Category Archives: News

Festival of Lights in Clifton Springs, 2014

For this year’s Festival of Lights, Main Street Arts had two artistsZach Dietl and John Rugglescarving 300 pound blocks of ice outside of the gallery.

Artists Zach Dietl and John Ruggles beginning to carve the 300 pound blocks of ice.

Artists Zach Dietl and John Ruggles beginning to carve the 300 pound blocks of ice.

The artists did a great job carving their individual blocks, with John creating an ice octopus and Zach carving a beautiful holiday wreath.

John Ruggles and his octopus ice carving

John Ruggles and his octopus ice carving

Zach Dietl and his ice carving of a holiday wreath

Zach Dietl and his ice carving of a holiday wreath

John Ruggles and Zach Dietl are also exhibiting artists in our Small Works exhibition. Drop by the gallery before year’s end to see Zach’s cast iron groundhog, or John’s Pacman paintings on gold leafed panels.

See more of John Ruggles’ artwork here. You can see more of Zach Dietl’s artwork here.

A Studio Visit with Sarah Sutton

Sarah Sutton studio visit

“This process of translation creates a loss, distortion and fracture, yet the scrambled image becomes a field of possibilities-cultural hallucinations, and open-ended associations; a kind of visual ‘backmasking’.” — Sarah Sutton


This coming September and October, Main Street Arts will be showing an exhibition of abstract painting and photography called, The Opposite of Concrete. It will feature five artists, each with their own approach to making abstract imagery. The artists featured are: Carl Chiarenza, Karen Sardisco, Sarah Sutton, Patricia Wilder, and Bradley Butler (myself, gallery director).

Sarah Sutton studio visit

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of taking a trip to Ithaca to do a studio visit with Sarah Sutton, one of the painters in the show. You can see a glimpse of some of the work in progress to be included in this exciting upcoming exhibition.

Sarah Sutton studio visit

Watch for Sarah’s Inside The Artist’s Studio posts in the coming weeks to get some insight into her work. Until then, enjoy these images from her studio…

Sarah Sutton studio visit

Inside the Artist’s Studio with Peter Pincus: Centerpiece

If Sleep, In Spite of the Storm is an exhibition about the intimate relationship, then the two large crematory urns in the middle of the space serve as principal anchors.  This post is about their story.

Peter Pincus' upcoming exhibition, "Sleep, In Spite of the Storm"

The urns installed and photographed in the gallery before any other work was made.

Before any other work was made for this show, I carefully researched, blueprinted, scaled, fabricated, finished, and photographed them in the gallery.  Excessive, right?  Not at all!  They are vessels of spirit that, just like the hand mirror, have a reflective quality for the viewer.  Done right, they oscillate between container, painting, and figure sculpture.  What a job they have.

I intended them to be independent and dependent at the same time.  It started with the form, which took from Sevres Porcelain the idea of symmetric, tight, articulate profile, but stripped the surface of the type of glamorous opulence that defines Sevres.  Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with opulence!  But it would be distracting in this particular vessel.

Photograph taken from http://www.liveauctioneers.com/item/13368797_pair-sevres-style-25-porcelain-cobalt-urns

Photograph taken from http://www.liveauctioneers.com/item/13368797_pair-sevres-style-25-porcelain-cobalt-urns

I designed the forms and lid system and built them in five separate molds.  Having never made such a large slip-cast vessel before, I planned to fire each section separately and then glue the pieces together at the end.  I couldn’t help myself though, I had to cast one in white and see it.  My wife patiently held the sections together at 6am so I could snap an Instagram photo.

The urn in early morning white.

The urn in early morning white.

I planned to have their surfaces reference Josef Albers, whose theories on color routinely find their way into my work.  I cast one urn in white and the other in black, and composed identical gradients of vertical stripes from white to black on their bellies, leaving a gray rectangle centered on the white and black stripe of each piece.  This is a carbon copy of chapter IV from Albers’ Interaction of Color, “A color has many faces—the relativity of color.”

Not the greatest example, but you get the point.  Taken from http://joshsmilingskull.wordpress.com/2011/04/01/albers-exercises/

Not the greatest example, but you get the point. Taken from http://joshsmilingskull.wordpress.com/2011/04/01/albers-exercises/

Urns in  process.

Urns in process.

When installed, the stripes are turned opposite each other, forcing the gray rectangles to show different faces; lighter on black and darker on white.  Thus the appearance of independence. But, if you separate them the phenomenon doesn’t work. So, they become very dependent on each other to maintain their individuality.

An alternate view of the urns in the exhibition

An alternate view of the urns in the exhibition

An alternate view of the urns in the exhibition

Part One: Inside the Artist’s Studio: Introducing Peter Pincus
Part Two: Inside the Artist’s Studio with Peter Pincus: How Long is a Long Time?
Part Four: Inside the Artist’s Studio with Peter Pincus: Cracks in the Foundation

Inside the Artist’s Studio with Peter Pincus: How Long is a Long Time?

Among the pots and vessels featured in Sleep, In Spite of the Storm, you will find a perfume bottle standing on top of a hand mirror.  In my (very) biased opinion, these two are the most complex and compelling objects in this show.  And they better be, because I’ve been working on them for a long time.

Perfume Bottle and Hand Mirror.  2014

Perfume Bottle and Hand Mirror. 2014

It all started when I paired perfume bottles and jewelry boxes for my graduate thesis exhibition in 2011.  I thought the perfume bottle could become an abstracted figure, and the jewelry box could become a landscape, and that together they could create a seductive atmosphere.  In theory it was great, but I left that body of work feeling  underwhelmed.

Perfume Bottle and Jewelry Box from Thesis Exhibition, 2011.

Perfume Bottle and Jewelry Box from Thesis Exhibition, 2011.

For starters, the perfume bottle as an abstract figure was a forced idea, if an idea at all.  I couldn’t get far enough away from the wheel to make it transcend the pot.  And by stacking the bottle on the box, I changed the way the jewelry box worked.  It stopped being a container and turned into a pedestal.  Neither object heightened the other.  The two were not a great match.

Another Perfume Bottle and Jewelry Box from Thesis Exhibition, 2011.

Another Perfume Bottle and Jewelry Box from Thesis Exhibition, 2011.

So I spent time sketching the perfume bottle by itself as a way to gain distance from the relationship I’d forced.   I also restricted myself from actually making a perfume bottle because I knew it was important to grow in my hand and mind first to avoid retracing my steps.  I spent the time looking at dresses and figures and paintings, while I made a ton of bottles and cups – of course!

When I finally made the right sketch, the challenge was figuring out how to make the thing.  What a pain!  If you are interested in how I did it, go back to my early Instagram posts where I documented the process step by step (most steps are there).

 

Peter Pincus and his ceramics

Peter Pincus and his ceramics

The hand mirror came to mind in its own time.  It was the first thing I could think of that conceptually aligned with the perfume bottle, was found in a similar location and completely heightened the bottle while not turning into a pedestal in the process.  To boot, it was an exceptionally undervalued object.  Opportunity… check!

But here’s the catch.  Slip casting a hand mirror doesn’t work.  Believe me, I tried… and tried and tried.  It took time to realize that the hand mirror was best suited as a wheel turned object.  So I found rich, dark chocolate, dense earthenware and had at it.

Scraping a finished edge of the hand mirror before drying and firing it.

Scraping a finished edge of the hand mirror before drying and firing it.

So here they are.  Three years from when I last made a perfume bottle.  Finally.

Detail

Detail

Part One: Inside the Artist’s Studio: Introducing Peter Pincus
Part Three: Inside the Artist’s Studio with Peter Pincus: Centerpiece
Part Four: Inside the Artist’s Studio with Peter Pincus: Cracks in the Foundation

Sulphur Springs Festival Artists

This weekend at Main Street Arts we celebrated the 2014 Sulphur Springs Festival. As part of the festival a number of artists spread throughout Clifton Springs, working from the beautiful town scenery. But don’t worry if you missed the festival! We interviewed the artists so you can enjoy their work here and elsewhere online.

Seven members of the Rochester Sketch group came in for the day, working in watercolor, pen & ink, and more.  They quickly went to work, sketching cars and landscapes and sharing their work with festival visitors.

Members of the Rochester Sketch Group

Members of the Rochester Sketch Group

The Rochester Sketch group is for people who like to draw, sketch, or doodle, who want to sketch together and share their sketches with others. We were lucky enough to speak with a few of them about their artwork and sketching experiences.

Andy Reddout is an art teacher who likes sketching people, buildings, and more (today he created a gorgeous watercolor of a car).  See more of his work at reddoutart.tumblr.com

Andy Reddout

Andy Reddout

Andy Reddout's Watercolor Sketch

Andy Reddout’s Watercolor Sketch

Genine Carvalheira-Gehman loves sketching in pen & ink and watercolor, and loves working from life. Genine thinks the fact that several people sketching the same object can produce such a variety of images is fascinating. She has been sketching for the past five years. You can see more of Genine’s work at broadhurststreet.blogspot.com

Genine Carvalheira-Gehman

Genine Carvalheira-Gehman

Anthony “Mecha” likes to sketch a lot of different things and has recently been trying more life drawing. He’s been sketching on and off since he was twelve years old. You can see more of Mecha’s drawings at http://ghost599.tumblr.com

Anthony Mecha

Anthony Mecha

Jim Gresko is an industrial designer who started sketching with Rochester Sketch just today! He lectures and teaches and you can see more of his sketches at jimgreskosketches.carbonmade.com

Mary Ann Coleman is primarily a fiber artist who works in other mediums as well. This was her first day with the Rochester Sketch group! She designed her own unique brooch, seen below.

Mary Ann Coleman modeling the brooch she created!

Mary Ann Coleman modeling the brooch she created!

In addition to the Rochester Sketch group, a number of artists who have displayed work at Main Street Arts spread across town, sketching, painting, and creating exciting new work.

Lana Grauer is a pastel artist who primarily creates landscapes. When asked why she creates landscapes Grauer said that she is a nature lover who enjoys being outdoors and the quiet solitude outdoor drawing allows. She believes that creating artwork from life allows you to look closely at things in a way that is more intense than just seeing them. You can see more of Lana’s work at lanagrauer.com

Lana Grauer

Lana Grauer

Michael Buell is an oil painter who loves working outside. His flower painting of the blooming irises was coming along beautifully when I stopped by.

Michael G. Buell

Michael G. Buell

Don Howell is one of our current artists showing at Upstairs Main Street. His wood carvings of birds create a bright and beautiful flock in the Main Street building. Don started whittling and carving as a way to pass the time during his job, and has progressed to the point where he can picture a 3D sculpture in his head without even creating sketches. Don arrived with a number of carved pieces today, including an impressive carousel horse. His current show, Birds in Nature, runs through July 26, 2014.

Don Howell

Don Howell

Stop by the gallery to see some exciting new artwork, and make sure to check out the rest of what Clifton Springs has to offer! The Sulphur Springs Festival is an annual event, so come by next year to say hello to some of our artists.

Sulphur Springs Festival 2014

Come celebrate at the annual downtown festival while also celebrating our one year anniversary as a gallery!

Friday Evening, June 6
  • Taste wines by Apple Station Winery of Cayuga, NY as part of the Wine Crawl
  • Participate in an art-centered scavenger hunt to win fabulous prizes
  • See artwork by local and regional artists
Saturday, June 7
  • Artists take it to the streets! Watch local artists make artwork on scene throughout the festival (all day)
  • Art activities for kids of all ages (all day)
  • Street Dance with 23 Psaegz; “a rollicking folk orchestra with a booming kick pedal, frolicsome guitar, and far-reaching vocals!” (4pm, in front of the gallery)
  • Plus, two floors of artwork featuring multiple exhibitions of area artists
Exhibitions You Will See

Main Floor Exhibition: FLORA, a juried exhibition of botanical themed artwork featuring 43 NY artists

Upstairs at Main Street Arts: Birds in Nature, wood carvings by Don Howell and paintings by Mark Stash; Metaphysical Musings, artwork by Shannon Crandall and Lacey McKinney; as well as solo shows by Chad Grohman and Joe Tarantelli.

Plus artwork by Lana Grauer, John Ruggles, and Marie Wagner.

More info at the Sulphur Springs Festival website and our Facebook event page

For Drawing Sake

drawings by Harold T. Coogan, Jim Downer, Kathleen Farrell, Jason Flack, Peter Monacelli, and Jason Smith

Opening Reception: March 8, 2014; 4– 7p.m. 

Live Music at the opening by The Dady Brothers!

The exhibition will showcase traditional and non-traditional drawings by Harold T. Coogan, Jim Downer, Kathleen Farrell, Jason Flack, Peter Monacelli, and Jason Smith. All of the artists in this show are affiliated with Monroe Community College of Rochester, New York.

A free drawing workshop with the artists in the exhibition will be held on Saturday, April 5, 2014, 10a.m.–12:30p.m. at the gallery. Supplies will be available for purchase in the gallery shop and participants may also bring their own supplies. All who attend will be able to contribute to the exhibition with drawings made during the workshop!

 

A look back at 2013

It has been just over 6 months since we opened our doors and we have had so much happen in that short period of time. I thought that it was appropriate, as we near the end of 2013, to reflect on the key moments in our short history. Here they are, and here’s to an exciting 2014!

June 1
The building was open to visitors during the annual Sulphur Springs Festival. No art yet, but we rode in a Dodge Victory 6 in the parade.

Empty Gallery

Main Street Arts in Sulphur Spring Festival Parade

 

June 19
The gallery opens its doors for business with the first exhibition,  Locality. Over 30 artists participated in this exciting inaugural exhibition.

First Exhibition at Main Street Arts

Locality6

 

July 13
We had our grand opening and were welcomed by the community with open arms! Over 200 people were in attendance and  we had a great jazz trio to add to the atmosphere.

Grand Opening at Main Street Arts

Main Street Arts Grand Opening

Main Street Arts Grand Opening

 

Summertime
The first exhibition spanned June–August and made for a great first impression for the gallery. The diversity of the work on display set the tone for what people could expect to see when they came in the future.  Artists included: Ashley Billings, Peter Blackwood, Michael Buell Bradley Butler, Kathy Calderwood, Andrew Cho, Bobbi Clifford (B Still) , Steve Duprey, Shannon Elliott, Bonnie Farnsworth, Maria Galens, Michael Goscinsky, Nick Gurewitch, Colleen Griffin-Underhill), Hintery, Mary Housel-Demanchick, Marisa Krol (Interstellar Love Craft), Meredith Mallwitz, Mitch Messina, Caitlin Pallischeck, Lanna Pejovic, Peter Pincus, Jose Enrique Portas, Jan Romeiser, Lisa Rouse (Swallowtail Studio), Bob Snyder, Mark Stash, Sam Stumpf, Joe Tarantelli, Mike Tarantelli, Jean Tidd, Karen Tretiak, Amy Vena, Derek Walborn, and Kate Whorton.

Watch the Locality Documentary here: http://vimeo.com/70291218

 

September 7
Our second exhibition, Landscape: Subject and Stimuli opened. This exhibition featured Meredith Mallwitz of Farmington, Zerbe Sodervick of Rochester, and Chad Grohman of Buffalo. Watch a video from the opening reception here: https://vimeo.com/75100336

Landscape Exhibition at Main Street Arts

Landscape Exhibition at Main Street Arts

Landscape Exhibition at Main Street Arts

 

September 12
We hosted our first art documentary film screening and we started out with a great one! William Kentridge, Anything is Possible. Watch the  trailer here: https://vimeo.com/15192552

Film Screening at Main Street Arts

 

Autumn
We started running classes, got some great press on our exhibitions and continued showing interesting work from talented artists from the Upstate NY region. After our first exhibition ended, we started using the second floor as a space for an “ever-evolving-always-rotating” exhibition that spans genre and medium. This has been a great way to showcase a lot of the talent this region has to offer. This also allows us to show a large variety of art while also showing thematic exhibitions, solo shows, and juried group shows on the main floor. We also began carrying art supplies in our gallery shop and started hanging artwork at Warfield’s Restaurant and Bakery (across the street from the gallery). The first show at the restaurant included the work of Jose Enrique Portas and Mark Stash.

Classes at Main Street Arts

 

November 9
The opening reception for our 3rd exhibition, Fabulous Fibers which featured 28 artists in the Rochester Area Fiber Artists group.

Rochester Area Fiber Artists

Rochester Area Fiber Artists

 

November 30
Small Business Saturday brought lots of first time visitors in to the gallery and introduced the idea to many that art makes a great gift! We also began tweeting around this time, if you are on twitter…follow us @MainStArts!

 

December 6
Rochester Area Fiber Artists hosed a trunk show at the gallery during the annual Clifton Springs Festival of Lights.

Rochester Area Fiber Artists

Rochester Area Fiber Artists

 

2014 will be an exciting year and we are starting out with a spectacular exhibition called Being Human, featuring 16 artistsThis coming year will also be when we host our first state-wide juried call for work with a show called Flora, focusing on botanical themed art. We will also have our first solo show with ceramic artist, Peter Pincus and by the end of the year a national juried show is on the books! Plenty of exciting exhibitions and events sprinkled in between as well. Lastly, on January 23rd we will be showing a film called From Nothing, Something and will host a Q and A with the director afterward. Please plan on joining us for this amazing film on the creative process (Details here).