ArtPrize announced the twenty artist entries selected from among 1,550 eligible works during the first round of public voting, that will move on to Round 2 Voting with the hopes of winning the world’s largest art prize. The four artists amongst the top 20 are showing at DeVos Place Convention Center
- michigan petoskey stone, by Randall Libby from Manistee, MI
WORLDS LARGEST PETOSKEY STONE DISPLAY Using petoskey stone and fossil, a framed two-dimensional display with a square shape that measures approximately nine feet (9ft.) tall by nine feet (9ft.) wide / a depth of approximately 4 inches and a weight near 700lbs. Subject matter- State of Michigan map with all 83 counties.
- In a Promised Land… by Shawn Michael Warren from Harvey, Illinois
“In A Promised Land” revisits the aftermath of the horrific Tulsa race riot of 1921, which left Black Wall Street – the most affluent black community in America at that time – in ruin. What’s even more unnerving is that many survey courses of American and African American history have made a glaring omission to this event in history. One has to wonder how this is even possible, but in the American conscience, forgetting has always been easier than remembering. In a country where most would like to consider racial discrimination something that all but ended with emancipation and to think that holocausts are something perpetrated on foreign soils, a collective amnesia lasting nearly a century has buried the fact that a Black Holocaust did happen on American soil. The Tulsa race riot of 1921 is considered by many to be the deadliest occurrence of racial violence in American history.
- The Race by Kurt Swanson from Grand Rapids, MI
- The Race” consists of three bicycles made completely out of wood and a 1970’s photo of the artist; racing each other and racing into the future. Many types of wood were used in this project including, oak, ash, mahogany, aspen, maple and bamboo. It has presented me with some very unique challenges in building and constructing this project; sometimes frustrating, sometimes very rewarding. Several wood pieces were stained, carved, shaped, while others were steamed and bent into tortured shapes. When discerning the message to communicate in this art piece, I considered the importance of my first bike. It was my first taste of freedom, my gateway to independence. It was basic transportation and every kid in my neighborhood had one. Rides to our childhood destinations frequently ended up in informal races to an imaginary finish line and in the same way we were hurrying to an unknown future.
BREAKTHROUGH by Breakthrough Team from Ada, MI
BREAKTHROUGH is a community-powered art endeavor and mental health initiative, conceived in a collaboration between two psychotherapists and a fine artist. The vision and mission for BREAKTHROUGH is to raise awareness for mental wellness and fight stigma on a personal and community level. The community is invited to participate in the creation of the artwork, by visiting our “breaking studio” where they may break ceramics as a symbolic gesture of accepting and breaking down old and dysfunctional paradigms free of judgement or shame. The resulting pieces of individual “breakthrough” will be saved and reconfigured in a large mosaic symbolic of the re-birth and freedom that comes with the authentic expression of one’s humanity and the courage to connect with others or to seek help when needed.
More details on the website…