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I’m honored to be one of several artists to be in the upcoming show in December “W/O Limits: Art, Chronic Illness, & Disability” exhibition curated by Megan Alves and Mindy Tousley of the Artists Archives of the Western Reserve. The Artists Archives has been awarded a grant from the Cuyahoga County Board of Developmental Disabilities where the organization will be able to incorporate strategies to increase accessibility with among others the use of braille and a 3d printed tactile sculpture for the visually impaired.
Megan asked if I would be interested in doing this for the exhibition and I accepted, excited with the anticipation of revisiting shifting into 3 dimensions and also working again with Think[Box] at Case Western Reserve University. I had worked with Think[box] in 2015 where I printed 2 sculptures I call MODEL CITIZENS.
For the W/O LIMITS exhibition, In progress is a 3d Hash symbol with elements that make it accessible to the visually impaired. A modular system of 80 individually printed blocks (each block 2″ high) connected together and alternating between hash symbols in negative relief and positive relief form a bold singular Hash symbol. Primary colors and black and white provide bold contrast between the parts, making them more visible. The deep cuts into each block project shadows making it both tactile and with a sharply delineated pattern also making it more visible.
As an art object unto itself, the hash symbol with its use in hash-tagging represents our modern times, good and bad; where data is turned into meta-data; where information is categorized and made searchable; where so many find their voices amongst the billions of souls vying to be seen and heard to share joys, beauty, injustices, sadness…and so much more, elevating our humanity. But other voices use it to tear down our humanity and the beauty of our multicultural world.
Maria Neil Art Project – A project by John Farina and Adam Tully celebrates their 10th Anniversary with a show that opened last night. They have been a special presence in the Cleveland art community over the years with their collecting and patronage of the areas artists and with MNAP bringing their love of the arts to the public. They asked the artists who exhibited in their exhibitions to submit a small work. My work is in great company with the wonderful other artists work.
I was honored when they asked me to have a solo exhibition in 2015. My show with them titled BITS IN PIECES included among the 20 plus digital prints something new for me, 3d printed sculptures titled MODEL CITIZENS. As part of their mission, they encourage artists to flex their muscles and bring something special hence the word “Project” in the name. The challenge led me to producing my first 3d work since my architecture career ended in 2004. I am again working in 3d on a 3d printed piece for the upcoming show “W/O Limits” at the Artists Archives of the Western Reserve.
For the 10th Anniversary show, I created this small work, CIRCULUX REDUX, uv cured inkjet on cnc cut acrylic, 15″ x 13.8″. A child of the 60s, the analog days, I played 45 rpm records. Arranged at the corner points of a hexagon, the central elements are a nod to those plastic adapters you put on the spindle to play 45 rpms.
MariaNeilArtProject.com 15517 Waterloo Rd, Cleveland, OH 44110 Opening Reception: Friday, June 3rd 5:00-8:00p.m.On view through July 2022. Hours by appointment only. Please send an email to schedule an appointment. email@example.com
This artwork is about the precariousness of balance. Balance is a constant in life. We all struggle to achieve it. When life and the world is in balance, existence benefits. Unfortunately for many across the globe, life is out of balance and suffering ensues. As a species, humans, with all the technology and knowledge we have accrued, still, in the 21st century, we seem to be as unbalanced as ever. The war in Ukraine demonstrates the brutality and evil that still stains humanity as it is putting millions out of balance.
The 1982 film Koyaanisqatsi spoke to this. Koyaanisqatsi is the Hopi Indian word for “life out of balance”. Filmed over many years, with a haunting score by Phillip Glass, the film shows the collision of the urban environment and technology against nature. The Hopi believe that nature was to be respected and protected. The industrial revolution and the rise of technology did bring balance on many fronts with better living conditions and medicine that cured once deadly diseases, but at a great cost that threatens the viability of a sustainable and livable planet.
On a personal level, having balance in my life is an everyday endeavor to strive for. Some days I do better than others in its pursuit. My art making is a balancing act as I counteract the pain I’m in with the joy of creating as they simultaneously intermingle. I think these counteracting forces merge together in balance and brings together what is needed to create.
I’m honored that my artwork Quadrans Circuli I has found a home at the Cray Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Sears Think[Box] at Case Western Reserve University. On Floor 6, the Cloud L. Cray Jr. & Sally Hunter Cray Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship houses resources for turning an invention into a market-ready product: the Tech Transfer Office, Intellectual Property Venture Clinic, Burton D. Morgan Suite for Entrepreneurship and CWRU LaunchNET for business planning and mentorship.
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