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Gallery Space: Goods & Services & Other Things

In 1826, a French physician concerned with the undesirable effects of a high-carb diet coined the proverb, “tell me what you eat, and I will tell you what you are.” This prolific expression mirrors the ideology of Molly Savage’s latest work—only the philosophy is slightly tweaked to accommodate the consumption zeitgeist of the 21st century. [...]
Danny Hamen

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In 1826, a French physician concerned with the undesirable effects of a high-carb diet coined the proverb, “tell me what you eat, and I will tell you what you are.” This prolific expression mirrors the ideology of Molly Savage’s latest work—only the philosophy is slightly tweaked to accommodate the consumption zeitgeist of the 21st century.

To put it simply, “you are what you buy.”

Past purchases reveal a lot about a person—a nexus of preferred food options, attire, pastimes, and interests—a culmination of items that expose the very essence of our humanity. It is for this reason Savage came up with her latest gallery exhibit, Goods & Services & Other Things—a series of oil paintings on canvas that depict her most personal purchases via crumbled receipts, providing the observer a glimpse into how she chooses to spend her time and resources.

“I suppose what my paintings say about me as a human is that I’m quite like a lot of people… I like to do things with my friends and family. I have to buy gifts for the people in my life, and I like to treat myself to the things I enjoy sometimes,” Savage said. “As an artist, I think that my paintings show that I’m pretty introspective. I like to think about what is important to me and sometimes even laugh at myself for the things I spend money on.”

The CCAD grad’s series serves as a self-portrait. The beauty of Savage’s work is not only in its hyperrealism, but also in its memorialization of the seemingly mundane. Take a crumbled Taco Bell receipt for $3.96 for instance, or a tattered receipt from J. Crew for $38.43—while we may not give these frayed pieces of paper a second thought, Savage has created something beautiful, an autobiographical testament of her own identity, be it proof of owning a heart embossed sweater—or a handful of burritos.

“One of the many reasons I like my receipt paintings is because the painting is still there long after the purchase is gone,” Savage said. “My Taco Bell receipt was painted my senior year of college when a sizable part of my diet was their fresco bean burritos. I lived on South Third Street off of Kossuth where there was a Taco Bell. That painting reminds me of that time in my life.”

But not all of the receipts are as ordinary—some written in Japanese, others from National Parks, each telling a unique story of Savage’s past experiences. Almost poetically, the very first painting in Savage’s unique series displays the purchase of a blank canvas.

“In 2011, Utrecht was having a sale on painting panels, so I bought one with no real plan for what to paint on it. The cashier handed me my receipt and that is what began my preoccupation with receipts.”

If art is reflective of life, then Goods & Services & Other Things certainly reveals the nuances of Savage’s day-to-day. While many decide to dispose of their financial paper trail, Savage has relished in hers, probing at the relationship between the ordinary and the remarkable.

A special opening for Goods & Services & Other Things will take place at The German Village Meeting Haus Sunday, June 4 from 2 to 4 p.m. The exhibition will run through July 2.

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Q&A: Columbus artist Mandi Caskey wants to bring us together

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Context plays one of the most important roles in our understanding of art. For instance, if you saw the unveiling of Columbus artist Mandi Caskey’s latest masterpiece, you’d probably equate the message to the daily protests that have been held in Columbus over the past week.

When the mural on the abandoned highway overpass near Scioto Audubon Metro Park was started, that wasn’t the case. It was a message meant to distract us from the hardships that COVID-19 flooded our lives with.

Now, to some people, the mural’s message, which stretches over 400 feet, takes on a new meaning.

(614) caught up with Caskey to find out the inspiration behind the piece and how she feels about subjectiveness in art. Check out a brief Q&A below and some incredible aerial footage from photographer/videographer John Thorne.

Obviously a project this big can't be tackled alone. Who all helped bring this idea to life?

From what I've read, it seems like your idea for this was greenlight very quickly and easily. Why do you think people responded to the idea in your message so strongly?

What roadblocks did you run into during the process of creating the mural?

How do you think art helps people during times of unrest and uncertainty like we're in right now?

I think there's something to be said about how the mural was made on the basis of the coronavirus pandemic and bringing people together and now it can take on the meaning of the social change that needs to happen in this world. What are your thoughts on that?


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Columbus artists employed to paint boarded-up downtown for #ArtUnitesCbus

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The Columbus arts community has really stepped up to the plate when it comes to trying to unite and inspire during tumultuous times. One of the latest efforts from visual artists around the area includes CAPA and Greater Columbus Arts Council (GCAC) latest partnership, #ArtUnitesCbus.

“When I do these projects, I try to remember to have fun and enjoy my loved ones. Even though it’s a bad time, there’s always room for love,” visual artist Hakim Callwood said.

The creative venture will exist to employ around 20 Columbus visuals artists. Their job will be to paint murals in place of the broken windows at the Ohio Theater and GCAC office. 

The art installations are expected to be finished by the end of the week.

“#ArtUnitesCbus is just one small way the arts community is trying to help. These murals are not the answer, simply a message that we ALL can, and must, help heal our community,” said Tom Katzenmeyer, President & CEO of the Arts Council, in a GCAC press release on Monday

Now more than ever is an extremely important time to give our community artists a platform. 

“The Columbus artists are more of a family than I think people understand,” Callwood said. “Whether we all talking every day or hanging out together; it doesn’t matter. When there’s times of need we always use our talents to support.” 

Check out the progress of their murals below.

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Weekend Roundup: 5/29 – 5/31

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With Ohio slowly starting to fully reopen, initial in-person gatherings have trickled into our news feeds.

Below are a few things you can check out over the weekend if you’ve been itching to leave your house and are capable of following COVID-19 guidelines.

Friday

Fair Food Weekend @ Oakland Nursery

One of the most disappointing summertime cancellations was the axing of the Ohio State Fair. For those still wanting to get their elephant ears or deep-fried oreo fix, Chester Foods will be bringing a pop-up food truck to the Oakland Nursery. Corn dogs, funnel cakes, fried oreos, fresh-cut fries, and lemonade shake-ups will all be on the menu. Fair food will be set up on both Friday and Saturday.

Time: 12 p.m. - 8 p.m. | Address: 4261 W. Dublin Granville Rd.

Saturday

Sonic The Hedgehog/Jumanji: The Next Level and The Hunt/The Invisible Man @ South Drive-In

With movie theaters in Ohio still closing their doors, the drive-in revival has been sweeping the state, nation, and world. Once drive-ins were given the go-ahead by DeWine, South Drive-In began to provide the double feature experience to eager moviegoers. Admission is $9.50 on Friday/Saturday and $7.50 on Sunday for those 12+, $2 for ages 5-11, and free for those under 4.

The showings for this weekend are as follows: 

Screen 1:

  • 9:05 p.m. Sonic The Hedgehog (PG)
  • 10:53 p.m. Jumanji: The Next Level (PG-13)
  • 12:56 a.m. Sonic The Hedgehog (Friday/Saturday only) 

Screen 2:

  • 9:25 p.m. The Hunt (R)
  • 11:05 p.m. The Invisible Man (R)
  • 1:09 a.m. The Hunt (Friday/Saturday only)

Check out the South Drive-In website to see what social distancing guidelines need to be followed.

Time: Arrive 1-2 hours prior to first showing | Address: 3050 S. High St.

Sunday

Reggae on the Patio @ Skully’s Music-Diner

If you’re in search of a relaxing Sunday, look no further than Skully’s. The music venue/bar will be opening its patio for those to have socially distance hangs, drinks, and wings. Skully’s will be setting the mood perfectly for a chill Sunday by spinning reggae music all night long. Get yourself out of the house and go catch some island vibes.

Time: 7 p.m. - 2 a.m. | Address: 1151 N. High St.

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