom Waits, Great Lakes Swimmers, The Strugglers, The Clash, and a good chunk of the Labrador Records catalog.

Favorite Food: I like bread. I’m not sure that it is my favorite food, but it is up there.

Pets: One large cat named Murphy

Something you should know about me: My job title, interests, favorite movies, favorite music, favorite food, and the name of my pet cat. I’ll fill you in on the rest later.

Phillip has written 9 articles for us.