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Kansas And Missouri Artists Selected For ‘State Of The Art’ Exhibition At Crystal Bridges

calderkamin @ July 28, 2014


In 2013, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Ark., embarked on a project to discover “the most compelling American art being created today.”

Over a period of about 10 months, museum president Don Bacigalupi and assistant curator Chad Alligood crisscrossed the country. They traveled more than 100,000 miles — by plane and car — and stopped in the homes and studios of nearly 1,000 artists.

The result of this epic journey: 200 artworks and 102 artists selected for the exhibition,State of the Art: Discovering American Art Now, which opens in September. Bacigalupi calls it “a glimpse into the state of art in our nation at this moment.”

There’s sculpture, ceramics, painting, photography, video, site-specific installation, and more. The artists range in age from early 20s to late 80s, from every region of the country, including 27 from the Midwest.

Five artists in the exhibition are based in Missouri, including Miki Baird and Calder Kamin (Kansas City), Jamie Adams and Tim Liddy (St. Louis), and Julie Blackmon(Springfield). There are also two artists from Kansas: A. Mary Kay (Lindsborg) andRandy Regier (Wichita).

“We looked for engagement with issues and narratives that underpin our everyday lives, as well as an ability to manipulate material in manifest or beautiful and accessible ways,” Alligood told the Los Angeles Times. “We talked a lot about appeal. Contemporary art is vital and important and can reach a wide audience; it’s not hermetic, not closed, not purposefully obfuscating.”

Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, designed by architect Moshe Safdie, opened in 2011. It was founded by Walmart heiress and arts patron Alice Walton. The museum’s permanent collection spans five centuries, from Colonial times to the present.

Welcome: Dane Zahorsky 2/5

Michael Wickerson @ July 27, 2014

Gestalt Residency: Day 2 [H is for Heuristics]

Updated 3 minutes ago
5 Day 'flash' residency while tending chickens, feeding cats, and talking to myself and the land at Wickerson Studios LLC

Day 2:

A heuristic is the cognitive tool that enabled us to move beyond direct visual observation as our only means for ‘knowing’ a thing or better in solving a problem, a shortcut. When asked how many sides a square has, I will tell you 4. It doesn’t matter if I can see the square or not, because I know conceptually, relationally, through precedent, that a square has 4 sides, and if it doesn’t then it’s simply not a square.

In the same way we usefully engage heuristics to make value judgments based on our available information. One of my favorite lessons in heuristics comes from a course taught by one of the best lecturers on the planet, Daniel Robinson. In speaking to heuristics in relation to functional fixedness [or the tendency to use a concept or behavior that has worked in the past non-contextually or willy-nilly], he speaks to a pedantic tool that a friend of his uses when teaching a class on the very subject: The professor enters the classroom on the first day of class through the window, he then asks his students is that a window or a door?

As stated yesterday the point is that, we learn through instruction and example how to use a thing. The challenge then both in relation to artistic practice and everyday life is to take stock of both the heuristics and algorithms that we implicitly rely on, and to see them in tune with those values and dogmas with which we would choose to be associated in the first and all instances after, as in Kant’s moral imperative, or the Thomas Paine's idea of fidelity.

It also means being able to look past those that do not serve us or do a disservice to us and to move past the limitations therein.

A window can be a door, though it might not make pragmatic sense to use it as such, to let our creative faculties free to rethink use, is often the only way to find inspiration, and indeed innovation.

Enter: Dane Zahorsky 1/5

Michael Wickerson @

Gestalt Residency: Day 1 [Relative Authority]

Updated 17 hours ago
5 Day 'flash' residency while tending chickens, feeding cats, and talking to myself and the land at Wickerson Studios LLC

Day 1:

Since Nietzsche’s ‘Gay Science,’ was published in 1882, and followed by the secularizing of, well, everything, we were charged with being, as individuals, the single progenitors of meaning. We became our own Prometheus.

In other words, we, not anyone or anything else, are responsible for creating the meaning in our lives. We act, and in so acting, meaning is made through the implications and consequences of those actions.

I believed this for a very long time, from Roark to Sisyphus, everywhere there was opportunity to fashion the world in all the ways we want, to produce function, purpose, and meaning, as aggregate forces that unify into a single vision, one’s will made manifest as the truest end of an examined and joyous life.

Though with age, and some perspective, one cannot stray too far from the words of John Haines, in his essays on country living:

“When life is simplified, its essence becomes clearer, and we know our lives as part of some ancient human activity in a time measured not by clocks and calendars but by the turning of a great wheel, the positions of which are not wage-hours, nor days and weeks, but immense stations called Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter.”

This stands in line with another school of thought; one most clearly articulated by a man I don’t turn to often, Martin Heidegger. He would stand for Reception, not Action, being the true arbiter of meaning and purpose within one’s life.

That we must choose to face what the idea of ultimate or necessary authority means. In this instance, authority not as a monotheistic God, or an overarching government, but instead, as a life defined by seasons, ones that have no care whether we plant barley or grain, as they will continue to unfold regardless. When we talk about global warming and it’s consequences we become more attune to realizing that to live in a state of balance on any level we must take into account the authority of our environment, to exist within healthy limitations necessary for habitation, to provide certain structure, that thus gives us a framework with which to fashion infinite possibilities.

Likewise, when we choose to focus or hone certain skills or receptive faculties that train us to be open to specific types of experience, we give into the authority of a larger structure, the one that allows for arete. The chess master sees the 2 or 4 move mate, because he has worked himself into the authoritative framework of playing chess, just as the rice farmer sees the coming breeze while planting or harvesting, not as coincidence but at part of the larger task at hand. It is from within this structure that one can move towards creation, improvisation, and manipulation while staying true enough to that structure as to still exist within its definition.

We know what things mean by the ways in which we use them; we know who we are through the types of experiences we pursue.

To find a balance between Action and Reception is also to find a 'Relative Authority' to both actively take responsibility for the creation of meaning, while also engaging in a humility and functional subjugation to the authority of any given system or experience, that there is indeed something larger than yourself, mainly:

Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter.

Fisher of Men

Michael Wickerson @ July 23, 2014

Jorge Luis Borges wrote a fascinating short story ‘Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius’ about a world, discovered in an Encyclopedia, which slowly through the literary process, comes to posses customs, philosophies, psychology, history, language and literature. So much so that it inevitably grows to encompass and eventually overwhelm our own world. Tlön and Uqbar are a world which:

A secret and benevolent society… arose to invent a country. Its vague initial program included "hermetic studies," philanthropy and the cabala. From this first period dates the curious book by Andrea. After a few years of secret conclaves and premature syntheses it was understood that one generation was not sufficient to give articulate form to a country. They resolved that each of the masters should elect a disciple who would continue his work. This hereditary arrangement prevailed; after an interval of two centuries the persecuted fraternity sprang up again in America. In 1824, in Memphis (Tennessee), one of its affiliates conferred with the ascetic millionaire Ezra Buckley. The latter, somewhat disdainfully, let him speak - and laughed at the plan's modest scope. He told the agent that in America it was absurd to invent a country and proposed the invention of a planet. To this gigantic idea he added another, a product of his nihilism (4): that of keeping the enormous enterprise a secret. At that time the twenty volumes of the Encyclopaedia Britannica were circulating in the United States; Buckley suggested that a methodical encyclopedia of the imaginary planet be written. He was to leave them his mountains of gold, his navigable rivers, his pasture lands roamed by cattle and buffalo, his Negroes, his brothels and his dollars, on one condition: "The work will make no pact with the impostor Jesus Christ." Buckley did not believe in God, but he wanted to demonstrate to this nonexistent God that mortal man was capable of conceiving a world.
-- Jorge Luis Borges, Labyrinths, 1988

Though I doubt Mike has ever read any Borges, his sculptures and drawings attempt in their own way to modestly duplicate Ezra Buckley’s efforts, in that they are the awkward remnants of a machine-age which never happened.

His sculptures are built out of concrete, steel and bits of wood. There’s an industrial feel to them; both in the sense that his work seems to be the creation of some foreign manufacturing, but also because they’re the tools that would work in some unknown and unknowable endeavor.

I’m tempted to say that they seem to be the modernist leavings of a more primitive world. Of a civilization left behind. An awkward society of giants able to lift monstrous tools of stone and wieldy machines of iron. Yet, at the same time, those very materials are those of the world of now. Concrete, forged steel and milled wood. They’re the detritus of our industrially developed North America and its crumbling manufacturing sector.

And so, like Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius, Mike’s sculptures are the firmament of a world not rediscovered, but one created in toto and waiting, either for entropy to bury it again, or for the lands of his fertile invention to overcome and overwhelm our own.

- Lars Townsend, Michael Wickerson Catalogue Essay, 2012

Student Opportunity Deadline: Kansas City Friends of Alvin Ailey announces a $500 award!

calderkamin @ July 17, 2014


Kansas City Friends of Alvin Ailey has a 30 year history of making dance accessible to all, teaching young people critical life skills through dance, and modeling interracial and multicultural community partnerships.  To celebrate our 30th Anniversary and community members that exemplify the life and vision of our mission, we are requesting proposals from Kansas City Art Institute students to create an three-dimensional award for KCFAA to present at their 30th Anniversary Gala.


The winning design will receive $500 plus the cost of materials to produce the piece.

Medium options:  glass, ceramic, fiber and other materials considered.  Material must be three-dimensional, inspired, and appropriate to use as an award.

Dimensions:  No larger than 24″ x 24″

Theme: The ART of Dance

Proposals due: August 1, 2014

(please include estimated cost of materials)

Proposal Winner Announced: August 18, 2014

Project Review: September 2014

Project Completion: October 1, 2014


Proposals submitted to:

Randy Williams, Advancement Office

Kansas City Art Institute

4415 Warwick Blvd.

Kansas City, Mo  64111

e-mail: rwilliams@kcai.edu

phone: 816-802-3527


Job Postings for July 2014

calderkamin @


HMK Hallmark has a part-time opening for a Graphic Artist – Service Specialists. They are responsible for the stores graphic design, laser engraving, dye sublimation, embroidery, and high speed printing/book binding. Submit resume to sm0399@hmkcsg.hallmark.com or contact Leslie Anderson, Store Manager 816-931-4555 for more info.

KCAI has an opening for an academic and career advisor.

Townsend communications, Inc. has an opening for Corporate Art Director / Graphic Designer. The Art Director  formulates concepts, designs and production of layouts for magazines, advertisements, other related publications and company sales /promotional aids. Applicants should contact Alice Chandler: alicec@townsendkc.com

Bitterman Family Confections  has an opening for a Creative Designer. This position makes custom labels for customers using their logo and adding a creative spin. Product flyers, catalogs, signs, candy bar wrappers, etc as needed. Submit a resume and link to your portfolio to HR@BITTERMANCANDY.COM

Murray’s Ice Creams & Cookies seeks a people person to fill a Soda Jerk position. Contact Murray Nixon at mplosey@gmail.com.

The University of Missouri Extension in Lexington, MO has an opening for a Community Arts Regional Specialist

The Kansas City Ballet currently has a receptionist position open.

Full time Graphic web Designer and Product Manager Position in Overland Park focusing on building wordpress sites.

Framer position in westport.

CR Promotions is currently hiring a part-time Graphic Design Artist for the Kansas City area.

DeCloud Studios, an Overland Park, KS based School Yearbook & Senior Photography Company is currently accepting applications from talented, responsible and highly motivated individuals to join our team as a Seasonal Photo Editor.

Phoenix Gallery is opening a second gallery in the Plaza and would like to hire a KCAI student or alumni for a part-time position. Send your resume and contact info to Susan Shea at info@phoenixgalleryks.com

Division-D in Columbia, MO has an opening for a Digital Creative Associate. They are responsible for internal branding, developing and designing creative units for current and future clients. Send your resume, contact info and portfolio to careers@divisiond.com

Kansas City Web Design® seeks a Full Time Web & Graphic Designer / Project Manager. To apply go to http://kcwebdesigner.com/contact-us/ for more info contact Phil Singleton phil@seokcmo.com

University of Missouri in Columbia has several opening available: https://myhr.umsystem.edu/psp/tamext/COLUM/HRMS/c/HRS_HRAM.HRS_CE.GBL?SiteId=9  and at their extension school http://extension.missouri.edu/careers/positions_available.html


Interact Center is a non-profit arts organization offering full time creative practice at the professional level for adults with disabilities. We are a state-licensed adult day care center offering both theatrical and visual arts daily artistic programming. Mission-driven and creative, we are looking for the right candidate to join our team.

Curator: Utah State University’s Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art (NEHMA) seeks a visionary Curator specializing in modern and contemporary art with a particular emphasis on art and artists of the western United States.


Various job opportunities at the Guggenheim Museum: NYC.

Current available positions at The Museum of Modern Art, MOMA.

Current available positions at The Whitney Museum of American Art, NYC.
SFMOMA (San Francisco Museum of Modern Art) current Opportunities. San Francisco, USA.

The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago job opportunities. Chicago.

School of the Art Institute of Chicago: Current Full-time Faculty Positions. Chicago, USA.

Cincinnati Artswave current Job Opportunities.

Association of Midwest Museums current Job Opportunities.

The Art + Design Department at Columbia College Chicago is accepting applications .

Gold Coast boutique in Chicago seeks dynamic individual, must have general sales & office work experience in addition to product photography & photo editing skills.

Kompleks Creative, a graphic design and digital marketing agency based in Downtown Durham, NC, is searching for a graphic designer to join their team. To apply visit:  http://komplekscreative.com/careers or careers@komplekscreative.com


Beach Museum Open A.I.R. Resource Page

calderkamin @ July 8, 2014

Calder’s artistic practice and ideas are based on her research. Calder created a list of YouTube videos and links that cover her ideas on de-exinction and tallgrass prairie megafauna for gallery visitors during her mini residency at the Beach Museum of Art at K-State.

Resurrection Biology

CNN: Bringing back a mammoth for cloning

TED Stewart Brand: The dawn of de-extinction. Are you ready?

Pure Nature Specials – The Return of the Buffalo









Coalescence – Solo Exhibition

labcake @ July 6, 2014

Coronae 6, monoprint, 25 x 25″, 2014.


Solo Exhibition

July 17-August 17, 2014
opening reception: Thursday, July 17, 6:30-8:00pm

1234 Ninth St NW, Washington, D.C.  20001     202.232.4788
Wednesday-Saturday 11-6, Sunday 12-5, and by appointment

Laura Berman – Coalescence

Layers build, imagery compounds, colors mix and patterns form in Laura Berman’s latest monoprints. Her process of working is playful and dynamic so that her imagery can become beautifully mixed and re-mixed again. Berman’s work focuses on essentials of direction, precision, iteration, and play within space– reflecting the eternally active coalescence of everything in our universe.

Berman is inspired by landscapes both immense and miniscule. She has recently spent a lot of time in the very middle of Kansas. The Flint Hills region is a vast landscape of nothingness– no trees, no things, no people– it’s akin to being out at sea. Out there the distance between sky and land is short and unmediated. This new work reflects the slow and dramatic connections between enormous spaces on and beyond our earth and dense details found in environments of transition, such as blades of grass and rocks on a beach. These coalescing landscapes are all born of stardust and motion. Everything is related– and nothing is identical. Stars follow this pattern, as do planets, and rocks, and people. As it is in our universe, so it is in Berman’s prints.

Request for Qualifications for Graphic Design Services

Laura Berman @ July 3, 2014
ArtsKC – Regional Arts Council
Deadline for responses: 5:00PM, July 7, 2014

For ArtsKC fiscal year beginning on July 1, 2014 and running through June 30, 2015, ArtsKC is seeking services from a design firm or freelance graphic design artist to assist ArtsKC by providing graphic design solutions and creating materials and digital renderings to be used for ArtsKC’s most high profile print materials, digital tactics, and templates for staff use for ongoing communications. Specifically, these pieces are likely to include, but may not be limited to:
  i.      Materials for our Annual ArtsKC Awards Luncheon (electronic Save the Date, printed invitation, and program)
ii.      Materials for the Annual Inspiration Breakfast – a fundraiser for the general operations of the agency (electronic Save the Date, printed invitation, and program)
iii.      Annual ArtsKC Fund brochure and support materials
iv.      Templates for our direct mail newsletters
The specific pieces contracted as part of the agreement will be negotiated based on hourly rate, evolving agency needs, and available resources.
ArtsKC seeks a firm or individual available to provide such services for a 12 month period. Interested parties should submit a statement of qualifications to provide such services using the following guidelines and instructions.
  1. Submission Requirements:
Statement of Qualifications should provide a straightforward, complete, and concise description of the firm’s capabilities and qualifications to provide graphic design services to ArtsKC. Please prepare three copies of your statement and work samples. Each copy should be bound in a single volume and include any documentation you may wish to submit.

i.      Contact information
On a single cover sheet, please provide:
  1. The lead firm or individual’s name
  2. Contact person’s name
  3. The year the firm or practice was established
  4. The type of work, specialty, and size of firm
ii.      Please respond to all of the questions as presented herein. ArtsKC prefers that all services not completed by staff members to be completed by a single firm or freelance graphic design artist for the entirety of the contracted period.
Interested firms or individuals are invited to submit a statement of qualifications that contain the following information:
  1. Brief history of graphic design services provided to nonprofits, arts organizations or artists, or other similar industries
  2. Description of the firm’s organizational structure, including work history, resume, or summary of specific qualifications of all staff who would work directly with ArtsKC
  3. Samples of up to five projects that you have completed and two potential client references. Please include a description of the nature of the work, the size and complexity of the project, and the amount and agreed fee arrangements.
  4. Any other information you believe would make the firm’s work on behalf of ArtsKC superior to that of other firms or individuals or any information about specific skills you hold which would be of benefit to our relationship.
iii.      Fees
  1. Whether you would be willing to agree to a fee cap.
  2. The normal hourly rate of each staff member whose resume or other qualifications you have included or whose job category may be required.
  3. ArtsKC will work with printers and other vendors to conduct the bidding process for services required.
  4. Any other foreseen fees or charges.
  5. Projected hours needed for one or more listed projects
Statement of Qualifications must be received by 5:00PM, July 7th, 2014.
Deliver or mail materials to:
Attn: Sara Vogt
106 Southwest Blvd.
Kansas City, MO  64108

the “unattainable”?

Michael Wickerson @ June 30, 2014

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