ArtPrize is a nineteen day event that gives life to the city of Grand Rapids, Michigan. Hundreds of diverse art pieces are entered to compete for a cash prize, and recognition of their work. Pieces vary from painting, three dimensional cubes, statues, or even random objects used to create marvelous art. About 200 local venues open their doors to welcome the public’s view in ArtPrizes 7th year exhibition. However, ArtPrize does not solely use paintings and murals; much technology goes into the promotion of ArtPrize, and even some pieces itself.
The winner of ArtPrize is based on the public’s vote, which can be casted via phone or internet. The steps to vote are located on the main website for Art Prize. An app is available for Android and I-Phone users, which can be downloaded right from your phone carrier’s app-store. The website gives information about the volunteers and members who made this event happen, along with different social media outlets to follow the autumn event. The website for ArtPrize also has a tab which shows; each piece of art, where it is located, the artist, and allows you to vote viewing them via the ArtPrize website.
A piece of art I stumbled across while walking though the commonly known B.O.B. downtown was titled Great Lake Fire, created by Theodore James. This piece represented 12 pictures of each sunset on the Lake Michigan beach. James used technology of light fixtures against the wall to shine on the images. The light reflected each photograph, and gave the piece a more three dimensional appear.
Another piece that used the technology was created by Megan Foldenauer titled Rob. The drawing was constructed with carbon dust on a canvas. The piece was located in The B.O.B. in the middle of the stairwell on the main floor. The technology used was a projector that shinned a video of how the piece was made onto the back of the canvas. It was interesting to look at how the piece was made, then walk around to the actual finished product. At first, I was confused on why an image was being projected, but when I discovered the reason, it made the piece more personal and delightful.
The final piece I viewed that used a sort of technology was The 6D Truncated Octahedron and geodesic world by Becky Lucas. The piece is located in front of the Van Andel Arena, and definitely stands out in the busy crowed city. The piece is a 6D glass cube which has 19 panels of prefabricated stained glass. The technology used is only seen at night, but the artist’s apprentice described the process to me. At night, they shine light from a wooden cube above to make the sphere glow, which creates prisms of rainbows on the cement. The reason was so the piece could be viewed at night while cars and pedestrians were traveling. Even without the technology of light at night, the piece stood out and was vibrant.
The winner of ArtPrize last year, Anila Quayyum Agha, used some technology to bring in the win for her laser-cut-wood masterpiece. The pieced was titled Intersections, and was 6.5 foot cube that hung from the ceiling. The cube was cut with different patterns on each six sides. With a light inside the piece, the patterns reflected against the walls of the room. The technology used was simple, but the art piece was bold and impacted the community.
Before attending ArtPrize last year, I surely thought it was just paintings on the walls made with brush strokes and pencil ash. However, this year I explored more into pieces that used technology, and realized technology has a huge impact on the world of art. Some pieces would have been dull and meaningless without a simple light or tiny projector.
ArtPrize. (2015). Retrieved from: http://www.artprize.org/
ArtPrize Entries. (2015). Retrieved from: http://www.artprize.org/entries
ArtPrize Voting. (2015). Retrieved from: http://www.artprize.org/vote
ArtPrize Winner 2014. Intersections. (2014). Retrieved from: https://www.artprize.org/anila-quayyum-agha/2014/intersections