These three small abstract paintings by Brenda Beerhorst will be available at Big Bang this weekend.
We want to make sure all of our local followers know about the Big Bang Art Festival that is happening this weekend at Mangiamo! on Lake Drive. This Festival has been brought together by long time art collaborators Reb Roberts and Tom D. Both are full time working artists here in Grand Rapids.
Brenda and I have lived in this neighborhood now for a good 20+ years and we have seen a lot of great changes that have come about because of the hard work of a lot of good people. The title of this art fest comes from the inside story of a sign that got plunked down in an empty building site where a filling station had long ago been demolished. The sign colorfully said, "East Hills, Center Of The Universe". We did not realize the prophetic statement this would prove to be in the future. That once empty corner is now the site of a beautiful LEED certified building - houseing a group of thriving businesses, one of which is one of the most popular restaurants in the whole city.
Over the past twenty years Brenda and I have watched this part of the city rise up out of ashes to become - the hands down, hippest place to be in Grand Rapids Michigan. And it should be noted that like Reb's cool hand-painted funky sign, art and artists have been right at the center of where the action has been in this neighborhood's transformation.
"art is the gilded arrow of capitalism, promising to turn vacant lots into gold." The truth is that a few good galleries can help a neighborhood in ways that 40 years' worth of poverty programs cannot. The middle class wants to live near art, open stores near art. The search for affordable studio space by American artists - that began a century ago in Greenwich Village has proved that - where art goes, money follows, and the ending is always the same: the neighborhood booms and the artists go bust, driven out by skyrocketing rents and their own restlessness, their desire for Something New." Deborah Solomon New York Times Aug 19/01
I would encourage you to come out the the Big Bang and see the artists with their work as well as sample the great food and local music on hand throughout the week end. The hours will be 10-6 Sat, 11-5 Sun