Friday, February 17, 2012

TAC-KC: 02.17.12

Tracy's Art Calendar — Kansas City for February 17 and 18, 2012
West Bottoms Resurgence/Convergence Friday;
KCAC Auction on Saturday

Archie Scott Gobber, I Am Too High, painting, 2012, is part of the group exhibition, I Aim Too High, opening this evening at Dolphin.
Image: courtesy of the artist and gallery and photographed by E.G. Schempf; may not be reproduced without permission

The Green Door, Post Office, Dirt Gallery, and even a bit later, one of the locations of Fahrenheit—these are the spaces* that formed the core of the West Bottoms galleries in the late 1990s and early 2000s during my introduction to the Kansas City art scene.

*(among others that I have either forgotten the names of and/or, admittedly, am not going to spend 40 minutes digging through old postcard to recall; sadly, the Internet traces of them are all but gone)

Back then, the 12th Street Bridge was literally hazardous. Back then, you could feel "quite edgy and cool" going down, down into the "maybe it will flood," "it sure smells of sewage," "isn't there a prison-release center just around the corner?" West Bottoms (Obviously, we all were younger, so, at least for me, everything was fun, fresh, and new.)

Back then, that's where the Valentine's Day Ball and some Mardi Gras events were. Back then, you could buy a Jesse Small bullet-riddled ceramic ship for less than $50.

Granted, in the West Bottoms, there are still a few sort-of raw-type spaces, studios, and shops on the north side of the tracks. I'm being literal again: a trip to the openings then meant fun street parties where the law was absent and where you were playing only a few feet away from the railways, with freight cars churning past that punctuated the conversation or blocked you from crossing. Graffiti art still rolls by on a regular basis.

Tonight, though, when you come down to witness back-from-New-York Bill Brady's inaugural exhibition at his new Kansas City gallery (covered in The Kansas City Star not only just a few days ago on the 15th, but also on February 10th and last October when he announced it); to see the latest two exhibitions at (also white-cube) Dolphin, a deliberate Crossroads gallery transplant in 2009 by one of the Crossroads District's founders, Jim O'Brien; or to see how the younger-set's plucky and relevant Plug Projects's first solo (and transforming) exhibition is coming along, you won't have to cross any rails. All of this is south of 12th Street, close to the Kemper Arena.

You might be at odds to find parking spaces, though, so carpooling is recommended.

And you can even find a very nice restaurant* nearby and visit artists' studios in the Livestock Exchange Building, all within a stone's throw of each other.

*(R Bar; there are at least three nice spots, but the Genessee Royale is not open at night; I have never been to the Golden Ox, though I have met the owner, and he meets my instincts as being quite straightforward and trustworthy.)

Times have changed, and I welcome the solidification of Kansas City's visual artists' community, even if the owners of Art Chicago (who also bought out the NEXT fair) decided to ditch it at the last minute because buyers are (I'm paraphrasing) seemingly only concentrated on the coasts. Let's go, Midwest!

Maybe the actual near-center of the country will be the next and longer-lasting Chicago? We both have institutes of art, after all (though theirs has a graduate program. I'm curious whether anyone has opinions on such, but for now: why we're here or skimmed down to read—the calendar : )


Alien Contact and Cultural Imagination
Electromediascope Film Series: Baltimore by Isaac Julien and The Changing Same, Dark Matter 1, The Green Dress, and The Fullness of Time by Cauleen Smith
at The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, in Atkins Auditorium, 4525 Oak Street, Kansas City, Missouri: 816-751-1278

Showing: February 17, 7 p.m.
Admission is free, but tickets are required; please click here to sign up
Winter series: February 10, 17, and 24

East West Shift to the Middle
Part 1: Donald Beachler, Katherine Bernhardt, Huma Bhabha, Julia Chiang, Anne Eastmen, Brian Fahlstrom, Jason Fox, Tomoo Gokita, Rashawn Griffin, KAWS, Michael Lazarus, Art Miller, Erik Parker, Alexander Ross, Jaimie Warren, Wallace Whitney, and Michael Williams
at Bill Brady / KC, 1505 Gennessee Street, Kansas City, Missouri: 816-527-0090

Inagural Exhibition Opening Reception: February 16,
Open Wednesday-Saturday: 11 a.m.-6 p.m., through April 7, 2012

I Aim Too High
Anthony Baab, Laura Berman, Robert Josiah Bingaman, James Brisfield, Mike Erickson, Archie Scott Gobber, Tom Gregg, Chris Johnason, Wilbur Niewald, Lee Piechocki, Eric Sall, Aaron Storck, Matt Wycoff, and Andrzej Zielinski, curated by John O'Brien and David Collins
at Dolphin, 1600 Liberty Street, Kansas City, Missouri: 816-842-4415

Opening Reception: February 17, 5-10 p.m.
Open Tuesday-Friday: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturday: noon-5 p.m., through April 17, 2012

MULTI-CHANNEL: an exhibition in flux
Andrew Jacob Schell
at Plug Projects, 1613 Genessee Street, Kansas City, Missouri: 646-535-7584

Intermediate Opening: February 17, 6-9 p.m.
Open Saturday: 10 a.m.-5 p.m., through March 3, 2012

Now Showing: Winter Happy Hour
with featured artists John Freeman and Deborah Drake Huff
at the offices of the Arts Council of Metropolitan Kansas City, pARTnership Place, 906 Grand Boulevard, Suite 10B, Kansas City, Missouri

Winter Happy Hour: February 14, 5-7 p.m.
Free and includes refreshments: Please RSVP at this link
Complementary parking available in the 928 UMB garage, south of Arts Council building

Open Studios: mariauroraMaria Creyts
in Livestock Exchange Building, 1600 Genessee, #516, Kansas City, Missouri: 816-221-4501

Open February 17, noon-7:30 p.m.

Public Domain
Michael Sinclair
at Dolphin, 1600 Liberty Street, Kansas City, Missouri: 816-842-4415

Opening Reception: February 17, 5-10 p.m.
Open Tuesday-Friday: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturday: noon-5 p.m., through April 17, 2012


2012 Annual Art Auction
at Kansas City Artists Coalition, 201 Wyandotte Street, Kansas City, Missouri: 816-421-5222

Auction Night: February 18, doors open at 6 p.m. and starts the silent auction, which runs through 7:45 p.m.; the live auction begins at 8 p.m.
Tickets: $25; reserve seat tickets can be purchased for an additional $100

And, of course, you remember, that Saturday, plenty of other places with exhibitions opened on last First Friday (and others) are open; some galleries, such as the Belger Arts Center (and Red Star Studios on the ground floor), Leedy-Voulkos Art Center, and Sherry Leedy Contemporary Art, are open either daily or starting Thursdays into the weekend. Everyone (except, on non-research-recall, the Unity Temple's hall gallery, which, I have lost touch with, sadly, are closed Sunday and Monday as a rule).

PS, All opinions here are my own, and no one edits this, so any errors are also solely mine. Corrections are appreciated:

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