(Courtesy of Guest Blogger Joan Milligan, Euclid Art Association program director)
How do you start an art movement? By making connections! During a planning meeting in June for the second-annual Euclid Art Walk, the Euclid Art Association brought up the idea that an art walk should have an art show for the students of the city. That was how the All-Student September Art Show was born.
The goal of the student art show was to connect the community to the local schools to promote the arts. Art is an important, but often limited, part of curriculum. Art teaches students be creative and to look for and recognize designs and patterns all around them. By developing this ability, students can be led to careers not only in art, but also in computer science, graphic design, architecture, engineering and more. Because of limitations in school budgets or family resources, many talented students don’t have access to quality art supplies. We realized the art show could serve another purpose – create a forum to display and recognize budding talent and award that talent with access to good supplies for various media.
Once the seed was planted, the show began to grow! A local landlord offered a vacant storefront to use as a gallery. Businesses, including HGR Industrial Surplus, made donations so that good-quality art supplies could be awarded as prizes to the students and classrooms. The prizes presented to the winners included:
Large and small tabletop easels
Framing certificates to Driftwood Gallery
Gift certificates to Dodd Camera
Additionally, the Cleveland Museum of Art sent its mobile art truck complete with hands-on art projects for children, and even a troupe of stilt walkers!
The Euclid Art Walk was held on Friday, Sept. 22, from 6:00-11:00 p.m. The Student Art Show was held from 6:00-8:00 p.m. in the donated storefront. We created a mini-gallery-feel in the store with art racks and tables from the Euclid Art Association. Live painting opportunities for both adults and children were available in front of the store.
This inaugural art show had 46 entries from elementary through high-school students ranging. There were enough entries at the high-school level that we were able to designate two judging categories: Photography and Fine Arts.
(Courtesy of Guest Blogger Vaughn Terpack, Three Rivers Forge)
Blacksmithing is my sole source of income at the moment. I got tired of working for someone else and having to deal with all the soap opera drama; so, I decided to take a gamble and start smithing full time.
Financially, quitting a “real” job to try my hand at being an artist probably wasn’t the best of ideas. It’s been a thorough bear of a struggle, but then I look at all my customers around the world and marvel at how these people have chosen my work over that of every blacksmith on the Internet. From Singapore to Switzerland, Australia to Israel, there’s a little bit of my soul in every corner of the world.
I honestly don’t know how you put a dollar figure on that, or how you can even quantify what that means. In a hundred years, I’ll be dead and buried, but my legacy will live on in iron.
When I first started, my goal was simply to help bring the blacksmith’s craft back to the forefront of peoples’ minds. I wanted to help get people thinking about quality over quantity. I wanted folks to see what I call the “Art in the Everyday” — opting for beautiful handmade goods in lieu of cheap mass-produced products, even if that means having less “stuff” overall.
It’s hard to convince people to spend $40 on a hand-forged bottle opener when most bottles have twist-off tops and the opener they bought for a dollar at the corner store works just as well as anything I can make. But, I honestly believe that by sacrificing on the quality, surrounding ourselves with chintzy, we impact our psyches in a negative way.
My hope is to make products that the average person can own and look at every single day. When you hang your coat on a hand-forged wall hook or pop the top on a cold one with a hand-forged bottle opener, you’re in touch with something that’s rare these days. You get to experience that “art in the everyday.”
(Vaughn’s work can be found in his store, Three Rivers Forge on etsy.com.)
(Courtesy of Guest Blogger Joe Powell, HGR’s graphic designer)
On the corner of Detroit Ave. and Marlowe Ave., in historic Lakewood, Ohio, sits a unique furniture shop called Empty Nest. The owner is a long-time customer of HGR Industrial Surplus and an emerging artist. Bob McNulty studied sculpture with Gene Kangas and photography with Misumi Hayashi at Cleveland State University before traveling the world as a sailmaker and boat captain. After being in the boat industry for 25 years, he left the field in 2008 to pursue other ventures, including opening a furniture store. It was in that line of work when he was introduced to industrial furniture. Being intrigued by it, he started to network within the community. Then in 2010, he decided to pursue art full time and brand his own style of industrial chic.
McNulty was fascinated by the distressed look of the industrial movement and wanted to push it further. By applying 5 to 12 coats of paint and using various techniques to remove the layers, the colors beneath began to show Bob a picture. He started to mix geometric shapes and free-flowing designs to create paintings that are as fascinating to touch as they are to look at. You can feel the textures of the layers and see the dimensions. Pictures do not justify their beauty. Bob McNulty, the artist, was born.
I looked around at the different pieces in his art opening on April 29, 2017. Some reminded me of topographical maps of rural towns, while others had a molecular feel to them. The majority of the pieces were made from items bought at HGR, where Bob says, “It was like a candy store” the first time he walked in. He now makes art full time, which keeps him busy. Each painting takes two to three weeks from start to finish, which allows time for application of all the layers. You can see his work at Empty Nest, 14423 Detroit Ave, Lakewood, Ohio.