KCAD Community Shines in ArtPrize Jurors’ Shortlist Reveal
*EDITOR'S NOTE: Article updated on 10/1/15*
If you’re wondering just how far the impact of Kendall College of Art and Design of Ferris State University (KCAD) extends, look no further than the Jurors’ Shortlist for ArtPrize 2015.
The Jurors’ Shortlist showcases what is, in the eyes of the five artists, curators, and art critics that comprise ArtPrize’s panel of jurors, the cream of the crop in the seventh iteration of the radically open international art competition. Just 20 of the 1,551 entries in ArtPrize 2015 have been shortlisted, while five of the 162 venues have been nominated for the Best Venue Award, yet the connections to KCAD are abundant throughout the group of finalists.
Eight of the 20 finalist pieces, including at least one in each of ArtPrize’s four separate categories, have ties to KCAD:
“The Last Supper” by Julie Green (3D) Located at: The Fed Galleries @ KCAD
(above and below): Julie Green's "The Last Supper," inside The Fed Galleries @ KCAD
“The Last Supper” is a collection of 600 plates upon which artist Julie Green has immortalized the last meals of executed prisoners from around the United States. Green critiques the inhumanity of capital punishment and the criminal justice system by highlighting their human dimension: the inmates themselves.
“That Was Then” by Prince Thomas (Time-Based) Located at: The Fed Galleries @ KCAD
(above and below): Prince Thomas' "That Was Then," inside The Fed Galleries @ KCAD
A truly immersive experience, Prince Thomas’ “That Was Then” layers actual audio reporting of the first hours of Operation Desert Storm on CNN over footage of a 4th of July fireworks display to jarring effect.
“Fireside Chats” by Britt Spencer (2D) Located at: Craft House (40 S. Division Ave)
(above and below): Britt Spencer's series of paintings, "Fireside Chats," is on display at Craft House
Owned and operated by KCAD alumni Amanda Rainey (’14, MFA Photography), Steven Rainey (’11, MFA Printmaking), and Brandon Alman (’10, Printmaking), Craft House has dedicated its entire gallery space to an arresting collection of work by Savannah, GA-based artist Britt Spencer that questions the fundamental definition of narrative painting.
“The Sculptural Painting” by Jovanni Luna (Installation) Located at: Spiral (44 S. Division Ave)
(above and below): Jovanni Luna's "The Sculptural Painting," on display at Spiral
“The Sculptural Painting” is one of two works on display at Spiral, a gallery owned and operated by KCAD alumnus Steven Vinson (’11, MFA Painting).
“Relic” by Tamara Kostianovsky (3D) Located at: Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts (UICA)
"Relic" by Tamara Kostianovsky
“Relic,” a shockingly visceral exploration of the cyclical process of consumption and disposal by Argentinian artist Tamara Kostianovsky, is featured in the “Sense” exhibition at UICA, which merged with KCAD in 2013.
"Stripes for St. Joseph" by Nick Kline (Installation) Located at: SiTE:LAB/The Rumsey Street Project
"Stripes for St. Joseph" by Nick Kline
Kline has taken an old church and transformed it through his installation into a space that promotes questioning. The piece is a part of a sprawling and multi-faceted exhibition put on by SiTE:LAB, an organization for which KCAD alumnus Tom Clinton ('02, Printmaking) serves as exhibitions coordinator. "For the Toward" by BOOMERANG (Time-Based) Located at SiTE:LAB/The Rumsey Street Project
This installation is a part of BOOMERANG's "For the Toward" entry at SiTE:LAB
This high energy piece, also a part of SiTE:LAB's Rumsey Street Project, incorporates dance, sculpture, and performance art.
"Higher Ground" by Kate Gilmore (Time-Based) Located at SiTE:LAB/The Rumsey Street Project
"Higher Ground" by Kate Gilmore
Gilmore's performance work often includes identically dressed females doing repetitive activities. In her piece for ArtPrize 2015, also a part of SiTE:LAB's Rumsey Street Project, female participants swing on swings in front of open window, exploring the dynamics of power and the construct of femininity.
Additionally, KCAD has ties to all of the five venues that have been shortlisted for the Best Venue award: The Fed Galleries @ KCAD The Fed Galleries @ KCAD won the Best Venue Award in 2013 and was nominated again in 2014. "Sightlines,” KCAD’s ArtPrize 2015 exhibition, converges eight contemporary artists from around the world in a bold and timely examination of the often murky distinction between perception and reality. Julie Green’s “The Last Supper” and Prince Thomas’ “That Was Then” have both been named to the Jurors’ Shortlist.
The Fed Galleries @ KCAD are located inside the Woodnridge N. Ferris building (17 Pearl NW) Spiral Owned and operated by KCAD alum Steven Vinson (’11, MFA Painting), Spiral’s “Painting inFORMed” exhibition features two artists, each displaying large format wall installations. Jovanni Luna’s “The Sculptural Painting” has been named to the Jurors’ Shortlist.
Spiral is located in the Avenue for the Arts area Division Ave “Processing Fiber” at 250 Monroe Featuring 17 different fiber artists, “Processing Fiber” is the handiwork of local artist and curator Liz Hertl, who collaborated on the exhibition with KCAD Curator of Exhibitions Michele Bosak through ArtPrize’s new Fellowship for Emerging Curators initiative. KCAD was one of four venues to participate in the initiative, designed to give upstart local curators an immersive professional experience during ArtPrize 2015.
Ashley Blalock's "Keeping Up Appearances," part of the "Processing Fiber" exhibition at 250 Monroe
Urban Institute for Contemporary Art (UICA) For its ArtPrize 2015 exhibition, “Sense,” UICA features six site-responsive projects that each occupy a distinct location within UICA’s exhibition space. Tamara Kostianovsky’s “Relic” has been named to the Jurors’ Shortlist. UICA Curator Heather Duffy is a KCAD alumna (’12, MFA Painting).
"This Mortal Coil" by Heather Brammeier, part of UICA's "Sense" exhibition
SiTE:LAB/The Rumsey Street Project For ArtPrize 2015, SiTE:LAB has converted an entire city block into a pop-up arts district. A number of buildings, including a church and rectory, body shop, homes, and vacant lots provide an intriguing backdrop for the exhibition's site-specific installations. KCAD alumnus Tom Clinton ('02, Printmaking) is the exhibitions coordinator for SiTE:LAB. A number of KCAD students, staff, and faculty members were also involved in prepping the site for the exhibition and assisting with the installation of work.
Bosak says the number of finalist pieces and venues with a connection to KCAD is a direct reflection of the college’s commitment to nurturing both individual talent and community engagement.
“In everything that happens at KCAD, we strive to be an essential conduit of creativity and artistic expression: the students whose passion for making and learning enliven our campus, the alumni whose talents have made a mark on the world, the strong collaborations the college has forged throughout the creative sector, and the world-renowned artists we welcome into The Fed Galleries. ArtPrize may happen right here in Grand Rapids, but it really exists on a global stage; the artists come from all over to participate, and much of the world is watching to see what happens. To have so much success in ArtPrize that’s linked to KCAD is a testament to how deep the college’s commitment runs and how far our impact reaches.”
See the complete Jurors’ Shortlist on the ArtPrize blog.