Thursday, May 2, through Monday, July 1
Quad City Arts International Airport Gallery, 2200 69th Avenue, Moline IL
Hand-crafted works by Midwestern artists from both sides of the Mississippi will be on display at Moline's Quad City International Airport Gallery from May 2 through July 1, with the airport showcasing sculpture, tapestries, mixed media, and more from artists Tim Kowalczyk of Minonk, Illinois, Jan Friedman of Iowa City, and Kelly Schrader of Davenport.
Describing his sculpting process, Kowalczyk's tongue-in-cheek response is “I make stuff out of stuff that looks like other stuff.” In other words, he uses clay and glazes to create sculptures that look amazingly like the real object that he replicates. Kowalczyk has the ability to make clay look like metal, cardboard, rust, or even plastic, and through this process, he makes the viewer look at something that would normally be overlooked as garbage or packaging. As Kowalczyk writes in his Artist Statement: “Pathetic, absurd, antiquated, banal or even garbage are words that best describe the objects I am drawn to. These types of objects hold my attention because of the stories they can tell and what they can mean. Many times I find objects at thrift stores, yard sales or the side of the road. I am collector, picker and poet that sculpts, forms, designs and constructs sculptures with sense of purpose, priority, and preciousness. I want people to see the beauty and narrative that is held within simple overlooked objects.”
Lauded for her woven tapestries, Friedman has been weaving since 1974, and received her M.A. in Textile Design from the University of Iowa in 1980. She has conducted workshops in weaving, color, and dyeing across the United States, while her tapestries and framed collage pieces have been featured in numerous invitational and juried exhibits and have been commissioned for both private homes and corporate collections. Friedman incorporates the colors and textures of nature in her woven tapestries and fiber collages, intertwining a variety of found objects from nature – including leaves, twigs, and stones – with vividly dyed yarns to create rich, geometric wall hangings. As Friedman explains in her Artist Statement: “I want these pieces to entice you to take a closer look – at surfaces that vary in texture – at bold color combinations and slow chromatic gradations. I hope this work evokes a response from you, whether it is spiritual, emotional, or simply curiosity about content and techniques.”
A project specialist with Quad City Arts, Schrader’s mixed-media work can be described as an exploration of art’s ability to imitate life. She uses a broad range of conventional art materials, in addition to objects she encounters during her everyday life, and is influenced by artists such as Rauschenberg, Man Ray, and Duchamp, whose works frequently featured non-art and everyday materials. Schrader believes that art and life cannot be separated, and therefore everything that exists in life can possibly be used within her work. She holds a B.A. in Fine and Studio Arts/Marketing Design from Virginia Tech, and common themes explored by Schrader include time, process, identity, and image.
The Quad City International Airport Gallery is located opposite the airport's gift shop and restaurant, there is a $1 fee for parking, and more information on the May 2 through July 1 exhibit with artworks by Jan Friedman, Tim Kowalczyk, and Kelly Schrader is available by calling (309)793-1213 extension 108 or visiting QuadCityArts.com.