Chit-Chat for the Holidays

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First off, I would like to take this opportunity to say that I hate Nashville.

Secondly, with the imminent closing of the Hi-Tone, Memphis may be getting closer and closer to be an art city first, music city second. Regardless of what I just said last week.

Anne Siems
  • Anne Siems

Thirdly, I am nowhere near finished with my holiday shopping. But our Festivus pole does look great in the living room. To be honest, I have not even started, and the only present I have to buy is for Georgia. I am thinking about getting her a gift certificate to Stewart Brothers Hardware, Boscos, The Edge Coffeehouse, or an Anne Siems painting. She loves those things. Really, I love those things. I love telling people this. Hint, hint. And when I get invited to speak at a Pecha Kucha again, I will be sure to talk about these things.

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Speaking of Pecha Kucha, Crosstown Arts is hosting their fifth installment of this event. An unpronounceable word that is Japanese for “chit-chat”. Originally scheduled to take place in their new exhibition space at 430 Cleveland St, which is still under construction, they are instead having the event in their current space at 427 N. Watkins, which is directly behind the new space. These are generally pretty interesting events, especially the first one, where I talked about how great of an artist I am. You can watch the video where I talk all fast and brilliant by clicking here.

Here is the line up for tonight’s event: Aviva Rahmani, Dennis Lynch, Lester Julian Merriweather, Emma Self, Pamela Kelly, Esq., Cedar Lorca Nordbye, Michael Flanagan, and Craig Wiener.

This should be an entertaining and informative night of presentations. If the presenter is boring do not worry, each presenter shows 20 images and each image is displayed for 20 seconds. So, you will not have to sit through something terrible for long. But, I do not think this is going to be the case tonight.

Aviva Rahmani is an environmental artist living in New York who will be exhibiting in the upcoming Memphis Social exhibition.

Lester Julian Merriweather
  • Lester Julian Merriweather

Lester Julian Merriweather is an artist and director of Fogelman Contemporary at the University of Memphis, a new exhibition space that is scheduled to open very soon. He may talk about the space. But, I hope he doesn’t. His work is too good for him not to mention, dealing with subject matters and themes that are important to the history and culture of Memphis. He is one of those artists that are living in Memphis that more people need to know about. Everyone needs to know about.

Pamela Kelly is starting a Memphis Chapter of the Black Girls Code. According to their website, Black Girls Code is increasing the number of women of color in the digital space by empowering girls of color ages 7 to 17 to become innovators in STEM fields. Essentially, she is introducing programming and technology to a new generation of coders. It sounds pretty amazing.

Cedar Lorca Nordbye
  • Cedar Lorca Nordbye

Cedar Lorca Nordbye is an artist and professor at the University of Memphis. For those who do not know Cedar, I can tell you, I am afraid he will be unable navigate within a 20 second per-image timeframe. If he can, he will be talking about his extremely fluid multi-media installations that combine painting, sculpture, and printmaking.

I have never met Craig Wiener, but he recently bought a painting of mine. So, he has impeccable taste.

There have been several new alternative spaces to open in Memphis recently, Beige, Southfork and now Tops Gallery.

Seth Kelly
  • Seth Kelly

Tops Gallery is located at 400 South Front and is open by appointment only. They are having their second opening Friday Night 6-8 p.m. for Seth Kelly — Dark Energy.

There can never be enough alternative spaces to open in Memphis. With the exception of Marshall Art and Material, they really only have a shelf life of about 18 to 24. So the more that can open, even for a short period of time, the better. (Maybe some recent U of M and MCA grads can pool their money and start a space.) Hopefully, this is not the case with these three spaces. Though they each just opened within the last couple of months, they are off to a great start.

That is it for this week. Enjoy your holiday parties, see and buy some art, and Go Grizzlies. Speaking of the Grizzlies, I love Tony Allen. I wish I could give him to Georgia for Christmas. And by Georgia, I mean me.

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