- The first in a series of exhibitions exploring silence and the power it has in shaping who we are and how we relate to the world.
Thursday, April 26, 5:30-7:30pm.
Art on Purpose, a Baltimore-based non-profit organization that uses art to bring people together around issues and ideas, presents Speaking of Silence I, the first in a series of exhibitions on silence to be continued through the 2007-08 exhibition season. Speaking of Silence I will be on view at Sub-Basement Artist Studios April 26 through June 2, 2007, with an opening reception Thursday, April 26, 5:30-7:30.
The show features an extraordinary array of works by youth, sound & visual artists, and others. Highlights are:
- Youth & Silence, by Beth Barbush and Yutaka Houlette.
- Paintings by Jo Smail and Claudia Mcdonough
- Aggregates, a sound installation by Melissa Moore
- Notes on Silence, by Andrew Shenker
- Art by students attending Learning Inc. and their instructor, Larry Scott.
Featured in the exhibit is Art on Purpose’s Youth & Silence, the first photo and audio narrative piece from an ongoing Addressing Silence project that will be fully developed over the next year by Art on Purpose. Photographer and Art on Purpose’s Community Outreach Coordinator Beth Barbush has been collecting dozens of recordings of people discussing silence and its impact on their lives. She and sound editor Yutaka Houlette present youth voices collaged together on the theme of education, family, and the difficulties of communication. Accompanying the sound are photographs of the youth by Beth Barbush.
Jo Smail’s body of work in Speaking of Silence I was created within two years of her experiencing a stroke several years ago and losing the ability to speak (she since has regained her power of speech). Her paintings, surrogates for talking, explore the relationship between silence and speech.
Claudia McDonough exhibits paintings seeking to give form to an essence that paradoxically refuses form. Her subject matter might be compared with a Black Hole: it can be inferred by an opening of space rather than direct observation. It remains silent.
Melissa Moore, a Baltimore-area sound artist, presents Aggregates, a sound installation composed of field recordings collected from below, above, and inside the spaces of the city's infrastructure. Moore frequently performs at the Red Room and has been featured at the annual High Zero Festival.
Andrew Shenker, an artist and philosopher with a unique and inter-woven take on silence, presents Notes on Silence, a series of sketches and notations based on a close listening of
Art on Purpose’s ongoing series of Addressing Silence interviews.
To complete the show, an entire wall is dedicated to paintings by youth attending Learning Inc., an alternative middle school for high school-aged children. Artist and Art on Purpose instructor Larry Scott, whose drawn portraits of Learning Inc. youth will be shown alongside his student’s art, has worked all year with Learning Inc., developing the students’ art skills and ability to express through art what otherwise would remain unexpressed.
A series of programs will take place during the course of the exhibition, including the Opening Reception & Gallery Conversation on Thursday, April 26, 5:30-7:30. Discussion will focus on Learning Inc. students and other youth voices represented in the exhibition. The evening will include a preview screening of other Art on Purpose Addressing Silence projects in the works. Other public programming during the exhibition will be:
- Silence & Spiritual Practice on Thursday, May 10, 5:30-7:00pm at Homewood Friends Meeting, 3107 N. Charles Street, Baltimore. Art on Purpose and the Baltimore Lyceum moderate a discussion on the question: "What does silence do for the spirit?"
- Evening of Silence in Music on Thursday, May 24. Part One will take place 5:30 to 6:30pm at The Contemporary Museum, 100 W. Centre Street, Baltimore with a reception & viewing of Joseph Grigely: St. Cecilia, featuring the Chamber Choir of the Baltimore Choral Arts Society. Part Two continues 7:00 to 8:00pm eight blocks away at Sub-Basement Artist Studios with a concert by percussionist Tom Goldstein of works by John Cage, Toshi Ichiyanagi, Tom DeLio, and others that make extensive use of silence. Guests Gina Braden and the UMBC Percussion Ensemble.
- “Going Under” - Silent Film & Live Performance takes place Saturday, June 2, 7:00 to 9:00pm at Sub-Basement Artist Studios. The evening features screenings of contemporary silent films selected by Gina Braden interspersed with live performances by the actress/artist on the theme of Waiting, Isolation, and Silence.
All events have been generously sponsored by the Cohen Opportunity Fund and are free and open to the public.