Sunday, January 16, 2011

Seance with Art Supplies

Antonio Adams working on one of the large-scale "reinventions" of a large print of one of  Raymond Thunder-Sky's unfinished drawings.  Raymond, when walking around the city drawing deconstruction sites, would often not finish some of the drawings -- possibly because of the volume of pieces he did.  There are approximately 400 unfinished drawings in the archive. 

We're pulling together the "2 + 2 = 5: Collaborations" exhibit, opening April 29, 2011 at Thunder-Sky, Inc.  The show will feature variations on the theme of "collaboration," and how getting rid of "one author" can open up new vistas and territories to investigate.  We'll have the "Guernica" pieces Antonio Adams and the late Brian Joiner did together in 2008, a triptych of large golden panels reenacting Picasso's famous grand-guignol masterpiece, re-configuring and re-conjuring that visual feast using superhero and urban imagery.  Amazing work.  As well, Antonio is working on pieces, utilizing remnants donated  from Brian's studio.  Pamela Rhodes Myricks has written a beautiful elegy about Brian, and we'll be publishing it along with a brochure about the Antonio/Brian collaborations.  We've had large prints made of some of Raymond Thunder-Sky's unfinished works (thanks to Dan Leesman from United Electric), and David Mack, Antonio, and a few other artists are working on "finishing" them.  Thunder-Sky, Inc. co-founder Bill Ross has some collabs he did with the late Donald Henry.  The exhibit is shaping up to be about how collaboration is not just about people working on art together, but about how collaboration can be a sort of a continuation of a conversation, a seance with art supplies...

We're also going to publish a book of writings inspired by Dale Jackson's text-driven works.  Titled I Was Dreaming When I Wrote This, the book will feature color reproductions of Dale's works, side by side with the writings done by local poets and writers, including Patricia Murphy, Matt McBride and Micah Freeman.  We'll be sponsoring a reading of these works along with the opening in late April.  Matt Morris and Eric Ruschman are also going to contribute a sculptural piece.

Dale Jackson beside his work in January 2011's "Mechanics of Joy" exhibit at U-Turn Alternative Space in Brighton.

April 2011 is going to be a great month for collabs.  We're doing the "2 + 2 = 5" show, and Visionaries & Voices has a fundraiser called "Double Vision" at Memorial Hall April 22, 2011, featuring collaborative works by "established artists and V&V artists."  Which begs the question:  what is the different between Thunder-Sky, Inc. & V&V?  They were both established because of Raymond and Antonio basically.  Bill and I started supporting both Raymond and Antonio and many other self-taught artists back in 1999, and from that initial support grew V&V, a studio for artists with disabilities.  Bill and I left V&V in 2009 because it was a project we no longer needed to be a part of.  We cofounded Thunder-Sky, Inc. to underline the importance of collaboration and also to problematize/reenvision the notion of "outsider art" and programs for artists with disabilities... 

Can't wait for April!
Donald Henry and Bill Ross, "Dreamhouse," acrylic and marker on canvas, 2009.