Monday, January 10, 2005

Another GRACE Director bites the dust

Edie McRee Bowles, President and CEO of the Greater Reston Arts Center, has been fired by the Board of Directors.

Former Fairfax County Board of Supervisor, Kate Hanley, has been named interim director of GRACE.

I think the world about GRACE, which is a cultural jewel in that wealthy suburb, and I have curated a show for them, and their Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival hosted 180 artists and attracted over 60,000 visitors last year, and it is one of the best fine arts festivals in the nation (I am participating in the 2005 version next May).

But there's something wrong at GRACE, or maybe within its Board of Directors (I don't know), as this is their fourth director since Anne Brown was released in August of 2002. That's a clear indication that someone or something (besides the directors) is/are doing something wrong.

It has nothing to do with the visual arts, but...

Congrats to DC area Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Lorraine Adams, whose book Harbor, was rated Fiction Book of the Year in the Entertainment Weekly Best of 2004 issue.

Bravo Ms. Adams!

Opportunity for Artists

Hispanic Heritage Poster Contest
Deadline: February 11, 2005

Washington DC, Maryland and Virginia artists throughout the metropolitan area now have the opportunity to compete for the $2,500 grand prize of the First Annual VEGA Hispanic Yellow Pages Poster Contest sponsored by the VEGA Hispanic Yellow Pages, DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities and The Mayor’s Office on Latino Affairs. The deadline is February 11, 2005.

The poster theme should be the artist’s interpretation or rendition of Hispanic Heritage in the Greater Washington DC Metropolitan Area.

The winning poster will be featured on the front cover of the VEGA Hispanic Yellow Pages. The design may also be used for other promotional items such as billboards, T-shirts, programs, etc. Only one work may be submitted per artist.

For more information contact Jose Dominguez at (202) 724-5614 or email Jose here. You can also download the prospectus here.

Artists need not be Hispanic/Latino/Latins/Spanish/Latin-American/Spaniards/Iberians in order to submit entries (I hope).

Critical Alignment II

In response to my thoughts on Critical Alignment, a friend emailed me a very interesting essay by Dave Eggers (co-founder of the now-defunct Might Magazine and editor of McSweeney's, and author of "A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius").

It is too long to post in its entirety here, but the essence of it can be beautifully distilled to:

"What matters is that you do good work. What matters is that you produce things that are true and will stand. What matters is that the Flaming Lips's new album is ravishing and I've listened to it a thousand times already, sometimes for days on end, and it enriches me and makes me want to save people. What matters is that it will stand forever, long after any narrow-hearted curmudgeons have forgotten their appearance on goddamn 90210.

What matters is not the perception, nor the fashion, not who's up and who's down, but what someone has done and if they meant it. What matters is that you want to see and make and do, on as grand a scale as you want, regardless of what the tiny voices of tiny people say.

Do not be critics, you people, I beg you. I was a critic and I wish I could take it all back because it came from a smelly and ignorant place in me, and spoke with a voice that was all rage and envy. Do not dismiss a book until you have written one, and do not dismiss a movie until you have made one, and do not dismiss a person until you have met them. It is a fuckload of work to be open-minded and generous and understanding and forgiving and accepting, but Christ, that is what matters. What matters is saying yes."
Bravo Mr. Eggers!

DCist has a nice write-up of the new AOM artists show that opened last weekend at the Anne C. Fisher Gallery in Georgetown.

This is the first of a triple gallery show about AOM artists. Next Friday we will open most of the artists from our lists with a show opening Friday, October 14 from 6-9PM at Fraser Bethesda, and the Friday after that opening at Fraser Georgetown.

And wait until you see the installation that Ira Tattelman has done in our Bethesda gallery!