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Art On Ctn & Other Happenings

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Pa int ing the Town, a new series on CTN about local artisls, began in August with a half hour look at L eslie Masters. The series continuos thif month with Joan Painter Joans, 1st place winner in the Birmingham-Bloomfield Art Association's 1996 Michigan Fine Arts Competition. Joan Rosenblum will appear in October, Valerie Mann in November, and then eight more artists for a total of twelve shows. CTN (Community Televisión Network, formerly Ann Arbor Community Access Televisión) is Ann Arbor's public access televisión, where local people can show pretty much anything they want, as long as it isn't a commercial. More artists should take advantage of CTN's new production facility in the Edison Center, 425 S. Main. Check out CTN's open house Thursday September 12 from 4:40 to 8:30 pm. Painting the Town's Vine Productions has already made one show, Ann Arbor Sculpture Garden, which carne out last year and was a great success. The new series is produced by Lisa Reed with coordinating producer Kirk Kitchen, interviewer Abbdulah Saremi, and writer Kimberly Baker. The first show took us to the home and studio of Leslie Masters, who paints and creates other objects in bright colors that sometimes don't come across in video. I had actually seen one of the paintings, a record of the sunsets of an entire year painted in a grid covering a canvas, at a Michigan Guild show. The subtle day-to-day differences in the small squares of paint were lost in the blur of video. But seeing the artist talk about the painting provided a unique perspective that complements actually saeing the picture. The eye automatically makes allowances for video, and I feit I was able to imagine how other pieces looked just by seeing them on the screen. Joan Painter Joans is happy with how her work looks in this month's show. Producer Lisa Reed says that the whole thing is an experiment, and variations in quality are a consequence of exploring new ground. According to her, later episodes are much improved, especially in their audio. Reed says that the goal of the series is to use TV to connect the local art world in a "virtual gallen," where the painting travels to the spectator rather than the reverse. Painting the Town will provide an intímate, mmediatecommunication within the local arts community , like holding up a mirror to it. In the foreground of the mirror are the artists, who are often seeing themselves through the TV eye for the first time. As the series gradually appears, the producers will watch to see how the artists perceive themselves in the videos, as well as how the shows affect the community. All the artists will use the videos for self-promotion, and the galleries are ecstatic about having this additional resource to help present the artists to the public. October's artist Joan Rosenblum will have an exhibit that month in T'Mara Gallery, and other artists are also planning concurrent shows. Each segment of Painting the Town will be on CTN Channel 9 three times a month : the first Tuesday at 9 pm, the second Thursday at 1 0 am, and the third Saturday at 4pm. This month's show dates are Sept. 3, 12 and 21. Gallery changes continue. August saw not only the closing of Alexa Lee Gallery, but also the closing of the new Yribar Gallery on 4th Ave. Taking Yribar's place as the biggest Ann Arbor gallery, The Arthouse has reopened as The 637 n the 4,000 sq. ft. basement of the building on S. Main that The Ark is moving out of. The "live musicfine art venue" opened August 31 with live-mixed dance music and a show of paintings, photographs and other graphic work by Robert Kinnaird, Peter Mertz, Jen Schmidt, Annemarie Wisink and Kurt Wunderlich. Instigator Krysta Ahn welcomes artists to approach her about shows. Ahn plans to operate the venue as a nonprofit, and it is already a cooperative effort, with others in the local scène such as the publishers of Do Or Donut taking over some responsibilities. The 637 brings visual arts together with poetry, live music, DJ music and who knows what else in the most exciting new addition to our arts scène. U-M Museum of Art is celebrating its 50th anniversary with a Birthday Bash Sunday, Sept. 22. They have a new slogan: "Fifty years of opening eyes and minds." There will be Museum tours, Dixieland jazz by Olivia St. Stompers, and a special showing of "Frisian Landscape," a light-sensitive watercolor by Emile Nolde. Ten Ann Arbor bakeries have donated cakes which will be given away as door prizes, and Mayor Ingrid Sheldon and other local celebrities will conduct a grand ceremonial cake-cutting. Children will appreciate storytelling by Trudy Bulkley, a balloon artist, and Gallery Games. Also at the UMMA this month are five paintings by world-famous Russian emigré artists Vitaly Komar and Alex Melamid done in collaboration with the Toledo Zoo's African elephant Renée. No draftee, Renée has been painting for ten years already - the human artists followed her lead when they were painting. Komar and Melamid will appear in person September 25, and the New Art League is showing a video documentary about them as the "Second Saturday" event for September. See the Visual Arts Calendar below for details. ■ miiMTYn


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