Monday, July 27, 2009
Notes from all over
I would love to have been in on the meeting that determined the language on the I-90 billboard advertising the current show at the Clark Art Institute. It says "This summer - Georgia O'Keeffe," with no mention of poor Arthur Dove (the show itself is called Dove/O'Keeffe: Circles of Influence).
Now, I understand that these are hard times for museums, and that summer is their best chance to rake in as much box-office as they can (especially the Clark, where admission is free in the off-season). I also understand that for every person who's heard of Dove there are probably 10,000 who've heard of O'Keeffe. But I'd like to think that a two-person show could be advertised as such and still draw viewers. Silly me! Clearly, the PR people making decisions for the Clark know on which side their bread is buttered.
BTW, watch this space for a review of the Dove/O'Keeffe show, to be posted on Aug. 10.
I ran into the incomparable chanteuse Jill Hughes on Sunday at the Salsa Celtica show in Schenectady's Central Park (big shout-out to Mona Golub for her 20 years of service to the global music-loving community), and she told me she is working on a new solo CD, set to come out at a release party at the Van Dyck in September.
The last time I heard Jill sing was a few years back, on the stage with the Funk Brothers at Albany's Washington Park, and she totally belonged up there with those R&B legends. This Thursday, she'll be in the mosh pit with the rest of us, as Tower of Power provides a much-needed soul vaccination at Alive at Five. Don't miss it.
Last Thursday, a new experience was offered at the University Art Museum, when six of the artists in the current Mohawk-Hudson Regional participated in a Japanese-style slide talk they called Fast Talk. Brian Cirmo, Sharon Bates, Kelly Jones, Dorene Quinn, Richard Garrison and Harold Lohner were given 20 seconds per slide to talk about 20 images (that's less than 7 minutes total per artist) to an engaged and amused audience.
Before, between, and after the Fast Talks, DJ Truemaster spun house music while art fans mingled with each other and the Regional's diverse offerings. It was particularly fun to observe as gray-curled, bespectacled museum director Janet Riker introduced and thanked "DJ True," proving that you can be geeky, middle-aged, and hip all at once.
The artists appeared to have a ball with the breezy format, even when the wrong slide popped up, which only happened a couple of times but was still enough to keep them on their toes. All in all, it was entertaining, informative, and well received by a capacity crowd. I hope they'll bring the concept back again.
Note: the Regional - an annual must-see for local art lovers and lovers of local art - ends on Aug. 8, so if you haven't seen it yet, you still have time.