Heights Arts goes 'Public' with March exhibition

Illustration from Science Book, by Joe Lanzilotta. [image courtesy Joe Lanzilotta]

Design and illustration continue to expand beyond their traditional roles in publishing and advertising. Influenced by graffiti and new technologies in animation and gaming, illustrators create stories about world issues, popular culture, even trends in daily life. Artists take issues out of context and reexamine them in previously unconsidered perpectives, challenging viewers to assess their own part in the whole. 

PUBLIC CONSCIENCE through graphics and illustration, which opens Friday, March 3, 6–9 p.m., in the Heights Arts main gallery, examines these trends among Northeast Ohio artists. Co-curated by artists Leslye Arian and Dave King, the group exhibition showcases the work of Laura and Gary Dumm, Derek Hess, Brian Jasinski, Nancy Schwartz Katz, Milan Kecman, Jake Kelly, George Kocar, Joe Lanzilotta, Angela Oster, Josh Usmani, Justin Michael Will, and Sean Higgins and Nicholas Rezabek of the Bubble Process.

Co-curator King noted, “People see the work of illustrators and graphic artists in print form but they don't see the original work. Because of this disconnect, illustrators and graphic designers are frequently not viewed as artists. An opportunity to have these works in a gallery show allows the public to see them in a different light.”

The unique Heights Arts event Ekphrastacy, where artists discuss their work and poets read pieces composed in response to the exhibition, will take place on Thursday, March 30, 7 p.m.,for this show. 

Opening Friday, March 17 in the spotlight gallery, Kate Snow’s Grid Series: Communities seeks to explore and celebrate not only the physical community that makes up Cleveland Heights, but also the seemingly disparate communities of fine art and digital media—by providing a platform for engagement and interaction. The interactive exhibition includes a collection of framed gouache and graphite paintings on handmade paper, as well as an integrated digital piece. A short panel discussion on April 6 at 7 p.m. with Kate Snow, Eagan Rackley (game developer), Ian Faleer (musician) and Stephanie Frankiewicz (graphic designer) will examine how the digital medium is transforming the way viewers experience art.

For more information on community arts programs, including music and literary events, visit www.heightsarts.org or call the nonprofit arts organization at 216-371-3457.

Mary Ryan

Mary Ryan is on staff at Heights Arts, a nonprofit community arts organization.

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Volume 10, Issue 3, Posted 6:32 PM, 02.28.2017