Sunday, June 30, 2013

Solo Exhibit in Albany, NY

“The Pump Collection:  21st Century” and

Selections from the “Barnwood Quilt”

The Rugged and the Fabulous

James Thatcher, of Cobleskill, NY will be displaying rugged constructions and colorful paintings at the Alacrity Frame Workshop and Gallery, 215 Lark Street in downtown Albany, NY.  The exhibit opens Friday evening, July 5th as part of Albany’s “First Friday” arts and culture event, and will continue to Tuesday, July 30th, 2013.

Mr. Thatcher moved to upstate New York from North Carolina in 2011.  His art career spans over three decades, with solo exhibits in many galleries and regional art centers including the Washington Project for the Arts in Washington, DC.  His work has been featured in numerous group shows including the Corcoran Museum of Art in Washington, DC, the Devos Art Museum in Marquette, MI, and the Budapest Academy of Fine Arts in Budapest, Hungary.

 Mr. Thatcher has also manufactured and marketed high end furniture in Washington, DC and has his woodwork in prestigious collections worldwide, including those of news personality Paula Zahn, former U.S. President Bill Clinton, and late Chinese Premier Deng Xiaoping, among many others.

The paintings at Alacrity Frame Workshop and Gallery draw from Thatcher’s experience as a graffiti artist.  He spread his iconic symbol of “A Classic Evening Pump” throughout Washington, DC in the early 80’s. 
Revisiting the subject matter 30 years later on a more domestic scale  (11” x 14” framed), Thatcher uses spray paint on primed paper, rendering various styles of fashionable and fabulous footwear.

“The Barnwood Quilt” is an ongoing series of constructions made from weathered wood.  Thatcher assembles a central square and then frames it in longer strips of the rustic material.  The seams of all the mitered corners line up when multiple squares are mounted together, creating lines that span entire walls from piece to piece. 

“These two series are visually very different, but are symbolic of male and female,” Thatcher said.  “Tension and drama exist in their coming together.”  He continued, “The social metaphor of this display is a newly discovered surprise; but these two groups of work share a formal interest in materials and processes”

James Thatcher graduated from the Corcoran College of Art and Design, Washington, DC in 1984; beginning his post-secondary education at the Columbus College of Art and Design, Columbus, OH.

Monday, June 10, 2013

New Vision for Salisbury, MD!

I just learned today that my proposal for “The New Vision Heron Mural” for Salisbury, MD was accepted by United States Artist Projects for display on their website,!  The painting (12' high x 30' tall) will require a minimum of $5,800 dollars to produce; and this means that I have the opportunity to receive funding pledges; not just in the area where the mural is located, but with web-wide exposure for the project.  It's an opportunity for individuals to personally donate any amount from $1 up to $10,000!

Below is the first version of the New Vision, which was submitted for consideration to the Salisbury, MD Downtown Historic District during their May meeting.  At that meeting, Ms. Lee Whaley, Co-Founder of the Salisbury Arts and Entertainment District initiative, reported to me “Our presentation on the mural was positively received by all attending the hearing. Those in the audience liked the design and vibrant new colors….”
"After some discussion, the (conservative) historic commission voted favorably but they felt the colors were “too trendy and not in sync with the surrounding properties.” They voted to accept a configuration of the four herons.…”  Ms. Whaley continued, ”They are asking that the colors be limited to blue and green, the thought being that while we are located in an emerging urban city with a new, lively arts focus, they would like to see the mural reflect the colors of nature – the blue heron, sky, adjacent Wicomico River and city green space.
That is a great rationale for a color scheme!  I dove right in and worked through several iterations, and submitted this as a final draft: 
Ms. Whaley and I discussed some funding options and I took a little tour online for "Funding Art Projects" which led me to USA Projects.  The site made it all sound so easy!  I started to create my proposal--all went well, except that I had to make a promotional video for the project!  Never did anything like that before!  I free-styled it, as you can tell; but just began speaking about the various aspects of the project...tough at first, but after about ten takes, I had the first 15 seconds figured out!  On to the next aspects of the proposal until, a couple hours later...:
So, HERE WE GO!  This promises to be an interesting process--it already is!  Stay tuned for updates, you can click "Follow" on the New Vision Heron Mural project page:
Take note of the perks available for certain levels of contribution, from custom note cards, process artworks and limited edition postage stamps reminiscent of the classic "Duck Stamp"!  Fun stuff for your personal collection, and very unique!
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