Saturday, November 24, 2012

Sustaining/Creating: A National Juried Exhibition for Emerging Artists with Disabilities, Ages 16-25

Where: Ripley Center

When: through January 13, 2013

This is the 11th exhibition of the winners in this contest for young artists with disabilities; I've seen it twice before.  It's very interesting to see artists in the beginning of their careers - you can appreciate what you're seeing now, and keep an eye out for them to see what they'll create in the future.  I guess you could compare it to buying a baseball player's rookie card.

The theme of this year's exhibit is sustainability and contemporary creativity.  The artists were asked to bring innovative viewpoints to these subjects.  I confess, if I'd been asked to create a work of art with this as my theme, I would have been stumped.  Luckily for we museum goers, these young people have risen to the occasion.  One of the pieces that caught my eye was Copper 2 by Jacob Brown (he's 20 and suffers from spastic cerebral palsy).  It's an abstract (bet you didn't see that coming - me, liking an abstract!) that features great greens and blues with copper accents.  Another of my favorites was Restoring the Sublime by Leland Foster (he's 21 and has Crohn's Disease).  It's a painting of a boy painting a forest scene over a concrete wall.  There's something Norman Rockwell-esque about it, which one doesn't expect from a young artist.

Verdict: Don't miss this small show - it's in the corridor leading to the International Gallery.  Very manageable in a lunch hour and a great way to see what young artists are doing.

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