Sunday, October 23, 2011

Etched Deep

Let's try to not make TOO big of a deal about this, but have you ever seen Sarojini Jha Johnson's artwork before? Are you familiar with the word stupendous? Or perhaps the phrase "technically jaw-dropping? Do you like narratives or color or prints or food?

You need to be at this Opening. Really you do. I say that about all of them (because they're all pretty great) but you REALLY need to be at this one. You know what else? She's doing a free lecture earlier in the afternoon at St. Ambrose that you should attend. You won't regret it. 

Here's the info: 

Who:             Sarojini Jha Johnson

What:           Prints and Books: An exhibition of etchings and books by the Indiana artist.

When and Where:         a) The Opening is Friday, October 28th  6:00 pm until 8 pm at the Bakery   Gallery conveniently located at 1330 E. 12th street Davenport, Ia 52803. The show runs from the 28th until December 3rd. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday 7:00 am - 9:00 pm

Sarojini will also be doing a (what will surely be EXTRAORDINARY)  free and open to the public lecture earlier in the day from 4:00 until 5:00 at St. Ambrose University’s Galvin Fine Art Center (Rm. 141) 

(Fox and Datura) 

A brief statement from the artist: 

My family came to the United States from India many years ago. My prints reflect my preoccupation with the knowledge of India as I experienced it through my journeys there and through stories told by my parents. Certain objects and images are persistent in my mind and emblematic or evocative of many things, from mundane to sublime. Some of these objects are plants such as datura and images of my favorite deities such as Ganesha and Lakshmi. Uprooted people often experience a longing for things that remind the of their former home. This sort of nostalgia or yearning for familiar things, especially food, has been a part of my family’s experience for as long as I can remember. My octogenarian father grows exotic vegetables with names I do not even know in English. This amuses and amazes me. I believe that the dialog about culture and nationality is vital and that the visual arts are an important forum for communication of the subtleties and variations of individual viewpoints.

Threatened and Endangered Creature Charms

The Biography:

Sarojini Jha Johnson has taught printmaking and foundations at Ball State University since 1985. She grew up in Ohio and earned undergraduate degrees in French and drawing from the University of Cincinnati. She received an MFA in printmaking from Miami University where she began working with animal and plant forms in her prints. Her work places natural forms in a fictional context. An essential theme expressed is the human desire to make time stand still in order to experience a particular moment in time. Her main medium is color intaglio printmaking, a medium that allows for great creativity and invention in terms of surface and color. Recently, she has been exploring memories and impressions of India, her country of origin. Animal images such as fish and birds still emerge in this work. 

As a side note Sarojini teaches at the school where two of us received our BFA's and was highly influential (even though I never took one of her classes) at the time. The work ethic, production and quality of the printmakers at Ball State was something to behold (and I think it still is) This is in largely due to Sarojini and her partner-in-crime David (who faithful attendees will remember from the June 2010 Bakery exhibition...see the archives) 

We're very proud to have her show at the gallery. We hope you will be too. 

Monday, October 17, 2011

RAR Rarrrrsssss... a success occurs.

 So there you have it. A great late summer opening for what we feel here is a great venue. Rebecca wowed the crowd with charm and info (and her earlier lecture) The pictures don't really do it justice (we are all aware that Mr. Lappie and a camera = mediocrity) but this was a GREAT opening for a, truthfully, great exhibition.

Let's see some pics...

The east wall is full of postcards. An ingenious way of hanging really. (not our idea)  

Like Sodom and Gomorrah one must NOT look upon the awesomeness of the west wall

Ben doing what he does and very well. People LOVE the spins

a cat's eye view. Still looks pretty good from here

Ahh.... commiseration. Such a lovely activity

Thanks to all who came out for the talk and for the opening. We, as always and forever, appreciate your support for the arts and for delicious baked goods. Until the next time (which is two weeks away : 0 )