Category Archives: art gallery

Terry & Harriet’s Legacy

Terry Plater, “Spaces Akin to Freedom”, 2021, oil, 12″ x 16″ $800

On Sunday, I was inspired to go the the Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center. I planned to meet up with my friend about forty minutes before I actually arrived, and luckily, that bit of procrastination created an unexpected rendezvous.

Terry Plater, the featured artist in the Gallery Julius, happened to be in attendance and was gracious enough to meet with me and that was AMAZING!

Plater’s exhibit is titled Harriet’s Legacy. It is a series of watercolored landscapes (along with a few oil paintings). They are abstracted with muted tones and sweeping brushstrokes creating a harmonious horizontal solitude. The paintings demonstrate a tranquility, as though the historical voices yearning for freedom that infuse these landscapes are finally at peace.

An historian from the Cayuga Museum of History & Art directed Plater to the actual places that Harriet Tubman walked to include the probable paths of the Underground Railroad. The artist imagined these places as they may have been, sort of remembering the past in a vision and injecting it with the love of four hundred years, the strength of character through tears of both sorrow and joy, and the quiet confidence and intelligence she exudes as the beautiful soul, artist, and teacher she is today.

It is a marriage between past and present with the focus on positive outcomes, as well as the deep respect for Tubman and people like her who had the courage to make the future brighter.

I see the power in that beauty – it isn’t the angst of social injustice. Each painting was inspired by text – by quotes from books, letters penned by “fugitive” slaves, and notes from recorded journals – all found in a library where Plater researched the Underground Railroad activities specific to the Auburn, New York area. The paintings echo the manifestations of desires, wishes, hopes and dreams that came true in spite of doubts, fears and sacrifice.

Each painting in this eleven-piece collection is for sale. They will be on display until August 7, 2021.

In addition, Plater is simultaneously showing paintings at the Cayuga Museum of History & Art. These are figurative paintings.

She has channeled a voice to the local African American past through a connection with her own family members. There is an ethereal flavor to these paintings as well, the same muted tones, albeit in oils. That museum was closed on Sunday, so I could not view the shows in tandem, but perhaps you still can!

So beautiful, uplifting and inspirational.

Terry Plater told me that her deepest wish is to share this journey with students, so, I want to relay that message to families who are looking to do a day trip. The museums are adjacent to one another and – you’re welcome.

Thank you, Terry Plater – you are a beautiful person inside and out, and it was a sincere pleasure to have met you. Continued success to you in your career as an artist and in all that you choose to do! <3

(from the SMAC website)

Artist Statement:
The idea for this exhibit came together for me in an iterative fashion as I contemplated three things: the 400th anniversary of the arrival of enslaved Africans in the now United States (in 2019); the release of the film “Harriet,” which so richly conveyed the life, struggles and triumphs of Harriet Tubman; and an ongoing project I have been undertaking: painting from old family photos to better come to know and honor the history of my own family in Maryland and Virginia.

The proposal links these discreet endeavors in a single narrative, one that imagines, represents, and celebrates family history and 19th-20th century public life — specifically here in upstate NY — as emblematic. The title is meant to convey several things: the intergenerational history, value, and ownership of our collective American story as embodied in slavery and emancipation, the acknowledgement of Harriet Tubman as a local figure and national treasure.

Terry Plater wishes to thank all those who made this exhibition possible: The Schweinfurth Art Center and the Cayuga Museum of History and Art in Auburn; and the Community Arts Partnership of Tompkins County.

The Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center is located at 205 Genesee Street, Auburn, New York 13021. For more information, including hours of operation, call (315) 255-1553 or visit their website here.

The Cayuga Museum of History & Art is located at 203 Genesee Street, Auburn, New York 13021. For more information, including hours of operation, call (315) 253-8051 or visit their website here.

Artsy In New York

Lee Hoag, Rochester, NY
Mary Begley, Buffalo, NY

Every year the Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center does a Made in New York (MINY) juried exhibition. This year’s show – what can I say? A lot of eggs and phallic symbols, am I right? OMG – round circular objects with the center piece sculpture filled with actual eggs. And every other sculpture is sporting the dildo-esqueness of a you-know-what.

LOL, so great! I wonder if this was the intent, or am I being fresh?

Sixty-nine artists were selected….

Shari Werner, New York, NY
Christina Bang, Pittsford, NY

Actually, the great thing about this exhibition is that artists must produce new work for it and everything looks very fresh in that sense of the word. It is all so colorful and curvy, clean, linear, firm and innocently provocative.

It’s a great show!

Jean K. Stephens, Honeoye, NY

MINY will be on display through August 7, 2021. Check out videos of the artists sharing their respective visions here.

Jurors for this year’s exhibition:

(from the Schweinfurth website)

Sharon Louden is an artist, educator, advocate for artists, editor of the Living and Sustaining a Creative Life series of books, and the Artistic Director of the Chautauqua Visual Arts at Chautauqua Institution. Louden’s work has been exhibited in numerous venues including the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, the Drawing Center, Carnegie Mellon University, Weisman Art Museum, National Gallery of Art and held in major public and private collections including the Whitney Museum of American Art, National Gallery of Art, Neuberger Museum of Art, Arkansas Arts Center, Yale University Art Gallery, Weatherspoon Art Museum, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, among others.

George Afedzi Hughes is originally from Ghana and studied painting at The Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, College of Art, Kumasi, Ghana, where he earned a BA in Art: Painting and Drawing (1989) and an MA in Art Education (1991).  He later received an MFA in Painting and Drawing (2001) from Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, Ohio, U.S.A. His paintings, performances, and installations have been featured in several museum exhibitions: Perez Museum, Royal Ontario Museum, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, National Football Museum, Gemeentemuseum Den Haag and Museum voor Zuid-en Noord-Beveland. The following museums have collections of his work: Royal Museum of Ontario, Harn Museum of Art, Iwalewahaus and the Ghana National Museum.

Hannah Frieser is the Executive Director for the Center for Photography at Woodstock, an arts organization that features exhibitions, residencies and other artist-oriented programming. With over twenty years of leadership experience in the visual arts, she has curated countless solo and group exhibitions with contemporary photographers, including Suzanne Opton, Adam Magyar and Barry Anderson. Her essays have been featured in monographs and publications, such as Contact Sheet, Exposure, and Nueva Luz. Prior to joining CPW, she was Director of Light Work in Syracuse, NY. 

Lauren Bristol, Syracuse, NY
John Fitzsimmons, Syracuse, NY
Charles Compo, New York, NY
Emily Kenas, Geneva, NY

MINY Artists

Carolyn Abrams
Liz Alderman
Robin Arnold
Patricia Bacon
Christina Bang
Howard Bartle
Madeline Bartley
Mary Begley
Marna Bell
Tammy Renée Brackett
Paul Brandwein
Lauren Bristol
Andrea Buckvold
Susan Byrnes
Carlos Caballero-Perez
Nancy Callahan
Eva Capobianco
Stephen Carlson
Kevin Carr
Tara Charles
Sage Churchill-Foster
Fernando Colón-González
Charles Compo
Cynthia Cratsley
Carole D’Inverno
Lisa DeLoria Weinblatt
KP Devlin
Lisa Donneson
Audrey Dowling
Robert Doyle
Sharon Draghi
Leonard Eichler
John Fitzsimmons
Faithanne Flesher
John Galt
Jacq Germanow
Cora Jane Glasser
Julia Graziano
Raechelle Hajduk
Barbara Hart
Laural Hartman
David Higgins
Lee Hoag
George Hrycun
Bob Ievers
Emily Kenas
Dale Klein
Tom Kredo
Timothy Massey
Becky McNeill
Valerie Patterson
Beth Pedersen
Judith Plotner
Rose Popper
Jim Quinn
Steve Rossi
Amy Schnitzer
Catherine Shuman Miller
James Skvarch
Jason Smith
Jean K. Stephens
Susan Stuart
Jane Verostek
Kim Waale
Mary Pat Wager
Shari Werner
Katharine Wood
Hope Zaccagni
Leah Zinder

Julia Graziano, Manlius, NY
Jim Quinn, Williamson, NY
Kim Waale, Manlius, NY/Nancy Callahan, Gilbertsville, NY

The Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center is located at 205 Genesee Street, Auburn, New York 13021. For more information, including hours of operation, call (315) 255-1553 or visit their website here.

Paul Brandwein, Rochester, NY
Robin Arnold, New Paltz, NY/Timothy Massey, Spencerport, NY
Charles Compo, New York, NY
Catherine Shuman Miller, Williamsville, NY
Andrea Buckvold, Syracuse, NY/Patricia Bacon, Lyons, NY
Mary Pat Wager, East Greenbush, NY
Cora Jane Glasser, Brooklyn, NY,
#coach #tashkovski #rebeccataylor #ragandbone

Homecoming

Jaleel Campbell’s solo exhibition in the Robineau Gallery at The Everson Museum of Art is scheduled to end on August 1, 2021. It’s not too late to see it! The museum is open noon-5pm Tuesday-Sundays with extended hours on Thursday. Call (315) 474-6064 for more information.

Paula, Mary & Allyson

I visited Cazenovia Artisans. This is a co-op where the artists take turns working the sales floor. Yesterday, that artist was Paula Burke. Paula is a Syracuse University graduate specializing in ceramics. She studied there under Margie Hughto and David MacDonald, among other amazing professors.

Her work is primarily focused around nature. She loves the lyrical aspect of the ginkgo leaf and utilizing glazes that have iridescent effects coupled with a matte finish.

Mary Padgett popped in – she was rearranging her display. She is selling glass mosaic pieces that shimmer in the light, as well as framed paintings of landscapes. She enjoys flipping the media, working on paintings and the three dimensional items sometimes within the same week.

The artwork is united by color – both styles work in unison and would create harmony in many home collections.

There is also a visiting artist program. Allyson Markell is this month’s featured artist. She creates colorful painted collages.

Cazenovia Artisans is located at 39 Albany Street, Cazenovia, NY 13035. Call (315) 655-2225 for more information and store hours or visit their web-site, which includes an online shopping experience.

KAC Celebrates

The Kirkland Art Center in Clinton, New York is celebrating its sixtieth year! They’ve invited artists who have had exhibitions there in the past – both founding members and recent exhibitors – to be a part of their anniversary show, which runs June 8, 2021-July 8, 2021.

The art reception was today from 1-4pm. There are forty-nine artists represented, among them, my friends Penny Santy and Linda Bigness (pictured). Most of the pieces are for sale.

The Kirkland Art Center is located at 9 1/2 East Park Row, Clinton, New York 13323.

They are open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 am to 2 pm, and on Saturdays from 1 pm to 4 pm.

Call (315) 853-8871 for more information

KAC 60 years of art exhibitors –

Stephen Arnison, Constance Avery, John Bentham, Linda Bigness, Jan Burke, Howard Chaney, Edward Christiana, Karen Christiansen, Robert Cimbalo, Frank Cittadino, Sally Clark, Sylvia de Swaan, Barbara Decker, Laura Diddle, Sebastian Domenico, Kathy Donovan, Charlie Fisher, Jan Fisher, John Gardner, Frank Jacobs, Pinny Kuckel, Jessie Landecker, Gregory Lawler, Mary Gaylord Loy, John Loy, Jim McDermid, Roger Moore, Ralph Murray, Gina Murtaugh, Stephen Perrone, Vartan Poghosian, Easton Pribble, Tim Rand, Marietta Raposo,Bill Salzillo, Penny Santy, Stella Scarano, Alba Scott, Sheila Smith,Gail Strout, Joseph Trovato, Frank Viola, Frank Vlossak, Heidi von Bergen, John von Bergen, Shirley B. Waters, Rainer Maria Wehner, Doug Whitfield, Jonathan Woodward

Reconfiguration

The Everson Museum of Art is open! I mean, it’s been open – I just didn’t know it. I was able to catch the tail end of the Lacey McKinney show, Reconfiguration. The Everson Bulletin states the show’s run ended on the 24th so…lucky me and my friend Penny.

*The show has now been extended to February 28, 2021 so…lucky you!

I love the discourse between Penny Santy and me when we see exhibitions together. We don’t always like the same pieces but we understand each other’s point of view.

McKinney’s paintings are oil and acrylic. I suspect the acrylic was either a means to create texture or the underlying Frankenthaler-esque washes in some of the female populated landscapes.

Penny loved these new-technique-for-the-artist “cyanotypes” (above) but they reminded me of a crafty high school art project – female body parts minus vagina, lol, that is too mean, sorry Lacey, but, I felt like these were a bit too safe and they read more like studies than finished pieces. I did admire the size relationships though. And in person, the blue hues are lovely and more nuanced than the photograph suggests.

The larger portrait/landscape mash-ups were far more interesting to me. They offered visual collage in a successful way – female as mountain, eyes averted so as not to become a focal point – they had an ethereal beauty to them. She is quite proficient in the rendering of the subject matter, as well as holding a cerebral allocation of the structure of her iconography.

These two (above) were my favorites. I loved the softness of the colorations and the rhythm in the compositions. They whisper emotion in a powerful feminine way with subtle colorations of glaze-infused shadow. Perfection!

This piece (above) reminded me of Marilyn Monroe, but that may be because I had just watched a documentary on Arthur Miller, ex-husband of MM, and one on the fashion designer Dries Van Noten, Belgium fashion designer who created a line of menswear with a variety of images of MM silk-screened on jackets and shirts.

The literature states that the artist selected images from magazines and reconfigured them stealing fragments of different women juxtaposed as either friend or foe. So, maybe?

This collection is on view in the Robineau gallery on the first floor of the museum. I believe there were only about five other people in the entire museum today when we visited. Plenty of social distancing room to ruminate on this new work. Call (315) 474-6064 for more information.

EVERSON MUSEUM OF ART HOURS:

SUNDAY 12-5
MONDAY CLOSED
TUESDAY CLOSED
WEDNESDAY CLOSED
THURSDAY 12-5 (12-8 EVERY 3RD THURS)
FRIDAY 12-5
SATURDAY 10-5

quilts x infinity

Kerri Green, Dallas, TX, Eyes On You, 2020, Cotton fabric hand-dyed by the artist, and cotton batting, $2,500
Diana Fox, Ellen Blalock, Judy Kirpich

The Quilts = Art = Quilts exhibition at the Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center is up until January 10, 2021, so you have plenty of time to see it. It is only the second installation since the mandatory Covid-19 shutdowns. The Made in New York show was their toe-in-water – they have upped their safety and security measures to include weekend visits.

Margaret Abramshe, Shinhee Chin
Victoria Findlay Wolfe, New York, NY, A Year of Moments, 2018, Fiber, quilt, $15,000

Not sure if a lot of people know the museum is open. It is – and it is BEAUTIFUL. A wonderful experience, especially when you practically have the place to yourself and you can enjoy that intimate discovery of art elements – line, shape, color, texture and size, while appearing incognito.

#coach #marcjacobs #kesnyc #theory #joesjeans #calvinklein
Debbie Grifka, Ann Arbor, MI, Notre Dame, 2019, Textile, $8,500
Jeanne Hewell-Chambers, Cashiers, NC, Playground of Her Soul, 2018, Fabric, batting, embroidery floss, and discarded dress, $3,800

Only some of these quilts are standard sizes – the rest are meant as wall decoration. Iconography runs the gamut from portraits and landscapes to the abstract. Traditional quilting techniques offer a stepping stone to what is and what can be.

This is a juried exhibition cultivated from a nationwide call for entries. Seventy-one quilts were selected.

Susan Lapham, Vienna, VA, Playland #2, 2020, Pieced, hand-dyed cotton, and machine quilted, $8,000

*from the SMAC website

Jurors

Valerie S. Goodwin is a mixed media fiber artist and architect whose works of fine art are included in museum and private collections. Most of her work is inspired by a love of aerial views of landscapes and cities. Many of her quilts are based on maps.

Goodwin’s art has moved through various stages from traditional quilting to an interest in abstract expressionism and, currently it is inspired by real and imaginary landscapes and cities. In some cases, her work shows an architectural sense of space with an archaeological perspective. In others, the network of the city and its built form is more prominent. These compositions work on several levels, from close up and far away as if one was looking at it from above.

She received degrees in architecture from Washington University and Yale University. Her award-winning work has been widely published and exhibited. She also lectures and gives workshops nationally and internationally. Currently she teaches architectural design at Florida A&M University.

Fiber artist Mary Lou Alexander’s two great passions are art and nature. She grew up in Northeast Ohio playing along the streams and paths of a nearby forest, drawing, and stitching together fabric scraps in her Godmother’s sewing room. She studied art and art history in college, but spent much of her adult life as a biologist, examining the ecology and reproductive behavior of small South American monkeys. She earned a PhD from Kent State University in Biological Anthropology, and holds an international Diploma from the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew in London. She taught at Northeastern Ohio College of Medicine and in the Department of Biological Sciences at Kent State University.

In mid-career she resigned her tenured professorship to return to art and stitching full time. Over the year she had mounted 5 solo exhibitions in museums and galleries, and she has been represented in many juried exhibitions in the US and Europe including Artist as Quiltmaker, Quilt National, Quilts=Art=Quilts, Best of Ohio, Form Not Function, Focus Fiber, and others. Her work was invited to be included in Color Improvisations, which toured Europe in 2010 through 2013 in the Inaugural Exhibition at Edison Price Gallery in New York City and Material Pulses, which is touring the Us through 2023. Her quilts are part of many private and public collections including Marbaum Collection at the San Joe Museum of Quilts and Textiles. She has curated several exhibitions for the Butler Institute of American Art and written reviews for Fiber Arts Magazine. Natural phenomena remain a major inspiration for her work.

Carolyn Skei, Karen Schulz

The exhibiting artists are as follows:

Margaret Abramshe, Geneviève Attinger, Bobbi Baugh, Deb Berkebile, Margaret Black, Ellen Blalock, Holly Brackmann, Peggy Brown, Betty Busby, Libby Cerullo, Shinhee  Chin, Gregory Climer, Tyrus Clutter, Holly Cole, Shannon Conley, Petra Fallaux, Victoria Findlay Wolfe, Diana Fox, Kerri Green, Debbie Grifka, Carol Grotrian, Betty Hahn, Barbara Oliver Hartman, Jeanne Hewell-Chambers, Virginia Holloway, Judy Hooworth, Beth Porter Johnson, Noel Keith, Natalya Khorover, Judy Kirpich, Elke Klein, Karen Krieger, Denise Labadie, Judy Langille, Susan Lapham, Niraja Lorenz, Valerie Maser-Flanagan, Alicia Merrett, Kestrel Michaud, Susie Monday, Kathy Nida, Frauke Palmer, Julia Pfaff, Heather Pregger, Wen Redmond, Denise Roberts, Irene Roderick, Barbara Schulman, Karen Schulz, Candace Hackett Shively, Carolyn Skei, Brenda Gael Smith, Gerri Spilka, Lee Sproul, Victoria van der Laan, Cynthia Vogt

Candace Hackett Shively, Libby Cerullo

The Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center is located at 205 Genesee Street, Auburn, New York 13021. They are open Tuesdays-Saturdays from 10AM – 5PM and Sundays from 1PM – 5PM. Call (315) 255-1553 for more information or email at mail@schweinfurthartcenter.org.

Ann Clarke @ smac

Ann Clarke, Syracuse, NY, Self Portrait 2020, wool yarn

I drove to the Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center in Auburn, New York (205 Genesee Street) to view the Quilt=Art=Quilts show (blog post to follow). This fabulous show of textiles (or as she calls them – rugs) is by Ann Clarke and is located in the upstairs gallery through January 19, 2021.

It was only my second time up there due to the fact that previously, I did not know there was more than met the eye to the museum – there is a second floor accessed via stairs or elevator hidden behind the gallery shoppe and a basement room as well, where the museum hosts art classes and activities.

Ann Clarke, Syracuse, NY, Insomnia, 2020, knitted and fulled wool
Ann Clarke, Syracuse, NY, Noah, 2018, wool yarn

Clarke’s show is more than meets the eye too. It is full of eyes – the hooked wool rug variety. Although this technique was introduced to me in the 1970s as craft, Clarke’s deft handling of the media allows for nuances of color that create a feeling of light flickering throughout, which reminds one of time passing. She has elevated this former stitch-by-numbers-style craft into legitimate art.

The show is titled Lessons of Empathy in Wonderland. Clarke shares a journey of self as artist, and care-giver to her elderly mother. It reads as catharsis. She is literally and figuratively weaving the fragility of life and its complex relationships with love-infused yarn. This journey into an alternate universe (where the family narratives have changed) seems to have inspired empathy for her relationship with family in addition to finding personal solace, strength and depth of character within each intricately detailed piece in this collection.

It is a breathtaking exhibition. All of this large-scale work has been completed in the last two years. It is all so uniquely personal and yet, so compelling as one feels the resonance.

I love how life shows you what to do, what to create based on where you are on the emotional scale. And wherever you are, there will be others who totally see you. <3

Water is Art

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.

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photo cred – Jocelyn Reynolds

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.

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photo cred – Shane Lavelette

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.

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graphic design – Im Burrow

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.

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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

Weighlock Gallery

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.

*Details from Facebook event page

Join artist Linda Zhang and Syracuse University Professor Biko Gray at 1 p.m. Saturday, April 18 for a live, online talk about ‘The Story of Water,” an exhibit of abstract art that is at the Erie Canal Museum. It will be hosted on the Zoom meeting app. Click on this link to register and you will receive an email confirmation: .https://ryerson.zoom.us/meeting/register/u50vcuGsqTwsjUGXxhFl1-DgYZPFHN2lzA.

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!

Umbrella Man

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photo cred – Jeff Heim

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?

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Answer:  plant umbrellas.

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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.

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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.

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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).

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photo cred – Lisa Richards Kane

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.

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photo cred – Lisa Richards Kane

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.

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photo cred – Lisa Richards Kane

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

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photo cred – Benjamin Terry

***all other photographs not tagged are used with permission courtesy of the artist