When Art Attacks Print
News/Features - Feature Stories
Tuesday, 08 May 2001 18:00
This Friday’s gallery hop in The District of Rock Island has a more aggressive flavor than past installments with the theme “Art Attack.” The quarterly event kicks off at 5 p.m. and runs through 10 p.m., featuring dozens of artists.

“We’re trying something new with this one,” said Jennifer Fowler, executive director of The District. “We’re trying to put art in as many places as possible. … We’re trying to be as in-your-face as possible with art.”

The Open Air Art Attack will feature nearly 30 artists showing and selling their work in a street-fair atmosphere under the Great River Plaza’s permanent tents. The East Stage of the plaza will offer a live blues jam.

Fowler said that in the past she’s been approached about putting on an art fair in The District, but she didn’t want to intrude on other local events. “This is our way of putting on a mini art fest,” she said.

The site of the most indoor activity might just be Peanut Gallery Fine Arts, where the Central Iowa Women’s Caucus for Art will be presenting a group show. Patricia Innis and Laurie Hall will show photographs, Ingrid Bogdaniwiz will display etchings, and Sarah Jane Boyd will offer shell and mussel art. Performers include Chinese author and playwright Ava Sue, dancing drummer Carla Simons, and dancer Cherie Sampson. Certainly one of the more interesting works will be Sampson’s collaboration with painter, installation artist, and performance artist Deanne Wortman: “Her Blue Sea Fire,” a telling of the first canto of the Finnish epic poem “The Kalevala.” in movement, words, chant, and sculpture. The poem explores an origin myth in Finnish folklore.

Glass Impact will be hosting glass-artist demonstrations, while the Blue Cat will have glass artisan Cyndy Gilroy, and Fowler Studio will feature glass-blowing by Mark Fowler and Shaun Graves. Other sites with artists include Quad City Arts, Gere Dismer Architects, All Kinds of People, and WHBF-TV4.

Public art will be everywhere, nearly impossible to avoid. That’s the whole idea behind Art Attack. Terry Farmer will be performing at Theo’s Java Club, and CMBT will be promoting upcoming shows in the Great River Plaza as well. You can also catch regular performances at RIBCO, Comedy Sportz, and Circa 21.

And of course, there are also the creative (if more crass) attempts to lure customers in – “pizza dough art” at Huckleberry’s, “tasty sandwich art” at Blimpie, “bold and exciting hair exhibition” at Hairy Ideas, 1960s atmosphere at Nicola Gallery & Framing, and a Saturday Night Fever-themed evening at Iris Garden.