Vis-à-Vis Society Poem-Survey Findings

VisaVisSociety-Graphs-Henry-GradHappyHour

At our Graduate Student Happy Hour on January 10th, we had the pleasure of hosting the Vis-à-Vis Society. During the event they conducted experimental poetry using write-in survey questions. Here are the composite poems from their findings!

Composite poem from the Vis-à-Vis Society. The Vis-à-Vis Society’s poem-survey asked people to choose an object in the Mitchell Exhibition “Like a Valentine,” listen closely, and then write down what the object said.

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Holiday Popup Shop

Check out this interview with Tova, the Director of Favorite Art Projects, who is running the Henry Holiday Popup Shop. The Henry Holiday Popup Shop is held in conjunction with Like A Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell. The artists featured in the Popup have contributed work inspired by Jeffry Mitchell and his work. Tova said that the Popup shop came about organically with contributions from Northwest Artists who are inspired by the work of Jeffry Mitchell. Tova asked the artists to contribute work that is outside of their normal bailiwick and the result is an amazing amalgamation of art with a Northwest feel. Check out Tova talking about some of the art here:

The physical shop is open Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday: 12 to 4
Thursday and Fri: 12 to 8
The virtual shop is always open.

Great for last minute gifts!

Bear Hug

BEAR HUG.

This Sunday, the Henry is hosting an afternoon of camaraderie as we gather to celebrate Seattle’s BFF, Jeffry Mitchell, on the occasion of the exhibition, Like a Valentine. The afternoon will feature tours led by friends of Jeffry at 2pm followed by an afternoon reception and chainsaw bear sale. Choose from a selection of handcrafted chainsaw bears selected by Jeffry and Claude Zervas from locations around the Olympic Peninsula.

Sunday, December 9
1:00 – 3:00 PM
Molly’s Cafe & Sculpture Court
FREE for Henry Members, Students, and UW Staff & Faculty
$10 General Audience

In conjunction with Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell,  Favorite Art Projects has created a Popup Shop in the Henry with art from Northwest artists inspired by Jeffry Mitchell.

The physical shop is open Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday: 12 to 4
Thursday and Fri: 12 to 8
The virtual shop is always open.

Spontaneous Haiku inspired by Bear Hug:

animal inside
the articulate chainsaw
bear hug, bear hug. YES!

And a little diddy, sung to the tone of “Reading Rainbow”:

Bear Hug,
All of the hugs,
Bear hug.

Faculty Focus: Claire Cowie

Come to the Henry tomorrow for this month’s Focus Tour! The 30 minute tour will be led by UW School of Art faculty and artist Claire Cowie who will guide visitors through Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell. The tour starts at 12 and will leave you with enough time to grab a sammy at Molly’s all within your lunch hour!

From painting to sculpture to photogravure, the work produced by Seattle-based artist Claire Cowie conjures up a bizarre menagerie, replete with composite creatures and exotic locales. Haunting disembodied figures populate her landscapes; they appear at once otherworldly and familiar as they beckon the eye and the imagination. Her collages, watercolors, and prints recall Chinese and Japanese landscape painting traditions. Using a minimum of strokes she achieves deep spaces, producing dreamlike landscapes that recede into the distance. Claire received her BFA in Drawing and Printmaking from Washington University in St. Louis in 1997, and her MFA in Printmaking from the University of Washington in 1999. She is locally represented by James Harris Gallery.

In summary:
Claire Cowie Faculty Tour of Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell
wednesday (november 21) at 12:00 – 12:30
Henry Art Gallery

See you there!

Open House TOMORROW

The Henry Open House is teeming with fun, excitement, and art! Not only are we opening two new exhibitions, Like a Valentine: The Art of Jeffry Mitchell and Now Here is also Nowhere: Part I, but we are also throwing a museum-wide party! Come dressed in your conceptual best for the Student Henry Advisory Group’s Conceptual Costume Contest. Enjoy the sweet music of the UW Mariachi Band, Fainting Goats, and FBDC ~ ФБДЦ; Check out the FAN CLUB in the Study Center; eat some delicious babycakes courtesy of Cupcake Royale and enjoy libations from Pyramid Breweries. All of that PLUS installations of Public Health Poems by Rachel Kessler!

Rachel Kessler will premier her new poem cycle on public health posters installed in The Henry’s restrooms by sinks and in bathroom stalls.  Kessler will lead groups in hand-washing poetry usage, demonstrate hand washing technique, recite bathroom stall limericks, and sing sea shantys.  Each poem lasts approximately 30 seconds, the amount of time the department of health recommends lathering hands for.

 

PUBLIC HEALTH POEMS
About the project:

Remember how your preschool teacher instructed you to rub your soapy hands together for the entirety of the Happy Birthday song?  Now there is a poem for that.  While scrubbing in like surgeons, our minds and mouths deserve something more than that same old dreary song.

Rachel Kessler, a poet of the everyday, has composed a new poem cycle that will appear on bathroom stall doors, above urinals, and next to sinks in public restrooms. Posing as Employees Must Wash Hands Before Returning to Work signs and stall door advertisements, these poster poems will provide entertainment while imparting a useful earworm of knowledge.

She began writing her first anonymous protest poems on the bathroom stall walls in seventh grade, and has long been fascinated by graffiti art. Inspired by a collaboration several years ago with poet Pete Miller and their collective LOCCAL: League of Citizens Concerned About Literature, her work with homeless adults, and as a preschool teacher and parent, began trying her hand at School House Rock style poems for her kids to recite while scrubbing their hands at the sink.

Determined to put poetry in unlikely and non-traditional venues, her work explores the function and origin of poetry, not only as a mnemonic device, but as a way to reflect on the mundane, daily activities that comprise the majority of our hours. After a short residency in Rome researching ancient public health works, she collaborated with graffiti, nursery rhyme, fairy tales, health department propaganda to compose poems for hand-washing, poems for toilet use, poems for dental hygiene, poems for bathroom stall decisions.  Like the “Talking Fountains” of Rome, defaced statues where poets post anonymous political commentary, bathroom stalls are the original online comments.  Public restrooms, like phone booths, are one of the few public-private spaces where a citizen can find respite in a public place.

This project was funded by a City Artists award from the City of Seattle’s Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs.

 

About the Henry event:
Several Public Health Poems will be installed in the Henry restrooms by sinks and in bathroom stalls. Rachel Kessler will lead individuals and groups in handwashing-poetry usage in the restrooms via demonstrations, in impromptu bathroom stall limerick recitations, and in other public health poetic concerns.  Sea shantys will be sung in bathroom stalls.

 

BIO:

Rachel Kessler, co-founder of poetry-performance collaborations Typing Explosion and the Vis-à-Vis Society, is a writer and performer from Seattle.  Passionate about presenting poetry in non-traditional venues, she has performed interactive poetry in parks, on buses, in phonebooths, hair salons, and abandoned motels. She is visiting faculty and writer-in-residence at Centrum, a Whiteley Center Fellow with the University of Washington, a Jack Straw Writer, and senior writer-in-residence with Seattle Arts & Lectures.  She has performed at multiple times at the Seattle Art Museum, Bumbershoot, Night School at the Sorrento, Galapagos Art Space and Bowery Poetry Club in New York City.  Her poems have appeared in Tin House and the Monarch Review, and her text-based visual art is featured in The Open Daybook and Sea-Cat.

In summary, she’s a pretty rad lady. Make sure to spend some time in the loo at the Open House!

Henry Open House: Fan Club

At the Henry Open House this Friday, we are trying something a little different with the Reed Collection Study Center. We have asked friends (who are also artists) of Jeffry Mitchell to chose objects in the Henry’s Collection that Jeffry made or that remind them in some way of their friend. Hence the name, Fan Club. Artists who participated and selected work are Joey Veltkamp, Joe Park, Alfred Harris, Ken Kelly, Dan Webb, and Claude Zervas.

The Fan Club will have art they selected on display in the Study Center during the Member’s Preview of the Open House, which starts at 5 pm. Don’t forget: it’s not too late to become a member of the Henry, which includes free and early entry to the Open House plus so much more! Check out your options here!

Don’t forget to get your tickets for the Open House HERE.

Henry + Frye

 

Last week, the Frye’s new exhibition , Mw [Moment Magnitude] opened. This exhibition explores process across a multitude of platforms from contemporary Seattle artists. One of the artists featured is Jeffry Mitchell, who’s Like a Valentine exhibition, opens next Friday at the Henry Open House.

This Sunday, the Frye is hosting an event, John Cage and Friends: An Afternoon of Music and Film, in celebration of Cage’s 100th birthday. The program begins with a performance by Jarrad Powell of 4’33” (1952), Cage’s most well-known and controversial work. Following the performance, film critic Robert Horton hosts a screening of films that introduce the wide-ranging work of Cage and his circle. The event starts at 2 pm and you can find more information, including ticket information, here.

The Henry will also celebrate his centennial on November 2nd with a performance of 33 ⅓. This participatory score, which features a room full of interactive turntables and vinyl records, was conceived of by John Cage during a residency at the University of California at Davis in 1969. For this work museum visitors are encouraged to take on the role of DJ and create a musical composition by freely playing records to perform the work. Speaking of, do you have a portable record player (with built in speakers) that we could use during the performance of John Cage’s 33 ⅓ on November 2nd? Let us know! We will hook you up!