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(File photo of Artpark by K&D Action Photo & Aerial Imaging)
(File photo of Artpark by K&D Action Photo & Aerial Imaging)

'The Artpark Idea Series' conversations explore past, present & future of visual arts legacy

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Mon, Mar 1st 2021 09:30 am

New series runs March 19-April 23

Artpark & Company on Monday announced a special series of online conversations to explore Artpark’s visual arts legacy in a modern context. The “Artpark Idea Series” will feature eight notable artists connected to Artpark over six weekly sessions to be held via Zoom beginning Friday, March 19. Each talk will be hosted by Dr. Anthony Bannon and Artpark President Sonia Clark. Attendees will be able to engage with the artists live, while proceeds from ticket sales will benefit the “Artpark Live” campaign.

Founded in 1974, Artpark soon became one of the leading locations for the land art movement, inviting hundreds of artists to build temporary works on site. The "Artpark Idea" was to create a place where visitors became active participants perceiving objects over time – from shifting perspectives and in relationship to the architecture. A place where art, public and site become inextricably intertwined.

Artistic creation at Artpark generated immediate social, historical and ecological implications that artists embraced and incorporated into their processes. The result was art that belonged where it was and where the relationship between creator and receiver was dynamic and alive.

How this idea influenced the artists then and what it may be now is in the center of discussions with the artists and audience.

Planned programs include:

•Florian Idenburg + Omar Khan: March 19: Idenburg (Artpark architect 2020/Artpark artist 2021) is founding partner of international design and architecture firm SO–IL and associate professor in practice of architecture at Harvard’s Graduate School of Design. He also served as associate at Pritzker Prize-winning SANAA in Tokyo where he was charged with the design and realization of two internationally acclaimed museums: the Glass Pavilion at the Toledo Museum of Art and the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York.

Khan (Artpark architect 2020/Artpark artist 2021) is a professor and the head of the School of Architecture at Carnegie Mellon University. He joined CMU from the department of architecture at the University at Buffalo, where he served as department chair for seven years. Khan’s research and creative activities span architecture, installation/performance art, and digital design and fabrication. He is also the co-principal, with Laura Garófalo, of Liminal Projects, an architectural research office; and partner in Gekh, a design consultancy.

As architects, Idenburg and Khan have recently led Artpark’s master plan along with the team of SO-IL, West-8, CharcoalBlue and Gekh with artistic residencies placed at the heart of the plan. As artists, both have installations scheduled at Artpark.

•Mary Miss: March 26: Miss (Artpark artist in 1976) has reshaped the boundaries between sculpture, architecture, landscape design and installation, articulating a vision of engagement for the public sphere. In 2009, Miss founded City as Living Laboratory, creating a framework for making issues of sustainability and climate change tangible through the arts. Her work has been shown at the Guggenheim Museum, the Sculpture Center and the Des Moines Art Center. Miss has been recognized by numerous awards, including a fellowship from the Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, the Urban Land Institute's Global Award for Excellence and the 2017 Bedrock of New York City Award.

Miss and City as Living Laboratory have developed a plan for “Artpark Laboratory,” which will transform Artpark into a place where artists are offered opportunities to develop strategies that advance environmental awareness, literacy and sustainable development. The plan was launched with an installation curated by Miss: “Bower” by Ellen Driscoll and Joyce Hwang in 2016, currently on display at Artpark. Next steps are awaiting funding.

•Robert Booth + Diane Bertolo: April 2: Sculptor Booth (Artpark artist in 1983) has presented his work in more than 100 solo and group exhibitions over the past 30 years, including two major one-man shows at the Burchfield Penney. A Distinguished Teaching Professor at the State University of New York, Fredonia, he has led the sculpture curriculum there since 1978.

Bertolo (Artpark artist in 1983) works with pixels, paper, sticks and stones to create clocks and calendars that mix chaos with logic as they mark the passage of time; to make small poetic objects that celebrate the “everyday” and to ask questions that are unspeakable in our first language. Her work has been shown in many exhibitions over the years at sites including the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Burchfield Penney and San Francisco Art Institute. She has received numerous prestigious fellowships and awards.

While both artists were in residence at Artpark in the same year, they never met, but said they look forward to comparing notes on their experiences.

•Owen Morrel: April 9: Morrel (Artpark artist in 1980) has been creating prominent site-specific sculpture for over 40 years. He started in the New York art scene during which time he created several major public installations and had work exhibited in galleries and museums across the U.S. and Europe. Since then, he has worked in the public sphere, where his large works have been commissioned by colleges and universities, state and city governments and community groups all across the world. His public sculptures include a 110-foot observation deck over the Niagara River (Artpark’s “Omega”). He has been featured in documentaries, books, newspapers and magazines.

•Evan Lewis: April 16: Lewis (Artpark artist in 1987, 1989, 1991) has been an active artist/sculptor since 1978. His interest in kinetic wind-powered art has led him to work primarily in metal. Equally important to his work is the incorporation of sound, which is produced through delicate wind-powered percussive components. In 1988, Lewis was commissioned to create his first large-scale wind/sound sculpture for “Expo 88” in Brisbane, Australia. Numerous commissions have followed, including site-specific works for universities, municipal institutions and private collections. In 1995, several of Lewis’ sculptures were commissioned by Warner Bros. Entertainment for the major motion picture “Twister.”

•Philip Burke: April 23: Internationally renowned artist Burke has captured the hearts and minds of rock ’n’ roll fans, movie aficionados, sports enthusiasts, politicos and the general public for more than 30 years. His work has adorned the pages and covers of Time, Newsweek, Vanity Fair, The New Yorker, GQ, Vogue, Sports Illustrated, The New York Times, The New York Observer, Slate, Talk, Rolling Stone and other publications. For the past several seasons, Artpark patrons have experienced Burke painting live during select concert events.

•Agnes Denes: While not able to participate in person, Denes (Artpark artist 1977-79) has invited the series’ audience to participate in her latest project – a time capsule. All “Artpark Idea Series” attendees will have the opportunity to complete a questionnaire to be included in a time capsule in London. It will collect the experiences of living through the pandemic and will be opened in the year 2030.

Bannon joined the Artpark board of directors in 2020 and was an active artist, photographer and writer with Artpark in its first two decades. He served as the executive director of the Burchfield Penney Art Center in 1985-96 and 2012-17. Prior to his second appointment at the Burchfield Penney, Bannon was the seventh (and longest-tenured) director of the George Eastman Museum in Rochester. Bannon has lectured at museums, colleges and festivals worldwide. He received the J. Dudley Johnson medal for history and criticism from the Royal Photographic Society of Great Britain. He also was awarded the St. Bonaventure University Gaudete Medal, the university’s highest honor, and has received numerous other awards and recognitions regionally and abroad. He is on the board of national magazine The Photo Review based in Philadelphia, and the FOTOfusion board in Palm Springs. He recently completed a 10-year term with the Lucie Awards/International Photography Awards and was awarded the Golden Career Award in 2007 by the FOTOfusion Festival of Photography & Digital Imaging for his “far-reaching leadership and scholarship in the cultural community.” He has authored or contributed to more than 40 books held in more than 1,500 libraries and in six languages.

All “Artpark Idea Series” events will be held at 7 p.m. via Zoom, and attendance is limited. Tickets for the six event series will be available by subscription with a minimum donation of $30, or may be purchased individually for a minimum donation of $5. Tax-deductible contributions help nonprofit Artpark & Company continue its mission to create, nurture and present the arts. Visit www.artpark.net for further information and tickets.

The Earl W. Brydges Artpark is being operated by Artpark & Company Inc. for the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation under a long-term collaborative agreement.

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