Monday, February 24, 2014

Collective exhibition "FIRE OVER KANSAS-EVENT on the HORIZON"

Monday, February 24, 2014

Collective exhibition "FIRE OVER KANSAS-EVENT on the HORIZON"

Cross-border exhibition, open to the sound of music on Friday 21 February 2014, attracted a crowd of guests to an open Studio. The project, titled "FIRE OVER KANSAS-event on the horizon," involved a few artists, regardless of sharing them. From Jaroslaw Rodyczem and his daughter Ella Fig. Maciek Jerzmanowski The starting point was a flaming wooden outdoor installations, which Michael Wickerson created at his residence, in the u.s. State of Kansas. Dreamlike photograms, documenting these fiery form and artistically, which had been commissioned by the sculptor of space, by Yaroslav Rodycz. Piotr Lutyński completed the exposure of its own interpretation of the vision of the cosmos. He also participated in the project by Erik Meulenbelt. Unfortunately, not all of the authors were able to arrive at the Polish on the opening of the exhibition. Piotr Lutyński, Rodycz with her daughter Have made the biggest impression on me is these photograms, carrying with them baśniowość, fantasy, nierealność, magic, film-like scenery. Originally they are far greater, but the City reached their record digital and here on the site were printed in a smaller format. There were plenty of creative Peter abstraction, such as Lutyńskiego. antlers oplatające globe, which he called "the eye of the deer." At the exhibition you can also watch a simpler, much more symbolic works. Regulars of the Open Studio readily saw traces of the previous project, realized at this point by Waldemar Rudyka. Cut the wood with his objects has been treated as a backdrop for the presentation of new work, and the gallery was ignited fire, a taste of the American żywiołowości. When you listen to music you were the Vernissage in the implementation of the Core team, a project of Peter Lutyńskiego.

Fire Over Kansas images

Fire Over Kansas blog

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Fire Over Kansas - Na Horyzoncie Zdarzeń

Fire Over Kansas - Na Horyzoncie Zdarzeń Piotr Lutyński & Rodycz, Wickerson, Meulenbelt i gościnnie Zespół Rdzeń wernisaż 21 luty 2014., godz. 19.00

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Wes Morgan Review - KCAI Michael Wickerson


KCAI Sculpture Workshop

Michael Wickerson, chair of sculpture at KCAI, demonstrates how sand cast molds are made ready for pouring hot aluminum at the sculpture department foundry.

Kansas City Art Institute chair of sculpture Michael Wickerson is a bundle of contagious energy. The 38 year old professor and father of two, 4 and 2 year old boys, is passionate about the art and technical aspects of making a work of art. KCAI Students know he is also vigilant about safety. The Workshop at the school’s foundry demonstrated to our group of a dozen visitors from St. Louis this chilly Saturday morning in February what it means to study fine art. “An MFA is not really a master of fine arts as much as it is an indication that the individual is a manager of fine arts. You have to take it upon yourself to understand the tools.” Wilkerson says, “The study of art is changing in profound ways. We want students to fail. It is through trial and error we earn the best opportunities to learn. You begin with a concept and from there you need to explore ways to create your vision.”

Michael had several students on hand to share what it is like to heat and pour aluminum into sand cast molds. Ben from California is passionate about working with wood. A former Marine is passionate about starting a sculpture studio to benefit disabled veterans. Students from Arizona, Florida and Missouri chose KCAI to pursue their dreams for different reasons. All embrace a commitment to become better at their craft. In another part of the studio space, continuing education students are acquiring skill at oxy fuel cutting and welding (MIG and TIG). It is a busy Saturday at the KCAI sculpture department but you immediately sense that this is a place where concepts can become reality. Wikerson is gracious and ambitious. He just might be the perfect fit at this center of excellence located so close to the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art and the Nelson-Atkins Museum where the Donald Hall Sculpture Park dedicates 22 acres to  world-renowned achievements in sculpture.

The visitors from St. Louis returned on the River Runner Amtrak train on Saturday afternoon. On that ride, docents from the St. Louis Laumeier Sculpture Park (LSP) are emphatic in their praise of the visit, notably the experience at KCAI. “We felt like cultural ambassadors returning from a successful mission. We found a wonderful energy at the Kansas City Art Institute that gave us a renewed appreciation for what it means to be an artist,” says Wes Morgan, co chair of the docent crew at the Laumeier Sculpture Park. “We saw an awesome amount of great sculpture and contemporary art while we were in Kansas City but the workshop at KCAI gave us insight into emerging artists.”  

My uncle Andrew Morgan was president of KCAI for about ten years prior to 1970 before he was recruited to the University of Miami to head their art department in the 1970s. He was also an accomplished painter. He died in March of 2011 at 88 years of age. This trio of photos of Andrew around 1977 appeared in UM’s Ibis Yearbook. 

CHEŁMEK. Art, flames and silence of the churches

CHEŁMEK. Art, flames and silence of the churches
Chełmek, plin-11.02.2014 16: 44
"Contemporary art, flames and peace churches"-evening walk around Krakow. Municipal centre of culture, sport and recreation in Chełmku invites you to participate in the 50. his exit from the cycle "the routes of the cultural heritage of Silesia, Zagłębie and Lesser Poland".
Animators with Chełmka invite you to a trip to Krakow:-Head for an evening meeting with contemporary art, Krakow climate, history and architecture. We will visit the Museum of contemporary art, "MOCAK", where in addition to the permanent collection are presented unique works Of Hasiora and collages of Wislawa Szymborska. We the participants of the Vernissage of the exhibition "Fire over Kansas-event on the horizon" and the concert of the group "Core" in the "open workshop". Say goodbye to the artists and the Gallery ' to experience the silence, the Majesty and beauty of the churches of Kazimierz. The rest of the evening we'll soak up the unique atmosphere of squares, streets, alleys and cafes of Kazimierz-Announces Waldemar Rudyk, Director of the Centre for Urban culture, sport and recreation centre in Chełmku. -Despite the many attractions we will remember that before midnight to reach Chełmka-added.
Departure: Sunday, February 21 at noon. 16 out of MOKSiR in Chełmku, pl. Kilińskiego 3 (next to the railway station). The cost of departure 30 zł (transfer, insurance, tickets). Return to Chełmka. h. 24. Payment can be made to account no. 50 8110 1023 2006 0317 6590 0001 in the ABS Bank of co-operatives in Andrychów with Hasior.
Records information:, Tel. 601661771. Number of seats-20, to participate in choosing the order of declarations and payments.,11227-chelmek--sztuka--plomienie-i-cisza-kosciolow

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Laumeier Sculpture Park Docents trip to Kansas City


LSP Docents go to KC

Laumeier Sculpture Park Docents trip to Kansas City

February 14-15, 2014 (l to r - Maureen, Clara, Ray, Mary, Janet, Holly, Jeanette, not pictured June, photo by Wes) 

On the heels of our successful trip to Chrystal Bridges (November 2012) and with an new 2014 season approaching, LSP docent co-chairs Maureen Jennings and Wes Morgan, with the guidance of the park’s director of interpretation, Clara Coleman, decided to orchestrate a trip to Kansas City for Valentine’s Day, a Friday and the following Saturday. The trip by way of Amtrak train service on the River Runner Line to and from would allow for a civilized and cost-effective overnight trip from the Kirkwood Train Station.

We pulled into Kansas City on time at 2:55 and our complimentary shuttle form the Best Western Seville was waiting. A quick check in at the hotel and by 4:00 we were at the information desk in the new Bloch Building addition to the Nelson Atkins Museum. Taking advantage of the remaining sunlight in the day we ventured into the frozen snow and ice that covered the 22 acre Donald Hall Sculpture Garden. The heartiest of us managed to traverse the challenging terrain to get up close to 2 of the four shuttlecock sculptures by Claes Oldenburg, and several of the 13 Henry Moore sculptures strategically on display. Of course, all of us appreciated seeing Mark Di Suvero and Judith Shea works that seem like new looks at old friends since we are accustomed to talking about the works on display at our Laumeier Sculpture Park.

Our crew is well represented with June Shaw, Mary Brauch, Barb Flunker (and her husband Ray), Jeanette Wamser, Maureen Jennings, Wes Morgan and Clara Coleman. We’ll be catching up with Janet Peterson who opted to travel by car. Her sister is a docent at the Nelson-Atkins Museum.

We scheduled a docent tour with an emphasis on the sculpture collection and with that starting point we were given an overview of the park, sculpture, contemporary art and more – all in the context of the bigger picture. Misty, our docent understood immediately that our group of art lovers will be easy to engage yet a challenge to serve in only 90 minutes. She did this expertly. She managed to take our group, starting with the peace and calm of the space devoted to Isamu Naguchi to the upstairs balcony where we could see Aguste Rodin studies for the Gates of Hell and Balzac. We dined at the museum to a violinist along with couples celebrating a special setting for a Friday night Valentine.

The Kansas City Art Institute professor of sculpture Michael Wickerson was an awesome boost of energy for our Saturday morning visit to the KCAI campus. Michael had several students on hand to share what it is like to pour aluminum into sand casts but he is quick to point out that the studio and the furnaces need to be approached with careful planning and safety in mind. He and his students cannot hide their enthusiasm for art. Our group is thrilled to see emerging artists being nurtured by such a capable instructor.

The Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art is just a short walk down the street from KCAI and we manage to get a bite to eat before our final schedule docent tour treat. Chijuly, Stella, Louise Nevelson, another Claes Oldenburg. We managed our time well and got to see a lot. Kansas City is a great Art destination (due in no small part to the Halls, Blochs, Kempers and the Ford Foundation).

This account does not do justice to the amount we were able to see but maybe it provides some insight into the spirit of our team and the passion of art lovers everywhere. Thank You KC!
Rodin's Thinker at Nelson Atkins Museum - KC 
Claes Oldenburg Shuttlecock at Nelson Atkins Museum KC

Michael Wickerson and Student at KCAI pouring aluminium mold at foundry

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Thinking of Patty Catto

"And He Made A Wavy Motion...": Codfish Wickerson's Moon Boat

Michael Wickerson’s sculpture of a tractor-red Viking ship manned by a raggy-taggy band of seafaring puppets dropped anchor in Kansas City’s Robert Frazier Gallery, (3120 Troost) just about the same time the Dead Sea Scrolls Show sailed into town and moored at Union Station.

Though some might have gone right over to trawl the Scrolls, straining for an eyes-on glimpse of Big Mythic Wonders, others might’ve drifted over to ogle Wickerson’s lunatic boat and achieved a similar end.

Oh, blasphemy!! Oh, hell kite!! you might say.  But….

How edifying is it in this day and age to walk into a gallery space and suddenly be bobbing up and down in the Cosmic Ocean like a pubescent porpoise following in the wake of a mirage-like Junk of Dreams?  How fine is it to be visually kidnapped by a crew of mutinous puppets who look like they fled from expensive, full color, art history books, such as  Our Pals the Oceanic Ritual Objects or All Things Huichol or   Chagall Meets The Raft of the Medusa

The answer is rhetorical.

It is edifying.   It is fine right now in a waste landish, parched, cyber spaced-out, depressed, socio-pathic, war-weary culture to do as Melville’s Ishmael (Call him, that, will ya?), does in Moby Dick.  When he’s had enough of the Land and its denial of the gorgeous non-rational, he takes to the Sea where “the gates of the wonder world flood open,” where strange sea beings, elemental, star-drenched nights and troubled seamen from globally dysfunctional families threaten each moment with uncontrolled adventure.

Ships, even ones that will never touch water sail off with us, liberating our grubby, land lubber projections, awakening our religious desire to float, muse, luxuriate, incubate, fly, dress like Captain Hook or Jack Sparrow or Noah or Odysseus, a salty Lord (or Lady) of the Water World, the Underworld, the Underwater World of Wonder.

When Wickerson first revealed to me his sculpture’s title, “He never had a pot for the fish he caught, so he had to use the big dipper,” he did so by singing the whole ditty from whence it came.  Check out, if you will, this strangely familiar, rhymey-dimey master piece of “Stompin’ Tom Connors of Saint John New Brunswick.

Codfish Dan from Newfoundland.  He dreamt that he had three wishes,
And he took Mars and all the stars, and he turned them into big fishes;
He said the sky was much too dry, and he made a wavy motion,
And the moon, like a boat, Began to float upon the starry ocean,

One night he strayed to the Milky Way, To cast his nets upon it,
He spied the tail of what he thought was a whale, And he harpooned Halley’s comet;
He never had a pot for the fish he caught, So he had to use the big dipper,
And the Sun, by Jove, was a very good stove, For cookin’ up smelts and kippers.

Now, the Northern Lights that seemed so bright, like nothin’ could be grander,
Well, they’re just waves of the moon-boat, Made by the Newfoundland Commander;
And don’t you sigh and say, “Oh, my! What gross exaggerations.”
‘Cause he’ll tell you the dream was true, When Codfish Dan awakens.

-Charles Thomas “Stompin’ Tom” Connors (b. 1936 in Saint John, New Brunswick)

Pretty quickly I realized that Codfish Dan had hooked Wickerson’s Self just as easily as he harpooned Halley’ Comet.  And it was my good fortune to witness Wickerson’s transformation from land dwelling sculpture chair of the Kansas City Art Institute to his truer incarnation:

Co-creator Fisherman God who arranges the Cosmos so he can use the Sun to cook up his Fish!!!

Yes, Wickerson had walked the plank and plunged into big old motifs, trans-cultural parallels to Creators like:  Vishnu the Dreamer from whose navel the whole cosmos emerges and recedes, the slumbering Finnegan who’ll WAKE to begin the world again, Raven, Jehovah, Manitou, etc.

Indeed, the Cosmos is made over and over by the Artist/Deity/Scientist, whether a particle physicist Big Banger, a train tagger or possibly you.  From the inner space ocean behind our closed eyes, from the outer space ocean stretching infinitely across the Galaxy, shapes emerge as strange fishes coming almost to the surface.  And it is the Artist/Creator who must catch and cook them, make them somehow real enough to eat – and even to multiply them for the hungry multitude that can and does batten on art daily.

Taking his turn, it’s Wickerson’s strong, spontaneous desire that has fashioned a cartoonish boat into a micro-cosm, a floating world manned by his manic shamanic impulses.  I think the puppets are both his fish and fisherman and that they feed us.  Each might be someone we couldn’t catch for ourselves but when we see them, they have resonance.  Become material, they tell a tale as nicely as any Greek goddess or god or therio-morphic being stepping out of their pantheon.  They are serious.  They are comic.  They are compelling. 

One has a failed fetal face, one a weathered rabbit’s; one seems a Trojan’s half mask and another a gruesome overseer of Penitentes.  They fly up into the crude rudimentary masts of the ship, themselves sails and windy-spirits.

Like the ghostly crew in Coleridge’s Rime of the Ancient Mariner, they’re somehow dead but alive enough to perform their professional duties: sailing.

Melville says, “Water and meditation are forever wedded.”  And it is the same with detailed, specific, variegated, verdigris-spotted, flayed, pitted, cast, cast out, cast away puppets or any other worthy objects, We only need gaze at them deeply to start our journey in.

Understandably, Codfish Wickerson loves and values the eloquent materials of his creations; wool, Osage orange, jute, burlap, stone, fur, tar, liver of sulfur, beeswax, iron, graphite, oak, ash, maple, Douglas Fir, brass copper, rock, salt, leather, Ferguson red enamel paint.  He’s read Stones, bones and skin:  Ritual and Shamanic Art with his whole body.  (He’s kept it by his sewing machine.)  He’s hung around with Head Shaman Jim Leedy, a notoriously bad influence on sane people and a great influence on crazy ones.  He’s traipsed over Canada (his homeland) and Newfoundland, Sutton Hoo and Argos, Chichen Itza and the banks of the River Styx.  Probably he had an invisible cameo role in Jim Jasmusch’s movie Ghost Dog where a guy builds a schooner on the roof of a tenement in Brooklyn and never intends to get it down physically.

Antonio Machado or Pablo Neruda or uh, some smart Welsh poet like that tells us something like, “Mankind has four things that are no good at sea.  Oars, sails, rudders and the fear of going down.”  That’s profound though irreverently cited.  Yet let’s partially end on that thought.  Let’s add that life is also like a mad-ass, Popeye the Sailor Man boat smeared deadly red and filled with ancient corn, home-made coins, adulterated salt and captained by Pirate puppets who’ll never dock any where they can’t get discount rum!!

Patty Catto


by PIERRE LEROY, s.j. 

The combination of priest and scientist is nothing new; 
but in his case what was really astonishing was his closeness 
to the earth and his deep feeling for the value of matter. 
People who were shocked by him never realised how deep 
lay the roots of this simultaneous love of God and of the 
world. c Throughout my whole life,' he wrote, c during 
every moment I have lived, the world has gradually been 
taking on light and fire for me, until it has come to envelop 
me in one mass of luminosity, glowing from within. . . The 
purple flush of matter fading imperceptibly into the gold 
of spirit, to be lost finally in the incandescence of a personal 
universe. . . . 

This is what I have learnt from my contact with the 
earth — the diaphany of the divine at the heart of a glowing 
universe, the divine radiating from the depths of matter