"Portage Slant: A Future In-Sight" is a multi-gallery art show that brings together so many things that are really great about Kent it's silly.
Actually, I take that back. It's not silly. It's incredibly useful, inventive and refreshing. When organizations that are concerned with our lives both economically and culturally come together to create projects that involve our community, I can only imagine these ideas echoing ever louder and longer in the minds of our friends, family and neighbors.
First you have the Kent State University's Downtown Gallery that always hosts well-made, interesting art from our region. It is headed by Gallery Director Anderson Turner.
Throw in The North Water Street Gallery, which serves as a headquarters for Standing Rock Cultural Arts and also continually offers intriguing art and events. It is run by co-founder and executive director Jeff Ingram.
And to top it all off, TransPORTAGE, a grass roots non-partisan initiative to envision the re-localization of the economy of Portage County, rounds out the collaboration with inspiration from organization leader and Patch blogger Rick Hawksley.
These three have put their heads together to create this show that is sure to inspire and engage the community in rethinking the future of Portage County.
Both Ingram and Turner are already planning next year's exhibit and both are excited about their current collaboration. "I love what they do in the community and have been a big fan of theirs for years," said Turner about The North Water Street Gallery.
"This collaboration is a good way to bridge the gap between KSU and The Downtown Kent community," said Ingram.
The North Water Street Gallery will present photos by Bradley Hart of all four seasons on the Portage Hike and Bike Trail along with a bike made by Ingram and a piece by Turner.
At the Downtown Gallery you will see a piece by Hawksley about Kent being "auto free" by 2013 as well as a piece by Eva Kwong titled The Gift, among others.
Kwongs piece prompts art viewers to become art makers and art givers. She will provide pieces of clay on two sides of a table that is separated by a platform. If you sit at one side of the table you can make an object out of clay and put it on top of the platform, offering it to who is on the other side.
This piece was inspired by the Native American tradition of the potlatch, which was a celebration of special events that included the sharing of food, music and dance as well as the giving of gifts to guests.
Kwong's piece aims to show how we are all interconnected in our community.
This show will be on view at the Downtown Gallery located at 141 E. Main St. Sept. 29 - Oct. 22.
You can catch it at The North Water Street Gallery located at 257 N. Water St. Oct. 6 - 22.
Both galleries will hold a simultaneous reception 5-7 p.m. on Oct 14.
This show has been co-sponsored by Family & Community Services, Hattie Larhlam , Kent State University’s School of Art Galleries, Standing Rock Cultural Arts , TANK (The Artists Network of Kent) and TransPORTAGE.