Eight artists will have one hour to complete an installation and compete for a cash prize in Louisville’s second Instant Installation Invitational Saturday at Swanson Contemporary gallery in Nulu.
The invited artists run the gamut of media and styles, including sculptor Mike Ratterman, photographer Sarah Lyon, furniture artist David Metcalf and video artist Valerie Sullivan Fuchs.
Saturday’s Spring Meet is the second Instant Installation Louisville artist Ezra Kellerman has hosted. The competition places unique constraints on the artists, who are required to use surprise materials to create their work.
“It can be anything from a baby doll head, a piece of wood, a carrot, really whatever, with some parameters for safety issues,” says Kellerman. “They have to pick an item they can find enough duplicates of that every other artist in the show can have one.”
The artists make a piece out of the materials while the audience watches and votes for a winner. The speed and constraints are just part of the event’s intrigue. The other surprise, Kellerman says, is seeing how different artists make use of strange materials. A baby doll head can become so many different things, depending on the artist’s eye.
“Really, it depends on where the artist approaches their own work away from the show,” he says. “There’s not a particular type of artist or maker that’s been invited.”
Tools are also restricted, to level the playing field and to make the competition interesting. Two colors of acrylic paint. Screws, fasteners and tape. That’s about it.
“They can really only bring cordless tools or hand-held tools. No fire,” says Kellerman.
“I figured that was best,” he says. “I can just see someone thinking I’m going to bring a blowtorch and char something, which would be really great, but you know, that can be kind of dangerous.”
The free event is 7-9:30 p.m. and features music by DJ Matt Anthony.