By Melissa Groth
Bringing the eat/buy local movement to a new medium is Locally Sourced, an art exhibit curated by Victoria Reis. On display through March 15th at the Katzen Arts Center at American University are over 200 works from collections of six regionally focused Community Supported Art programs. Locally Sourced is the first exhibition in the AU art series Do You Know Where Your Art Comes From? which will take place over the course of two years. The six Community Support Art (CSA) programs include D.C.’s Transformer, a non-profit visual arts organization supporting D.C. emerging artists. Other CSAs featured in the Locally Sourced exhibit include Threewalls from Chicago and Pelican Bomb from New Orleans, as well as programs from Miami, Brooklyn, and Los Angeles.
The pieces on display are made of a variety of mediums including but not limited to sculpture, audio recordings that correspond to paintings, video, and digital photography. One piece that caught my eye was a silkscreen print called “Make it Rain” by Vanessa Adams from Pelican Bomb which features winged tampons and the stained underwear crotch of some throned woman in the clouds. Many paintings and prints have interesting graphic design qualities. But each is unique, which is the greatest quality of this exhibit. There is no aesthetic theme or required medium, so the collection is exciting and varied. There is so much to look at. The beautiful abstract watercolor paintings of Matt Savitsky from Artist Curated Projects, for example, or colorful geometric designs from Threewalls. None of the pieces are especially dark or brooding. The mood of the room is hopeful, excited, bright-eyed; which is probably indicative of the climate of Community Supported Art programs. After your next trip to the farmers’ market, check out the exciting local art (and art that is local to other localities) at American University.
Locally Sourced runs through March 15 at the American University Katzen Arts Center, 2nd floor. Exhibition hours are Tuesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.