Cincinnati Art Museum/Fragmentary Head of a King

We have been busy this fall! On top of our regular Community Studio programming, we began intensive research into the next phase of our project: intersecting art with agriculture in order to imagine creative solutions to food insecurity in Bethel. With these new goals in mind, we decided we needed an amazing team, and we asked two of our summer interns join us as research assistants. Alec Guenther came on board to help us research sustainable agriculture methods, and Kayla Ragland became our funding research assistant.

On September 15th, we attended a grant writing seminar at the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County, and although Kayla was unable to attend, Alec agreed to join us in order to learn more about pursuing grant funding.

After the seminar, we paid a visit to the Cincinnati Art Museum and spent the afternoon looking at their impressive collection spanning from ancient Egyptian to contemporary art. This was Alec’s first visit to the museum and we had a lot of fun discussing the work together.

We were especially excited to find a special exhibition of work by Felicity resident, Ana England. The museum’s website provides this description of Kinship, which is up until March 4, 2018:

Ana England is fascinated by the foundational and fundamental connections inherent in nature, and believes that if you look closely, you will find that the connections between us are greater than those separating us. England’s work emphasizes and incorporates shared patterns and structures that are present in vastly different scales and across various natural elements as a way to underscore the connections, or kinship, between the larger cosmos, the human realm, and the microscopic universe.

In observing the curl of a galaxy imprinted in a fingerprint or in contemplating that minute solar systems are embedded in the atoms creating our cells, England reveals a community that transcends race, nationality and species identification. This exhibition will feature several of England’s large-scale sculptures and installations, masterfully crafted to highlight the profound tapestry of kinship in our existence.

Just recently we had the immense pleasure of visiting England’s home and studio. Stay tuned for an upcoming post about that experience!

Fortunately, we were able to see the Anila Quayyum Agha exhibition, All the Flowers Are for Me, before it came down mid-October. Her elegiac, room-sized light installation and works on paper were affecting and evocative. The museum’s website offers this description:

Pakistani-American artist Anila Quayyum Agha creates immersive installations by manipulating light. In All the Flowers Are for Me (Red), light emanates from the center of a laser-cut steel cube, enveloping the gallery in intricate shadows that ripple and change as you walk through the space. Inspired by Islamic architectural forms and referencing her experience as a diaspora artist, the geometric and floral patterns cast upon the walls, floor, and ceiling create a sense of belonging through shared experience.

Finally, we were thrilled by the opportunity to experience contemporary South African artist William Kentridge’s More Sweetly Play the Dance, on view until January 28th, 2018. Kentridge’s animated films, prints, drawings, and installations explore themes of apartheid, colonialism, and totalitarianism. We highly encourage everyone see this moving, immersive work, described below on the museum’s website:

This powerful film installation encircles the viewer with seven screens, on which a procession of travelers passes across a charcoal-drawn animated landscape. The immersive panorama hints at multiple histories, evoking a danse macabre, a jazz funeral, an exodus and a journey. Accompanied by a brass band, the film references medieval manuscripts and the storylines of refuge throughout history.

 


Fragmentary Head of a King

by Matthew Kosinski

 

This poem by Matthew Kosinski was inspired by a piece in the museum’s Egyptian collection (below). Click on the image above or download the PDF of the poem here: Fragmentary Head of a King.

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