Monday, March 31, 2014

How to Earn $500+ for Your Art!

Last week, the arts council hosted the Visual Arts Competition and had great success, receiving around 200 submissions from artists ages 11 to 18.  This week, the council is moving up an age bracket to 18 to 40 year olds in the inaugural 40 under 40 art competition with a Best in Show prize of $500!!  

This is a great opportunity for pre-professional and professional artists to add work to their portfolios and resumes while also networking each other at the grand opening reception!  Elon professor Michael Fels who has worked for Sol Lewitt, Robert Mangold, Donald Sultan, and Dutch artist Karel Appel, will be jurying the competition.  

All artists selected for judging will be on display at the Alamance Arts Council through June, and their work will be available for purchase.  Wondering how to enter? Follow the infographic below to take you through the steps to success. Comment on the blog or Facebook any additional questions!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Gastronomy: An Underrated Art Form

8 Reasons Why Cooking is an Art:

1. "Gastronomy," which refers to the art and science of good eating and the study of culinary customs and style, is derived from Ancient Greek word gastér, "stomach", and nómos "laws that govern" and therefore literally means "the art or law of regulating the stomach."

2. Cooking institutions and programs identify the education as the study and training of “Culinary Arts,” which includes instruction on both preparation and presentation.

3. Speaking of preparation-- the method behind the chopping, dicing and scooping techniques in order to form precise or organic shapes that will complement each other on the plate deals with the art elements of space, line, texture, value, and form. 

4. Food pictures are among the most popular on Instagram for a reason. I mean, just look at these masterpieces- they beg to be published.

5. Use of colors on the plate is among the most attractive appeals in the pictures- just another element of art skill required of the chefs.

6. French gastronomy was granted UNESCO status for its "art of the table," which includes recognition for not just the food preparation and presentation, but for the wine pairing, the aesthetics of the table setting, and the rituals of smelling and tasting the meal. 

7. In Barcelona, Ferran Adrià, the father of molecular gastronomy and the chef at the former elBulli (named the world’s best restaurant no less than five times) has transformed the restaurant into “a culinary, creative think tank” for chefs and culinary researchers.

8. The definition of art by Merriam-Webster is, “the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination.” After reading this list, it should be clear that a chef follows these criteria in his/her work.

So there you have it- cooking is an art that should be celebrated and is best done with friends. The Arts Council holds cooking classes monthly, inviting chefs in to teach the community the art.  (This month’s class will focus on the element of color, teaching how to prepare “A Colorful Dinner Party.”) Tonight is our annual Alamance a La Carte and you can bet we have photographers ready to showcase the masterpieces—as well as I’m sure some “foodographers” out there ready to take to Instagram. 

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Artist Q&A: Antje Shiflett

Visual Arts Competition For Young People

For those of you who have visited us at the Arts Council before, you know it’s a pretty neat place—in both senses of the word. So how did it get this messy? Well, the 56th Visual Arts Competition for Young People is this week, and, after all, kids & teens are never too far behind a mess, right? (kidding!)  

The Arts Council received over 200 art submissions from local middle and high schools and needed to use up every inch of space we have to accommodate the masterpieces. Who, might you ask, is in charge of looking through all of these to pick winners for each category? –

Meet Antje Shiflett:

Antje Shiflett hails from Germany and has now lived in North Carolinafor 37 years. She has been involved in the Alamance County Arts Council since the 80’s and this is her second time as the County Youth Art Contest Judge.  Shiflett is a painter herself, specializing in decorative paintings of flowers and landscapes.  Shiflett is a member of the Alamance Artisans Guild and the 4 Art Women group of painters.  Her work is sold in our own Picasso’s Gallery, Seaworthy Gallery, and Saxapahaw Artists Gallery.

What do you like best about the Visual Arts Competition?

“I think it is a great opportunity for students, and I am always very impressed with the teachers and school programs when I see the art. I also think it is great for bringing new guests to the Alamance Arts Council.”

What is the hardest part about judging?

“I am fortunate and honored to do this, but it is a huge responsibility.  I worry about the students who don’t win because I don’t want them to become discouraged and stop creating art. All the work is really very good." 

What do you look for and what stand outs to you among the work?

"I judge based on the four elements of design: value, shape, color, and line.  Of course landscapes and floral prints catch my eye because that is my style of work, but also because at this point they are so rare. "

What would you say about the trends you see in modern art today—have these students captured any?  

"Addiction" by 16 year-old Peyton Hinckle

“Oh, I find them fascinating! It is refreshing to see 21st century culture depicted on canvas and through mixed media, and these students certainly incorporate them. Some of the art I look at and can tell there is so much emotion and struggle that went into that, and it amazes me that they are able to express themselves so well in this outlet.  There is one piece, 'Addiction’ that was a standout piece for me.  The concept is so relevant and the depiction is so unique. I just can’t stop staring at it.” 

Want to see more?Don’t miss the reception to honor all contestants and announce winners Thursday March 20 from 6:30-8 p.m. at the Alamance County Arts Council! 

Friday, March 14, 2014

A little bit of Family Fun to take you into the weekend...

TGIF! Today is the third Friday of the month- do you know what that means? Tomorrow Family Fun will be at the Arts Council! If you get our newsletter, you may have read Family Fun's feature article in March's copy.  For those of you who don't know, Family Fun is an Arts Council program that is having quite a year.  It takes place the third Saturday each month from 10-11:30 a.m. and is open to everyone for just $3 per family at the door. 
Families get to make several crafts, visit with the FF Mascot- Arty the Mouse, and have the chance  to win a door prize.  
Arty the mouse with Family Funn'rs
Snowman made from plastic cups

The Family Fun staff scours Pinterest and other sources for the most innovative craft ideas, almost always re-purposing recyclables or household objects!  They have also started taking their crew and crafts on the road to local organizations and after-school programs (contact the Arts Council if you would like to request them). 

Owl from pinecone & cottonballs

Last month's Family Fun Day was cancelled due to the snow, so tomorrow will be double the fun to make up for it. We hope to see you there!  


Other events this weekend in the Alamance area:

Seussical Jr. at the Paramount Theater
Showtimes: Friday, Saturday 7 p.m.; Sunday matinee 2 p.m.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Welcome to Our Blog!

The Alamance Arts Council  has started a blog that will follow the staff at the Council and through the community as we connect you with the art and artists our organization promotes.  Besides council news and community events, our blog will cover an array of fun and useful features from Q&A’s to artist resources to art inspirations.   

We’re new at this, so please lend us a hand.... Here’s how you can help (hint: It has to do with pARTicipation)- 

1. Share us with your friends. We love meeting new people (hence the open-door policy at the Captain White House) so if you know someone who may be interested in what we have to say, copy and paste this link to send us their way!

2. Contribute to the conversationand leave us comments—don’t be shy, you’re reading our thoughts and we’d like to hear yours too.

Check back tomorrow for a behind-the-scenes look at the Council preparing for the County Youth Art Contest reception and read an exclusive Q&A with the juror Antje Shiflett.