In the morning yesterday I visited the American Visionary Art Museum and what a fabulous few hours it was! What is visionary art ?, you ask. Straight from their website:
What is visionary art?
Like love, you know it when you see it. But here’s the longer definition, straight out of our Mission Statement: “Visionary art as defined for the purposes of the American Visionary Art Museum refers to art produced by self-taught individuals, usually without formal training, whose works arise from an innate personal vision that revels foremost in the creative act itself.” In short, visionary art begins by listening to the inner voices of the soul, and often may not even be thought of as ‘art’ by its creator.
I walked around the Baltimore harbor and when I got to the AVAM, I was cold and not really looking around, head down, bracing for the wind. Then, what did I see in the sidewalk, but little lights dancing around. I quickly realized that the dancing lights were coming from a tree made entirely of glass and mirrors. Amazing! I knew immediately that I would like the place.
From kinnetic sculptures and stitching to drawing and painting, the work was ecclectic and inspiring. It was easy to see the vision of the artists! My favorite work were miniature sculptures carved from the graphite on the end of a pencil. They were so small that you had to see them with a magnifying glass. I wish I had a picture, but imagine 26 pencils lined in a row with each tip carved as a letter in the alphabet. Think the smallest hammer you’ve ever seen!
I met the artist who created this piece: Cram Guy. The piece was currently being refurbished and he wrote down, what I thought was his information for me, but it turned out just to be a youtube link, which is fabulous but I’d like to give credit where due. Enjoy!
I’m not sure if for good or for bad, but I was much more inspired yesterday by my visit to the Visionary Art Museum than ACC. The work at the ACC show is good, and especially the jewelry is AMAZING! In terms of textile work, I don’t know what I was expecting, but things are mostly garments. Where are the embroiderers? The quirky, whimsy, and passion displayed at the AVAM was refreshing!
Today is my 3rd and final day at the show and my opportunity to walk around and talk to other artists. Yay! I’m going to try to get some photos today and will post more later.