Spark II, a pop-up gallery of engaging, projection-based artworks, will be open in the Harborplace’s Light Street Pavilion during Baltimore’s Light City Festival, April 14 through 21. Made possible through the vision and generosity of PNC, the gallery features the work of UMBC faculty and graduate students, as well as artists from Towson University. Spark II also features a schedule of performances, events, and interactive activities.
The gallery is curated by Ginevra Shay, a Baltimore based artist who uses photography and sculpture to depict poetic moments of observation and adaptation. She uses dystopian backdrops of collapsing dominant structures to point out not just the flaws of these systems, but to highlight alternative, minor modes of persistence. Her influences range from failed systems, municipal design, modernist architecture, to cinematic slapstick. In her work, the body remains central but also the point of departure.
Shay’s curatorial practice is primarily experimental and site-specific. Through her curatorial work she’s activated dormant department stores, museums, banks, arcades, and parks. She has worked with artists such as Abigail DeVille, Victoria Fu, Miriam Simun, Michael Jones McKean, Elle Pérez, Dina Kelberman, Marina Pinsky, Martha Tuttle, Max Guy, and Malcolm Peacock. Her work and publications are in the libraries of Yale University Art Gallery Library, The International Center for Photography, Indie Photobook Library, Houston Center for Photography, and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
UMBC will be represented at Spark II with works by:
Stephen Bradley, associate professor of visual arts, and Tagide deCarvalho, research assistant professor of biological sciences
Lynn Cazabon, associate professor of visual arts
Cathy C. Cook, associate professor of visual arts
Eric Dyer, associate professor of visual arts
Lisa Moren, professor of visual arts, Jaimes Mayhew, ’10 IMDA MFA, Neja Tomšič, former UMBC artist in residence, and Martin Bricelj Baraga
Timothy Nohe, professor of visual arts and director of the Center for Innovation, Research and Creativity in the Arts
Corrie Francis Parks, assistant professor of visual arts
Sarah G. Sharp, assistant professor of visual arts
Spark II will be open daily 6-9 p.m. unless otherwise indicated for a special event.
Saturday, April 14
TBA — Mind on Fire, a musical arts collective, presenting contemporary music in Baltimore and beyond, performs a diverse selection of contemporary chamber music for instruments and voices
Sunday, April 15
4:15 p.m. — Krisztina Dér, ’12 music, presents Light/Flute
5 p.m. — Mountain Peaks
Monday, April 16
8 p.m. — Lisa Cella, associate professor of music, and Stephen Bradley present SHINE. Lisa Cella performs the flute works of four contemporary composers — Christopher Adler, Adam Greene, Christopher Burns, and retired UMBC professor of music Stuart Saunders Smith — and provides a sonic framework for Stephen Bradley’s time-lapse video work that explores a meditative perspective of quotidian events.
Tuesday, April 17
7 p.m. — Virtual reality workshop by Sujan Shrestha
Wednesday, April 18
7 p.m. — Towson University Percussion Ensemble
8 p.m. — Sweaty Eyeballs screening, an eclectic mix of animated short films created by Baltimore area artists and students — The Sweaty Eyeballs Animation Invitational began as the brainchild of animator and Towson University professor Phil Davis as a way to bring unique voices in international and independent animation to a Baltimore audience. Since 2012, Sweaty Eyeballs screenings have showcased an eclectic mix of animated narrative, documentary, music videos, and experimental work pushing the boundaries of art, style, and technology.
Thursday, April 19
7 p.m. – Electronic Improvisation Trio Jason Charney, Shelly Purdy, Timothy Nohe
Featuring Selections from Nohe’s “When People Become Verbs” composed for a dance by René Brozic. Additional improvisations on apps, electronics, and organ pipes by Charney and Purdy.
8 p.m. — Sweaty Eyeballs screening encore
Friday, April 20
5:30 – 7 p.m. — Visual Arts Alumni Reception (joint UMBC and Towson University event — no rsvp required)
5:45 p.m. — Experimental dance by Corey Levine and Carly Bress
6:30 p.m. — The Umbilicus Percussion Ensemble — Umbilicus was founded in 2012 in reaction to the generic contemporary percussion quartet, with the intention of promoting and performing a more experimental repertoire, much if it composed by its members. Umbilicus has roots in the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. It consists of UMBC faculty member associate professor of music Tom Goldstein and three UMBC alumni: Paul Neidhardt, Michelle Purdy and Will Redman. The group has commissioned and premiered an array of works. The name Umbilicus contains the letters U M B C. Their performance will feature works by composers Will Redman, John Cage, Joseph Cello, and Brian Johnson.
Saturday, April 21
6 – 9 p.m.— Illuminated Pods Workshop, Towson University
Using a variety photos and real seeds for inspiration, participants will create and build an imaginary seed. They first will create a wire armature and then cover with a translucent “skin.” The sculptures will have a small light suspended inside to illuminate their artwork. The scale of the sculptures will be small – no larger than the palm of ones hand. Participants can carry their finished work, fashion it into a wearable or attach to a stick.