2010-01-14 / Editorial

Be creative, be unique, then share your art

• EDITORIAL •

There’s an art opening tonight at Town Hall. These are convivial events. We get to enjoy creations made by our friends and neighbors. These works are displayed in a great venue – a public place built with our money, thus multi-tasking our tax dollars.

Tonight’s Conanicut Island Art Association show opening is exciting for me because I have two photographs hanging in the exhibition. They are pictures that I shot during my travels in Ghana. I am more of a photojournalist than the avant-garde sort, so these pictures tell stories.

One picture is of a man working at subsistence gold mining. The man lives in a remote village and spends hours each day under the sweltering sun, panning in a played-out mine for valuable specks of gold. He only earns a few dollars a week, at best.

The other picture is of a woman dyeing cloth. Batik is common in west Africa. The process involves waxes and dyes, yielding colorful yards of decorated fabric often used to make clothing. The cloth is typically decorated with tribal icons and symbols.

I mention my own pictures in connection with this show because it was so simple to enter them. This is my first art show. I took my digital images to the Ben Thomas Gallery, where they were printed and framed. Then I delivered them to Town Hall, filled out the necessary paperwork and paid my small entry fee.

This show is one of many at the Town Hall sponsored by the CIAA. The exhibit provides an easy way for islanders to share their artistic efforts and demonstrates how important art is to our daily lives. More people should share their artistic efforts.

Another example of art taking center stage on the island is the recent purchase of a building by the Jamestown Arts Center. Although the group is still a ways from actually opening the building for use, JAC has already begun offering art classes at the Jamestown Gallery on Conanicut Avenue.

The Jamestown Arts Center met its first fund-raising goal and has moved on to stage two. If you haven’t yet contributed to the cause, please do so. The arts center will provide a new home on our island for creative types across a wide spectrum of mediums: ceramics, photography, painting, textiles, dance, drawing...the list is endless.

In addition to the Town Hall Gallery, the Jamestown Arts Center will have new spaces for exhibitions. Art truly adds zest to our lives.

— Jeff McDonough

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