With recent tragedies, horrors and stories of hate and divisiveness, it is all the more important for us to share our perspectives, with whatever tools we have. As we know, art is a powerful way to start dialogue, to overcome language and cultural barriers.
At our Democracy show opening, a Turkish man came up to me to talk about the show. He was visiting his daughter in NYC, or more accurately, he was spending as much time in NYC as visa regulations allowed, escaping his beloved country due to the increasing fear and the loss of rights and democracy there. He was not an artist, but, that evening, he wanted to be in a place where democracy was being discussed, to be comforted that there are still safe venues to talk about concerns, about what is right and what is left, or remaining, of civil rights, human rights, dialogue. That brief conversation is why Karen and I do what we do with Gutfreund Cornett Art... creating opportunities for artists to start and add to conversations, to engage others to think more deeply about issues, to create community.
What's Right, What's Left: Democracy in America
Phoenix Gallery, Chelsea, NYC
January 6-30, 2016
Curators: Sherri Cornett and Kren Gutfreund, Gutfreund Cornett Art
Juror: Dr. Kathy Battista, Founder and Director of the MA Contemporary Art program at Sotheby's Institute of Art, New York
Artists with works in the gallery:
Nic Abramson, Ransom Ashley, Michael D'Antuono, Cat Del Buono, Justyne Fischer, Lindsay Garcia, Shawna Gibbs, Ruthann Godollei, Ingrid Goldbloom Bloch, Emily Greenberg,Gracie Guerrero-Bustini, Shreepad Joglekar, Sinan Revell, Monika Malewska, Victoria Helena Mihatovic, Kate Negri, Gina Randazzo, Nick Schmidt, Laura Sussman-Randall, Dan Tague, and Eike Waltz.
In order to accommodate as many viewpoints as possible and expand the conversation beyond the physical limitations of the museum, additional works were selected to be shown in a looped slideshow in the gallery:
Gary Aagaard, Linda Andrei, Jay Burton, Jane Caminos, Michael Carlebach, Michael D'Antuono, Sarah Dillon, Sally Edelstein, Johnny Everyman, Michael Fischerkeller, Colleen Gahrmann, Christine Giancola, Ruthann Godollei, Ingrid Goldbloom Bloch, Maeve Grogan, Gracie Guerrero-Bustini, Sheila Halligan-Waltz, Lidia Hasenauer, Chris Hopkins, Shreepad Joglekar, Debbie Johnston,Yuri Kadamov, Marky Kauffmann, Glenn Lieberman, Billi London-Gray, Monika Malewska, Penny Mateer, Carol-Anne McFarlane, Dawn Nakashima, John Nieman, Maxine Olson, Kate Patsch, Sinan Revell, Bridget Rountree, Amy Siqveland, E. F. Stilwell Brechtel, Nette Thomas, Prince Thomas, Robert Thurlow, Margi Weir, Zachary Williams and Youxin Yang.
This exhibition highlighted the work of the New York City Poet Laureate Program and Vote Smart.
The New York City YOUTH POET LAUREATE (YPL) program is a voting-themed teen competition designed to energize youth voters through spoken word poetry. The program is open to students, ages 16-19. The Youth Poet Laureate for each year and the Youth Poet Ambassadors (finalists in the program) travel the five boroughs, NYC High Schools and parks to speak to their peers about voting and civic engagement.
On Twitter: @NYCYPL
On Facebook: NYCYouthPoetLaureate
VOTE SMART: Begun in 1986 by a combination of conservatives and liberals, "this project is an historic undertaking. Citizens come together, not in selfish interest or to support one candidate over another, but to defend democracy. It is an extraordinary gathering of people committed to one purpose: to strengthen the most essential component of democracy -- access to information -- even as it suffers grave attacks from candidates and political parties, many who are now willing to manipulate information and deceive voters." To do this, they have created the Voter's Self-Defense System, where every candidate and elected official from President to local government can be easily and instantly accessed - their voting records, issue positions, interest group ratings, public statements and campaign finances.
A place to decant my brain, to capture inspiration and share fresh insights. [Posts from 2015 onward]