We are just a few weeks from Design Week Fort Wayne, May 7-11 at the Arts United Center. I am really excited for Friday's fashion day. Sheila Rashid will be speaking and I am really excited to hear more about her brand. "Sheila Rashid, Chicago's bespoken designer, has shown remarkable talent in her journey to create pieces that confront and curtail gender identity. This unisex brand takes a new approach to creativity, simplicity, and persistency. Sheila's goal has been to design with a unique perspective and an acute attentiveness to detail. Her brand's individuality has attracted many popular artists, such as Zendaya, Lena Waithe, Fucci, Bella Hadid and Chance the Rapper to name a few. Each of her pieces are made-to-order and reflect her own sense of style, combining both tomboy and feminine qualities". Get your tickets for Design Week Fort Wayne at www.designweekfw.com.
- Maddie Miller, Gallery Coordinator
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows,
is a mouthful for a book title, but is one of the best books I have read in a long time. The movie based on it started showing in theatres last week. Do not see the movie without reading the book. Whichever order you decide to do that is up to you, but I loved the book so much that I am almost afraid to see the movie; afraid that it won't meet my expectations.
Here is its synopsis from Good Reads:
"Written with warmth and humor as a series of letters, this novel is a celebration of the written word in all its guises, and of finding connection in the most surprising ways.
'I wonder how the book got to Guernsey? Perhaps there is some sort of secret homing instinct in books that brings them to their perfect readers.'
January 1946: London is emerging from the shadow of the Second World War, and writer Juliet Ashton is looking for her next book subject. Who could imagine that she would find it in a letter from a man she’s never met, a native of the island of Guernsey, who has come across her name written inside a book by Charles Lamb….
As Juliet and her new correspondent exchange letters, Juliet is drawn into the world of this man and his friends—and what a wonderfully eccentric world it is. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society—born as a spur-of-the-moment alibi when its members were discovered breaking curfew by the Germans occupying their island—boasts a charming, funny, deeply human cast of characters, from pig farmers to phrenologists, literature lovers all.
Juliet begins a remarkable correspondence with the society’s members, learning about their island, their taste in books, and the impact the recent German occupation has had on their lives. Captivated by their stories, she sets sail for Guernsey, and what she finds will change her forever."
- Lorraine Knox, Office Manager
This is going to be a bit of a weird one, but my pick this month is the outdoors! I know it isn't necessarily art related.. but there is nothing that inspires me to create art more than spending some time in nature. I may be a tad biased as a landscape painter, but I truly believe it would help any artist. Especially now, after most of us have probably spent the winter months cooped up inside, it's easy to become uninspired and unmotivated. But now the weather is beautiful and I recommend treating yourself to a stress-free day of walking around somewhere beautiful to get those creative juices flowing! Not to mention all of other mental and physical health benefits of spending time in nature. There are hundreds of fantastic hiking trails in Indiana alone if you don't wish to travel far, as well as equally awesome trails in the surrounding states that are close enough for a quick day trip. I will link some of my personal favorites below, but also try doing some research to find a trail perfect for you and the amount of time and physical energy you wish to exert. Many of these places also have kayaking, horseback riding, and camping if you'd like to stay longer!
In Fort Wayne: ACRES Land Trust, Lindenwood Nature Preserve, Metea County Park, Fox Island County Park, Payton County Park.
In Indiana: Brown County State Park, Turkey Run State Park, Shades State Park,
Kokiwanee Nature Preserve, Fort Harrison State Park.
Nearby states: Starved Rock State Park, Hocking Hills State Park, Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Muskegon State Park, Daniel Boone National Forest.
- Ellen Mensch, Gallery Assistant
Animation artist Oliver Latta
His work is visually stunning, unsettling and visually maddening. What some would view as simple technical tests, Latta takes and pushes the medium forward in the space between experimental and narrative leaving the viewer (as in my case) curiously perplexed. These are a far cry from Toy Story.
You can find another excellent example of his work here.
- Matt McClure, Executive Director
Check out Three Rivers
Dance. The organization was founded this year by a group of young, professional dancers from Fort Wayne Ballet, FW Dance Collective, and Arthur Murray Dance Center. Their mission is to create a meaningful impact on the lives of Fort Wayners through exposure to professional dance. They are performing in parks for free all summer with their first performance coming up on Wednesday, June 20 at Lakeside Park. Performances will be original works with a variety of dance genres including ballet, modern and ballroom.
I know the following three dancers from TRD because they pose in costume for Artlink's Figure Drawing Sessions. And beautifully! Founding member of Three Rivers Dance, Stephen Blood received his formal dance training at Northern Illinois University where he received his BFA and is currently with FW Ballet. He also teaches at Arthur Murray. Saki Morimoto grew up in Osaka, Japan, received her BFA in dance from University of North Carolina School of the Arts. She joined FW Ballet for the 2017-18 season. Mara Gordon is with FW Ballet. Mara, at age 12 danced with the Manhattan Youth Ballet and attended summer intensive at American Ballet Theatre in New York. So, these kids are professional dancers!
Also in the group are Erik Osterkil of FW Dance Collective who studied at SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Dance, NY; Joshua Ehinger who began dancing 5 years ago and now is a Silver Certified teacher with Arthur Murray International. Joshua likes to teach lesser known dances, such as the Peabody and Drag Blues. Amy Schuldt has her BA in Graphic Design from IPFW and began ballroom dancing in 2007. After 11 years as a professional dancer, she is Full Silver Certified with Arthur Murray. She also teaches dance at IT Institute, Huntington University and Bethlehem Lutheran School.
So check out a free dance performance, plein aire and take the whole family,
- Suzanne Galazka, Figure Drawing
As I prepare for my first trip to London in June, I began to only have eyes for a restaurant named Sketch London.
This space was constructed by a creative dream team. From the work uniforms to the dining ware to the multi-room concepts and outer space unisex bathrooms, this restaurant was built to inspire and of course, work as the best place to Instagram your brunch or afternoon tea. It first caught my attention when I thought I was witnessing a scene from a Wes Anderson film, but we all get our inspiration from somewhere right? My favorite restaurant space of the three was designed by Egyptian Iranian artist, India Mahdavi, and it includes the largest exhibition of David Shrigley's original drawings within the space. Pink from top to bottom and every single prop in the space is carefully curated. Here are links to their Instagram and website if you're interested!
- Eden Hakimzadeh, Gallery Intern