Art Melt 2013 has come (and gone). It was quite an event, and was very well attended. I dunno, but I think it says something about a community when they will come out on sweltering, steamy, mid-July evening to see and experience some art.
Like last year's event, there were a variety of works from all over the state of Louisiana. The event was held on the grounds of the state capitol, with the art being exhibited in the State Museum. My personal picks did not receive any recognition (too bad I was not one of the Jurors), but at least they got in to the exhibition. And, if you know me, that's what I think is more important: getting your work out and seen.
I have pictures of my favorite pieces, however the lighting wasn't great for photography. Therefore, the following pictures are not very good.
My favorite piece (the one I would have given "Best in Show" was an example of book art. You might think this an obvious choice since I am a librarian in addition to an artist, but generally speaking I don't like most book arts pieces. There is a heavy print component to the book arts, and printmaking is a medium I have a love/hate relationship with. Anyway, this book was hand made and was opened from end to end. It was as if two open books were pasted together by their back covers and then left open. It was titled "A Rabbit Runs in a Circle," it features hand drawn rabbits on both "covers," text that wraps throughout the piece, and is just a delight to examine. It was by artist Frank Hamrick.
I would have given this painting "First Place." The colors are very relaxing, and they play well on an image that I find soothing. I like the contrast of the figures in the foreground, I like the use of space within the picture plane, and I just feel drawn in and warm when looking at this painting. It is by artist Connie Kittok.
These last two images aren't really favorites, they probably fall in to the "Honorable Mention" category. This image by David Humphreys combines photography and collage. I wouldn't have thought to combine these two media in the way Humphreys has, and the results are very good. This image looks like a painting, but when you look at it up close you can see that it is much more intricate in how it was created.
This painting, titled "Unrefined IX" reminds me of the work I have done with pipes. Living in Baton Rouge, one is never very far from the reminder of refineries, and it is interesting to see these pipes, stacks, behemoths of industrialization depicted as something elegant. This painting is by Ian Chrystal.
The evening wasn't just about visual art. There were street performers, belly dancers and bands as well. The band I most liked was Minos the Saint. They played a fun type of Cajun/pop that got people dancing and was a lot of fun to listen to. I'll close with a picture of their performance.