Arts and Humanities
4:00 pm
Thu September 20, 2012

Artwithoutwalls Commissions New Art for IdeaFestival

Two large-scale, site-specific art installations by the Seattle-based art trio SuttonBeresCuller are opening at IdeaFestival. The artists created “Trailer Park,” a mobile city park traveling Main Street during the Festival and "Small Moons," an installation opening at Land of Tomorrow gallery on Broadway tomorrow.

SuttonBeresCuller is John Sutton, Ben Beres and Zach Culler, who have worked together in Seattle since 1999. Their multimedia installations, sculptures and performance pieces have been seen in galleries and museums across the United States and in Europe. 

Their installations are commissioned by artwithoutwalls, a non-collecting art organization created by 21C Museum Hotel owners Laura Lee Brown and Steve Wilson. Artwithoutwalls has sponsored artist talks and exhibits at IdeaFestival for the last few years.

“Small Moons” is a series of sculptures incorporating found and reclaimed objects attached to large globe-shaped skeleton frames. The artists have been working in Louisville for a month on the exhibit. 

"We sent out requests for people to bring in their trashed treasures or treasured trash, things they no longer wanted that they might otherwise give away or throw away," says artwithoutwalls director and 21C chief curator Alice Gray Stites. 

“These sculptures are portraits of the community, a collective vision of Louisville," adds  Stites. 

When the exhibit ends, individual items will be returned and the globes will be donated to 21C’s collection, where they will help create similar exhibits in other cities. 

The first iteration of "Trailer Park" was built in 2003, but this edition was built in Kentucky for this year's IdeaFestival. The small park sits on a flatbed trailer and includes grass, a park bench and a tree. It's parked outside of the Kentucky Center today, and on Friday it will travel down Main Street to park in front of Proof on Main as 21C's addition to National Park(ing) Day

"It was simply serendipitous that Park(ing) Day occurred during the same week as IdeaFestival," says Stites. 

Stites says "Trailer Park" is both an art experience and a prompt for conversation about urban green space and city planning, making it ideal for an event like IdeaFestival. The four-day celebration of innovation and thought opened yesterday with the pre-event Thrivals and continues through Saturday at the Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts and other venues around the city. 

"I think it’s also a great example of a very simple concept having broad ramifications and catalyzing important ideas," says Stites. "I think that’s an important component of what can happen during IdeaFestival, something seemingly simple leads to a complex set of important changes."