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Nerd Nite #71 - How to Avoid Making Art While Still Being an Artist

Mon, 02/15/2021 - 9:02pm

While drawing in public, I have had countless conversations with random strangers about Art and being an artist, and mostly about how almost everybody thinks they aren’t one and can’t make any. I will endeavor to prove that everyone in the room was or is an artist, I will explain how my father’s desire for peace & quiet in restaurants defused my own Fear of the Blank Canvas, and I will answer the eternal question asked of every sidewalk artist: “But won’t you be sad when it rains?”

About David Zinn: David Zinn is a life-long A2 townie, an alumnus of the U-M Residential College, and a former freelance commercial artist who currently makes his living by drawing on sidewalks with chalk. He is as surprised by this as you are. Follow him on Twitter @davidzinn_art.

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Bunraku-Style Puppetry with Tom Lee

Mon, 01/27/2020 - 1:53pm

U-M Center for World Performance Studies visiting puppet artist Tom Lee presents a special workshop exploring Japanese traditional puppetry techniques that have had an enormous influence on world puppetry performance. Following a short talk on bunraku-style puppetry, participants had a hands-on opportunity to handle traditional Japanese puppets and draw back the curtain on how these beautiful puppets are brought to life through skillful puppetry technique. ​​​​​​​

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Ann Arbor Wayzgoose & Printing Festival | Voices in Print Speaker Series

Tue, 01/21/2020 - 9:10am

The Voices in Print Speaker Series features three printmakers working in the field today. Each speak for 20-30 minutes on how they are involved in printmaking & related topics.

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Author Event | Linda Solomon: The Queen Next Door: Aretha Franklin, An Intimate Portrait

Mon, 12/09/2019 - 9:24am

The Queen Next Door: Aretha Franklin, An Intimate Portrait is a book full of firsts, as photojournalist Linda Solomon was invited not only to capture historical events in Aretha’s music career showcasing Detroit, but to join in with the Franklin family’s most intimate and cherished moments in her beloved hometown.  In this talk she reflects on this book which documents Aretha's life and career.

Linda Solomon met Aretha in 1983 when Linda was beginning her career as a photojournalist and newspaper columnist and was hired to capture the singer’s major career events, and to also document everything else.  What developed over these years of photographing birthday and Christmas parties, annual celebrity galas, private backstage moments, photo shoots with the iconic pink Cadillac, and more, was a friendship between two women who grew to enjoy and respect one another.

Martin Bandyke, morning drive host on Ann Arbor's 107one, hosted this event.

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A2CAF 2019 - Kids' Comics Awards

Mon, 07/29/2019 - 12:36pm

Which comic in 2018 had the most epic adventure? Which comic had the best friends? Kids voted in these and other categories, including their favorite characters and graphic novels! Help us celebrate the seventh annual Kids’ Comics Awards! With puppets, cartoonists, and lots of laughs!

This event was part of A2CAF 2019, an annual all-ages Comic Arts Festival!

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A2CAF 2019 - Author Discussion: Raina Telgemeier and Jerry Craft

Tue, 07/16/2019 - 12:35pm

Join Jerry Craft and Raina Telgemeier for a discussion on Jerry's graphic novel, New Kid. Together they'll explore Jerry's journey as a young artist to a published graphic novelist, and how young people might find their own path into comics. 

This event was part of A2CAF, an annual all-ages Comic Arts Festival!

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Author Event | Guardians of Detroit

Mon, 05/06/2019 - 10:25am

Due to a fortunate confluence of water, geography and entrepreneurial vision, Detroit at the end of the 19th century was poised to experience unprecedented growth. Even before the Ford Motor Company was established in 1903, Detroit was a major industrial center and transportation hub. All this commercial activity and prosperity led to a building boom of incredible proportions at a time when the most popular architectural styles were Beaux Arts, Gothic Revival, Classical Revival, and Art Deco. Each of these styles typically required extensive ornamentation and because of this, Detroit became a treasure trove of architectural sculpture. 

Jeff Morrison’s new book Guardians of Detroit: Architectural Sculpture in the Motor City documents these incredible features in a city that began as a small frontier fort and quickly grew to become a major metropolis and industrial titan.  Jeff shares more than 100 spectacular close-up pictures of architectural sculpture from throughout the city of Detroit. You also learn about the symbolism behind the ornamentation and hear some of the untold stories of the artists, artisans, and architects involved in its creation, all drawn from the book. 

Jeff Morrison is a historian and photographer who has been taking pictures since his parents gave him his first camera at age nine. He has a bachelor’s degree in history and art from Eastern Michigan University and over thirty years’ experience as a graphic artist. Jeff lives in Oxford, Michigan, with his lovely wife, Susie, and their wonder dog, Manfred.

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Martin Bandyke Under Covers for December 2018: Martin Bandyke interviews Christopher Bonanos, author of Flash: The Making of Weegee the Famous.

Tue, 12/04/2018 - 11:47am

Arthur Fellig’s ability to arrive at a crime scene just as the cops did was so uncanny that he renamed himself “Weegee,” claiming that he functioned as a human Ouija board. Weegee documented better than any other photographer the crime, grit, and complex humanity of midcentury New York City. In Flash, we get a portrait not only of the man (both flawed and deeply talented, with generous appetites for publicity, women, and hot pastrami) but also of the fascinating time and place that he occupied.

From self-taught immigrant kid to newshound to art-world darling to latter-day caricature―moving from the dangerous streets of New York City to the celebrity culture of Los Angeles and then to Europe for a quixotic late phase of experimental photography and filmmaking―Weegee lived a life just as worthy of documentation as the scenes he captured. With Flash, we have an unprecedented and ultimately moving view of the man now regarded as an innovator and a pioneer, an artist as well as a newsman, whose photographs are among most powerful images of urban existence ever made.

Martin’s interview with Christopher Bonanos was recorded on July 17, 2018.

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Sonabai: Another Way of Seeing - Dr. Stephen Huyler

Thu, 10/18/2018 - 1:28pm

As part of the Rasa Festival, Dr. Stephen Huyler presents a fascinating talk that recounts an amazing story of the discovery of a rural Indian woman's beautiful art.

While imprisoned by her husband for fifteen years, a woman in central India invented an entirely new art form that expresses life's joy. Although Sonabai was illiterate and untrained, her artistic vision is now globally acknowledged. Her work has been the agent of significant social and economic improvement in her region. Sonabai's astonishing story confronts us with our own choices: do we allow ourselves to be victimized by our current issues or can we use our own inner resources to find creative solutions?

An exhibition of Sonabai's art was on view at the Riverside Art Center in Ypsilanti throughout the month of September 2018.

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Wayzgoose | Small Studio, Broad-Shouldered City - Jen Farrell of Starshaped Press

Thu, 10/18/2018 - 12:14pm

In 1999, amidst the height of DIY culture, independent music and publishing and the idea of owning the means of production, Jen Farrell built a small letterpress and design studio, focused on creating meaningful work for herself and other indie entrepreneurs. Over the past 19 years, the type of work produced in the studio has shifted but the spirit has not. Here she discusses the early days of the studio, its first mission statement, and how Starshaped Press continues to grow alongside its urban community in a city known for its diverse and interconnected neighborhoods.

Since 1999, Jennifer Farrell has operated Starshaped Press in Chicago, focusing on printing everything from business cards and social stationery to music packaging and posters, as well as custom commissions and wholesale cards and prints. All work in the studio is done with metal and wood type, making Starshaped one of the few presses in the country producing commercial work while preserving antique type and related print materials. Jennifer’s work has been repeatedly recognized both in print and design blogs and has appeared in poster shows throughout the USA and Europe. Her work can be viewed at www.starshaped.com.