City-Wide Open Studios Opens With a Blast

U.S. Air Force bugler Carl Stanley has awakened soldiers hundreds of times in the early morning with the getty-up notes of his trumpet, including during four months in Afghanistan.

At Artspace he blew a stirring reveille—in the evening. He blew it to bestir troops not of soldiers but of artists as they launched the annual City-Wide Open Studios (CWOS) 21-day municipal art extravaganza.

The occasion was the kick-off party Friday night at Artspace’s headquarters downtown at Orange and Crown, where many of the 334 participating CWOS artists mingled and checked out a single example of each other’s work that decorated the walls.

Artspace’s Helen Kauder explained that the theme this year is reveille—to call attention to the Goffe Street Armory, where the third, “alternative space” weekend of CWOS takes place, Oct. 26-7.

“It’s also a kind of metaphor for what we do with Open Studios, a kind of awakening of artists, an awakening of the city to artists,” she added. This year she would like people to consider the awakening of the armory as a potential new cultural venue for the city.

Allan Appel PhotoLocal musician Xavier Serrano (pictured) checked the colorful “Retina #5,” in the foreground, by artist #88 Dana Scinto.

He also was working on deciphering John David Scully’s small squiggly etching next to the Scinto.

“It first comes off as scribbling, but you stay with it and it looks like West Rock, he added.

Eliza Valk, #100, was showing a dark and foreboding photograph from what she calls her Boston Post Road series.

It’s a series of images, in this case of panicked starlings rising, that show the effects in color and light of freak storms

Valk said her Erector Square studio will be open for visiting on Oct. 12-13, the first weekend of CWOS.

On that weekend you will also be able to find the city’s first-ever art gallery on wheels parked in the Erector Square parking lot.

Vito Bonanno, who makes his art through and despite coping with Asperger syndrome, has turned a big Nissan NV2500 into a mobile cabinet of curiosities. Friday night it held Bonanno’s art along with a few traffic lights awaiting repurposing and old giveaway toys from fast food restaurants.

His friend and artistic mentor Katro Storm (pictured) said part of Bonanno’s method is to collect objects from memory that will ultimately find their way into his images.

Why the mobile gallery? “Because of his neuro-diversity, it’s important to us his art gets to the people,” said mom Cindy Watts.

The second weekend, Oct. 19-20, features private studio visits, along with a number of curator-led tours

On both days tours on bicycles to artists’ studios will be led by Devil’s Gear Bike Shop’s Matt Feiner.

Stanley, who is now a graduate student of the trumpet at Yale School of Music, said he enjoyed his first-ever civilian reveille. Usually his posture is more “locked up” when you play at formal military occasions, he said.

He said he found the art world, or at least the 16th annual CWOS version, far more relaxed. “I just let it flow,” he said.

Among the art appreciators Friday night were Mayor DeStefano and Fair Haven booster Lee Cruz and his son Pablo.

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posted by: Bill Saunders on October 7, 2013  3:57pm

How come nobody ever comments on art stories…..?????