Beyond the Gallery Walls: Art Takes Flight with ‘LIFT’ at Artpace
Do you remember the last time you flew a kite? Artpace’s latest exhibit, titled “LIFT: An Exhibition of Kites,” will bring those memories soaring back.
Kite-flying is a favorite past time for people in all walks of life, in every corner of the world. They are used in various cultures ceremoniously, in celebration, for recreation, and, as we see on display in the gallery space, for artistic expression.
The exhibit is presented by Bridge Projects, which is a San-Antonio-based platform for creative collaboration operated by artists Stuart Allen and Cade Bradshaw. Allen and Bradshaw toured CO LAB Magazine through the exhibit, explaining the process and meaning behind each artist’s work.
The collection includes contributions from artists around the world. You’ll find kites that hum and buzz through the air, kites painted with incredible detail, and kites crafted with intricate and delicate bamboo and string. There are kites that are long, kites that are dainty, and kites that don’t really look like kites at all. Every type of kite to have entered an artist’s imagination is on display in the Hudson Showroom, and as unbelievable as it may seem while looking at these elaborately designed works of art, they were all built to do exactly what kites do – fly.
Each artist has crafted his artwork to be perceived not just on a gallery wall, but as it was meant to be seen. Allen and Bradshaw hope that in the future, Bridges Project will be able to take one of their kite exhibitions outside to be viewed in its intended destination: the sky.
Local Artists Breathe Life into Unique Kite Creations
Bridge Project also invited twelve San Antonio artists to participate in the exhibit with their own original work, using the kite as their creative vessel. As is always true of our local artists, these pieces do not disappoint. The diverse collection of kites ranges from floral to mechanical; from profound to humorous. On display in the conference room, you will find a kite with a fictional background story included as part of the installation, complete with printed brochures from the kite’s previous life in a time-traveling museum.
On opposite walls of the conference room are a kite that is nearly invisible to the naked eye – until light catches the unassuming translucent form and sends out a dazzling spectrum of light – and a chain of multiple galaxy-printed miniature kites connected to form a universe in flight. In the main space downstairs, there is a giant flying alligator who greets you with a grin, an unnerving but comical self-portrait in android shape, and a mechanically spinning kite, among others.
The list of San Antonio artists include some familiar names:
On display outside of the Hudson Showroom is a collection of ‘Kite Stories” – some told by the artists themselves – that are a product of Bridge Project’s kite-building workshop. They tell us about the first or last time the kite-maker flew a kite, or what the experience has meant to them in their lives. The stories are funny and nostalgic, and all really give meaning to exhibit as a whole.
The exhibit will be open for the remainder of 2017, coming to a close on December 31.
Visit artpace.org for gallery information and exhibit hours, and make sure to check out the other amazing things Artpace has to offer the community.