Red Door Project to Debut Pop-Up Art Exhibit at Final Friday

Art sometimes has the effect of bringing people together. Sometimes it opens avenues for new connections and experiencing new things. Ten years ago, local artists were challenged to create a piece of art centered on a red door. That event a decade ago led to the beginning of close friendships that endure today.

That is the story gallery founder, Barbara Hauser, tells regarding that original Final Friday event in 2004; and while she was not leading the gallery known as The Project back then she was inspired to launch an event of her own.

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“Everyone sees art differently – and everyone deserves to have their work featured and appreciated,”  Hauser stated in a prepared release. “I’ve never considered myself an artist, but when I had the chance to see my work on display at a similar type gallery and have it purchased I realized that I wanted to create a space that celebrates the artist in all of us.”

The Red Door Project is a pop-up art exhibit that breath new life into this decade-old endeavor at the upcoming Final Friday in Over-the-Rhine on February 28.  Inspired by the idea that art is the eye of the beholder, Hauser says the gallery features artwork by dozens of Cincinnatians from many different backgrounds and walks of life.

“I’m sure everyone will interpret the theme differently. It could be a painting of a moon cycle or a photograph of a bicycle,” noted Hauser. “And really, that’s the beauty of it. You won’t know what to expect when you walk through the door, but you may find yourself walking out with a new piece of art to enjoy.”

The Red Door Project debuts this Final Friday’s festivities  at 1232 Vine Street – the storefront previously occupied by Joesph-William Home. The gallery will be open from 6pm to 10pm.

There is still time for submissions, which are due by February 22, and can be dropped off at the event location between 11AM and 3PM. This month the theme is “cycle” which is defined as a series of events that are regularly repeated in the same order.

Photograph provided.

“Courses” brings food and community together on Main Street

CS13 is an art and performance space, located at 1420 Main Street, that hosts concerts, monthly reading series, and bi-monthly art projects/exhibitions. These projects often engage with overlaps in art practice and everyday life. Over the 2 year run of the gallery, CS13 has become more than just a collective that curates and hosts, transforming into an art collective that also produces projects of our own, also under the name CS13.

Paralleling their ongoing interest in overlaps of art and the everyday, this June CS13 presents a month-long project that looks to the comforts, history and politics of the kitchen, emulating the format and layout of cooking lessons and TV shows as a vehicle for discussion driven presentations by local community members. This project will consist of a working kitchen built in the gallery that will double as a meeting space and lecture hall, from which a weekly series of talks and demonstrations will be programmed and led by local community members, merchants and non-profits. Focused on the social structures implicit in recipes, cooking traditions and food based services, COURSES hopes to provide a unique community space that will offer both free storytelling, educational programming and shared meals prepared on site.

“We constructed the the kitchen and programmed all the events, but the details of each dinner/discussion are left up to the guest cook/speaker,”CS13 collaborator Aaron Walker explains “[The forum] gives the speaker a platform to highlight personal topics of interest and to host informal, intimate cooking demonstrations and dinner conversation.”

The crew at CS13 hopes to break down the barriers that some may feel when dealing with art by presenting it through the familiar lens of food. Many different kinds of folks feel comfortable interacting with Cincinnati’s robust selection of dining establishments. But art spaces, for many, are conceptually distant. “COURSES” is a fun way to bring those worlds together and imagine a more integrated and accessible creative community. Meanwhile we hope to highlight the important community-oriented work that a variety of organizations have been doing and provide an outlet for learning and engaging with a these provoking, forward thinking trades/projects that many people might not be aware of.

This coming week’s “COURSES” events include:

Final Friday, June 24th from 5-8 PM: Ufuk Adak
UFUK ADAK is a University of Cincinnati PhD student from Izmir, Turkey, will lead an informal discussion about Turkish and Ottoman food cultures as he prepares a popular dish or two. Possible topics of conversation include the appropriating of Ottoman court cuisine by the masses and contemporary Turkish food culture.

Saturday, June 25th from 5-8 PM: Vicki Mansoor and Bill Brown
VICKI MANSOOR:
Mansoor is part of an evolving initiative, Homemeadow Song Farm, where participants are active in areas of land stewardship, gardening, nutrition, education, artistic processes and cultural renewal.

Vicki has invited Susan Gilbert, a gifted storyteller and artisan and Jose Navales of Pura Vita, a pop-up taqueria in Dayton KY, to support this program. They will lead a cooking demonstration centered around the history of corn in the U.S. Corn from Homeadow Song Farm will be ground and used to make tamales.

BILL BROWN: Bill Brown is both the author and the publisher of “Fenced Off, Obscured or Painted Over” (Colossal Books, Cincinnati: 2011), which is a collection of photographs of murals in community gardens in the Lower East Side of Manhattan (NYC) that Bill took in 1997 and 1998.

Established as long ago as 1972, and the survivors of Mayor Giuliani’s attempts in the 1990s to have them all bulldozed and sold off, these community gardens in NYC still bring people together who want to better their relations with their neighbors and the earth itself. Small-scale food production is the key to these gardens, which are oases in the middle of one of the least-green metropolises in the world.

For more information, check out CS13 on Facebook.
Courses + Cincinnati Cooks! picture provided.

New PopShop celebrates Cincinnati crafters in a DIY space

Those passing by 1301 Main Street have noticed cardboard and hot pink ducktape decorating a previously empty storefront. The new space is decked out for this Friday’s PopShop – a new pop up shop coinciding with March’s Final Friday gallery walk that brings visitors into the Pendleton Art Center, down Main Street, and over to Vine via 12th and 13th.

The new space plays host to 11 local entrepreneurs and designers, who will have their handmade and vintage housewares, accessories, clothing, and other assorted intricacies for sale. Selling a wide variety of objects d’art – from bow shaped fanny packs to jewelry designed by women in Over-the-Rhine and everything in between.

The idea for a temporary space that allows pop-culture creativity to bloom was conceived by a trifecta of local women already involved in Over-the-Rhine’s burgeoning arts scene. Jessie Cundiff, a collaborator at MUD studio, Catherine Richards, art director and program manager of the Future Blooms program, and Tamia Stinson, owner and managing editor of StyleSample magazine. After meeting at a Merchants on Main event, the co-founders wanted to open the space as a way for small business owners to try out the Over-the-Rhine location before fully committing to a gallery or retail space.

“This is perfect for us,” said Rosie Kovacs, owner of the Brush Factory. “We want to test the waters down there [OTR].” Combining many retailers into one space, not unlike the popular Holiday Shop on Vine Street in December, decreases the stress of one person paying rent, and makes the new space a one stop shop for visitors to see something new.

The space is still getting some finishing touches, but features window installations, a chandelier made of recycled materials, and furnishings constructed from found objects. The PopShop ladies decided on a deconstructed, Do-it-Yourself theme, emphasizing the pack and go nature of the pop-up shop for the interior of the store. They took inspiration from innovative storefronts like Anthropologie that utilize found and recycled materials to create ethereal, interesting windowscapes.

The PopShop will be open from 5pm to 10pm on Friday, March 25, and features an opening reception with music, treats, and an opportunity for shoppers to get crafty with an interactive DIY area. Saturday, March 26 the PopShop is open from 11am to 6 pm, with vendors on hand demonstrating their art, and a trunk show beginning at 5 pm for Dress for Success from the 4th Street Boutique. All proceeds from the sale of 4th Street Boutique merchandise will go directly to the charitable program that assists low-income women in acquiring appropriate attire for job interviews.

“We’re most excited about the opportunity to collaborate with amazingly creative folks in and around Cincinnati–there’s so much talent that deserves a voice,” said co-founder Tamia Stinson. “Our hope is that PopShop will serve as an introduction between independent entrepreneurs and Over-the-Rhine, and a foot in the door for those wanting to set up their business there.”

The Final Friday PopShop is located at 1301 Main Street and is open on Friday and Saturday, March 25-26. Vendors include Dulcet Design, Hark + Hark, Jessie Cundiff, Carla Rabbit, the Brush Factory, Saint Lexi, Dulcet Design, Katie Ferncez, the Sarah Center, and 4th Street Boutique.

Myriad of events at Final Friday offer fun start to weekend

Head down to the Over-the-Rhine arts district tomorrow, February 25 for an evening of interactive and interesting activities during February’s Final Friday gallery walk.

* The Urban Expansion Development office at 1344 Vine Street will be hosting a Grand Opening and Art Show with wine, cheese, music and work from three different artists – Molly Reckman from Chicago, Linda Loschavo from Mt. Adams, and photography from Joshua Timmermans.

* The YES Gallery at 1417 Main Street will have an interactive art display from 6-10pm – a 24 foot mural that visitors can help to color, using 5 foot paint markers. The artists will be giving out free screen prints by the artists with regular sized markers.

* Rumor has it window shoppers will be in for a surprise on the 1200 block of Vine. Be sure to wander by between 7pm and 8pm.

* 4U Fashion Boutique and Sebastian Rey Skin Awareness will be hosting an organic and natural skin care demonstration from 5-9pm at the boutique, located at the corner of 12th and Jackson Streets. Sebastian Rey will be hosting product demonstrations throughout the evening, and product samples, refreshments and music will be available through the evening.

* After a terrible storm canceled the Bockfest Parade in 1998, participants have held a “Precipitation Retaliation” – burning a snowman effigy to ward off any potential bad weather for Bockfest weekend. This year’s party will be at Grammer’s bar at 9pm.

All of these events are in addition to the rest of the galleries, restaurants and bars that will be open on Main Street, Vine Street and numerous other places in between. Kick off your weekend by taking in some art, music, performances, food and libations in the renaissance that is Over-the-Rhine. And most importantly, don’t let anyone tell you that there’s nothing to do in Cincinnati.

Final Friday photo provided by 5chw4r7z.