Here is a succinct description from the ArtPrize website:
"ArtPrize® is a radically open, independently organized international art competition with an unprecedented $200,000 top prize decided entirely by public vote.
For 19 days, three square miles of downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan, become an open playing field where anyone can find a voice in the conversation about what is art and why it matters. Art from around the world pops up in every inch of downtown, and it’s all free and open to the public."
What a fabulous idea! I downloaded the ArtPrize app to my iPhone and was able to vote for pieces I loved while I was in town (you must physically be in GR to vote which ensures tourism for the city and quells cyber-landslides from those who haven't really viewed the artwork).
There were entries on display in the lobby of my hotel, the JW Marriott. In the photo below, I framed a booth in the lobby against the visual interest in the background. In the distance you can see the yellow, red and orange banner art installation called "Hydro Anthem" on the Blue Bridge.
I loved staying at the JW because it was right on the Grand River; it was within walking distance of so many of the ArtPrize attractions and the staff was incredibly helpful. I'm definitely coming back.
I had free time on Saturday afternoon and my two sorority sisters from Kappa Alpha Theta at Michigan State came and picked me up for lunch and a whirlwind art tour. We had lunch at The Woman's City Club and had a quick "casual buffet for ArtPrize" lunch and then walked around the building viewing the art on display. During lunch, we heard a darling young singer/songwriter, Elle Pohlman perform with her guitar. Her music is her art and she proudly recited her ArtPrize entry number in between songs.
I liked seed bead artist, Colleen O'Rourke's cartoon-like girl in a piece called "New Couch."
Her mother, E. Lynne O'Rourke had a torn art collage hanging in the same room called "Fresh from the Garden."
My favorite part of this piece is the Bigelow tea tag hanging on the string out of the cup.
This art installment is called "Silk Waves in the Grand" by Al and Laurie Roberts.
I am showing you all of these to spotlight the various types of art on display. I feel very fortunate that I was able to visit Grand Rapids during ArtPrize - it is my kind of event! Good luck to all of the artists!
*While I was exploring the ArtPrize website, I came upon this page about Kumi Yamashita, of one of last year's winner. At first, it looks like colorful pieces of tissue paper in orderly rows and columns. When you look closer, you see that each tissue square has been manipulated/bent so that it casts a shadow that is a human face! I am in awe.
***October 5, 2013
The winner of ArtPrize 2013 has been announced! Congratulations to Ann Loveless of Frankfort, Michigan for her landscape art quilt titled, "Sleeping Bear Dune Lakeshore." It's beautiful! Congratulations, Ann.