Here are some of the celebrity portraits my 8th grade Studio in Art students (from Chittenango Middle School) finished back in March. I didn’t display them because I was saving them for the school fair, which never happened.
I allow students to pick almost anyone – meaning anyone “appropriate”, and this year you will see a variety from sports, performing arts, the art world and social media (and one grand-dad). Two Steve Harveys, lol. He wins as most popular this time.
We are so lucky to have some of the most beautiful New York State parks in our area. The meromictic lake trails and glacier produced hills of Green Lakes State Park and Clark Reservation are among my favorites.
But today I decided to traipse around the Stone Quarry Hill Art Park (3883 Stone Quarry Road, Cazenovia, New York 13035) – investigating paths I had never ventured on and, really, exploring the entire park. Dorothy Riester’s legacy to Cazenovia, New York is a great gift to the public. The park is open and currently free. Everyone is on their honor to come in small family groups or alone and to steer clear of the other patrons.
There were, maybe, six other people there today. The forecast said rain but it was all bright sunshine when I arrived. It was as if someone lead me there, truly. I was inspired to go after meditating and when I arrived it was just incredibly magical.
My motto is to meditate every day, then spend time outside every day and to be grateful – to keep a gratitude journal and write down the positive aspects in my life every day. The gratitude today was pretty much over-the-top. Exploring these trails was fun in and of itself, but then there was this added bonus of stumbling upon works of art. Sculptures scattered around, both new and old familiar friends. Some meant to be temporary and others standing the test of time.
Escaping into this reality for a couple hours is the stuff of legend. Thank you, thank you, thank you, Dorothy, for building this world. <3
The Erie Canal Museum (318 Erie Blvd. East, Syracuse, New York 13202) is host to a ceramics exhibition, one installed in February 2020. The museum is currently closed due to the world-wide health crisis – that makes interacting with the clay vessels (created as site-specific art) nearly impossible.
This is an irony because the idea behind the work envelopes the scope of human life, as it interacts with the forces of nature, the forces of water and the history of the man-made canal. The humans in question are every socio-economic level of local and regional society. All races of people who, in some way, have interacted with, associated with or had some understanding of what the Erie Canal has meant in our history, as well as those who have no idea but in fact, have been, inadvertently, affected by the legendary waterway.
Artist Linda Zhang was the 2017-2018 Boghosian Fellow in the School of Architecture at Syracuse University. She came to Syracuse from Europe and knowing no one, she spent time meditating (think deep thought) on designing the curriculum for this relatively new fellowship. She proceeded to think about and create strategies for the design of her position, ideas that would ultimately catapult her educational journey to include making art and teaching electives at the college, which led to philosophical-infused artwork and the idea of making meaning in terms of one’s personal vortex. This path included an interdisciplinary union with Errol Willet, Associate Professor of Art (ceramics) and Biko Mandela Gray, Assistant Professor of American Religion.
Although Zhang is currently a professor at Ryerson University in Toronto, The Story of Water pairs the artist with her SU educational cohorts. The clay vessels in this exhibition were slip cast and formatted utilizing water from the canal. There is a transformation – water crafts and the art is manipulated to create a phenomenological transcendence – art as symbolism.
Taking an idea and moving it through time, so that the result is present while encompassing a larger whole – this is incredibly interesting on so many levels. Fortunately for all, nothing is truly impossible. This exhibition can be viewed remotely. Zhang will be offering a lecture on her process via an on-line Zoom meeting. This event takes place on Saturday, April 18, 2020 at 1:00 PM. Click on the link above to join the party or check out the same link by way of the event’s Facebook page.
The event is free, however; donations to the museum are welcome. <3
*from the Erie Canal Museum web-site
February 3-April 16, 2020:The Story of Water: The Erie Canal as a Site of Untold Stories
“The Story of Water” is a collaborative project between Linda Zhang, Assistant Professor of Architecture at Ryerson University, and Biko Gray, Assistant Professor of Religion at Syracuse University. This exhibit features clay vessels based on 3-D drone scans of Erie Canal structures, transformed by the introduction of Canal water before the firing process. The resulting clay models symbolize the transformative effects, positive and negative, that the Erie Canal had on the lives of those who built it, used it, and lived near it.
Zhang will discuss the artwork, her creative process, and what inspired her and collaborator Biko Gray to develop this exhibit. “The Story of Water” features clay vessels based on 3-D drone scans of Erie Canal structures in Central New York. The artist introduced Canal water to the pieces before the firing process, creating models that symbolize the transformative character of water and the Erie Canal.
The Museum is currently closed to the public to protect visitors, volunteers, and staff from Covid-19. We’re working diligently to serve you by offering programs by alternative means, and greatly appreciate your help. You can make a donation to the Museum through the link in the “Get Tickets” box below,
We look forward to seeing you on April 18 for this thought-provoking talk!
I am loving this project. Here is another amazing art activity that brings a community together. We are Chittenango! We are Bears. #BearCountryStrong
I would love to see these saturating social media. Show me your paw. Make it using this template with markers, crayons, colored pencil or make it sculptural, with rocks, sea shells, buttons, or create a multi-media collage using magazine images, ink stamps or even thread.
We may be social distancing, isolating, but we can stand together artistically. How totally cool!!!!! <3
It started out as an experiment. How could Michael John Heagerty create an homage to artist Ji Lee, as well as manufacture a happening that transcends art and becomes a part of the bigger picture?
Answer: plant umbrellas.
Last summer, as co-owner of Wildflowers Armory (217 S. Salina Street, Syracuse, New York 13202), Heagerty collaborated to install a series of umbrellas in the nook next to the gallery’s former location. The event, called #colorfulcanopysyr invited patrons to visit and share their photographs on social networks, which led to a “Best Selfie Spot” award from local media.
The umbrellas lend color to otherwise dreary spaces, according to the artist, as follows:
Red is a very emotionally intense color. It enhances human metabolism, increases respiration rate, and raises blood pressure & appetite. Red represents COURAGE.
Pink is intuitive and insightful, showing tenderness and kindness with its empathy and sensitivity. Pink represents HOPE.
Yellow is the most luminous of all the colors of the spectrum. It’s the color that captures our attention more than any other color. It’s the color of happiness, and optimism, of enlightenment and creativity, sunshine and spring. Yellow represents HAPPINESS.
Burgundy, named for the French region of wine-making, shows unconventional thinking, a desire for being unique and self expression. It can increase your energy, like red. Burgundy represents COMFORT.
The umbrella configurations have visited several locations in the past few days. They have spent twenty-four hours each at Onondaga Park, Woodland Reservoir, Onondaga Creekwalk, Thornden Park and their present location, Willow Bay at Onondaga Lake Parkway (3858 Long Branch Road, Liverpool, New York 13090).
They are planted in the ground (curved handles removed), and to honor our current life circumstances, they are pointing towards hospitals or engaging in the six-feet-apart modality.
For the next phase, the future installments will last forty-eight hours in duration. This for those who adhere to an every-other-day walk-about, as we further distance ourselves while allowing the medical epidemic to dissipate. The installations will continue as phantom pop-ups to sustain the idea’s magic.
Heagerty is a fan of the artist Christo who, along with his wife Jeanne-Claude, created large-scale temporary installations for the purpose of fulfilling a happiness and joy credo or art for art’s sake, in addition to making the invisibility of common-place landscapes visible via “immediate aesthetic impact”.
It is this purpose Michael John Heagerty aligns with most. This is his love-letter to Syracuse, New York, suggesting that we WILL get through this mayhem with courage, hope, happiness and comfort, and above all, a caring, creative-arts zest for life. <3
***all other photographs not tagged are used with permission courtesy of the artist
Two of my classes used hand-building skills to create these adorable clay lizards. We used the Sax Colorburst glazes. I love the colors, especially the Firecracker!!! The projects remain in the glass case in the Chittenango Middle School atrium.
We looked at the work of the Aboriginals of Australia for inspiration. Different patterns were added to the body, head, limbs and tail using a variety of techniques.
My B-day Art-8 students (Chittenango Middle School) created these clay masks. We used Sax Colorburst glazes. They have silica flakes that pop in the kiln creating confetti-like effects.
I offered students thirteen different colors and asked that they use at least six, making sure to place three coats of glaze on the mask for each color. It was tricky because the glazes transform in the kiln – there is that allowance for serendipity that doesn’t work if you are a control freak, but totally does if you are experimental.
I added a wire to the back so they can hang on the wall. Students took them home today. I miss them already!
My Studio in Art students recently completed these still-life paintings based on photographs I took last year at Vince’s Gourmet Imports (440 S. Main Street, North Syracuse, New York 13212).
I have paired them here with the resource picture. Contour line drawings made on white drawing paper were transferred to canvas panel via the magic of graphite paper. Then students used acrylic paint. They had their own palettes and mixed colors by adding white and raw sienna to every hue, which gives the paintings a sense of unity (the colors “go” together). I encouraged them to maintain their own styles. This included the option of outlining in black, consistent brush work, removing or adding text, and creating a different background.
They are 8th graders taking this high-school level course for high school credit and the opportunity to take upper level art electives next year. We have one quarter left of the school year – I have plans for two more lessons to complete course work off-campus if necessary. The Chittenango Central School District is temporarily closing on Tuesday with an indefinite return date at this time.
Kindness is a behavior marked by ethical characteristics, a pleasant disposition, and concern and consideration for others. It is considered a virtue, and is recognized as a value in many cultures and religions. Wikipedia
National day: Observed on February 17th, National Random Acts of Kindness Day has grown in popularity each year.
Learn to pronounce
the quality of being friendly, generous, and considerate.
This year’s Doodle for Google competition has now closed. All entries had to be postmarked yesterday. These images are among the many I submitted – 8th graders from Chittenango Middle School. The winner receives $30,000, and $50,000 in technology for their school.
The theme of this year’s contest is “I show kindness by….”