OKLAHOMA – Offering the largest artist awards in the region, the Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition’s (OVAC) Art 365 exhibition challenges artists to create new, innovative artwork. Five artists each receive $12,000 and one year of curatorial guidance in preparation for the exhibition opening at [ArtSpace] at Untitled in Oklahoma City March 25-May 7, 2011.

Artists were selected from a statewide call for proposals by guest curator Shannon Fitzgerald, a writer and independent curator and previously Chief Curator at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis.

Art 365 demonstrates -- in the most visibly stimulating way -- that deserving artists, when provided tangible creative, intellectual, and financial support, excel,” said Fitzgerald. “I think the ambition of the artists will be evident and what each imparts will spark the viewers’ imagination and a sense of curiosity.”

Grace Grothaus (Tulsa) is creating multimedia, backlit landscape paintings which examine the relationship between organic systems and industrial modifications within regional landscapes, from an aerial perspective. Aaron Hauck (Ada) is exploring the evolution of culture and consumerism and human impact on the environment through a series of sculptural works based on the Clovis Point, an artifact of the earliest human settlement in Oklahoma. Geoffrey Hicks (Tulsa) is developing software that will help re-purpose an 800-pound robotic arm into a producer of art that will interact with the audience and create new works of art which will be on digital display. Liz Rodda (Norman) is using digital video, photography and drawing to create a body of work that when juxtaposed together create a larger conceptual foray into the internal musings of a specific female identity. Frank Wick (Norman) is experimenting with new materials to create a series of sculptural pieces that collectively address futility through a lens of science fiction and related cultural ephemera.

“We view the exhibition as an investment in research and development for the artists,” said Julia Kirt, executive director of OVAC. “Art 365 fulfills specific needs for area artists to receive both funding and feedback, allowing them to explore their vision and improve their work. “

The public is invited to experience these ambitious projects at the opening reception of Art 365 on March 25, 5-8 pm at [ArtSpace] at Untitled, 1 NE 3rd St in downtown Oklahoma City. The exhibition will continue through May 7, with a closing reception and catalog release party on May 6, 5-8 pm.

Art 365 will travel to Living Arts, 307 E. Brady, Tulsa, July 1-22, with an opening reception on July 8.

Art 365 is funded in part by John McNeese & John Richardson, Jean Ann Fausser, Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation, Kirkpatrick Foundation, George Kaiser Family Foundation, Oklahoma Humanities Council, National Endowment for the Humanities, Oklahoma Arts Council, and Allied Arts.

For more information about Art 365, please visit www.Art365.org.

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Contact: Kelsey Karper, 405-879-2400

publications@ovac-ok.org