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Wild Goose Creative and ROY G BIV Gallery create community in the city’s new arts district

Linda Lee Baird

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Wild Goose Creative and ROY G BIV Gallery have quite a few things in common: both are non-profit organizations, both are committed to fostering the talents of emerging artists, and soon, both will be neighbors in Franklinton. As these longstanding arts institutions settle into the neighborhood, its reputation as the city’s new arts capital further solidifies.

After closing its longtime location in the Short North in 2017, ROY’s leadership team felt Franklinton was the right spot for its next iteration. “We recognized that Franklinton was an emerging arts district, and so to be an organization that supported emerging artists, it just seemed like such a natural fit,” said J.D. Beiting, ROY’s Board President. Ultimately, the gallery became the first tenant in the new River and Rich development.

Photos: Brian Kaiser

In addition to doubling its capacity, building a new gallery allowed ROY to customize the space with modular walls, built-in speakers and ceiling hooks to display three-dimensional pieces. These enhancements allow for additional media, such as film, to be included in ROY’s shows. It also provides visitors with new ways to experience the art.

“Sometimes in our receptions, we’ll play music that the artists were listening to when they were creating the art that’s being shown,” said Lynette Santoro-Au, ROY’s Gallery Director.

Beyond larger square footage, Franklinton offered something that can be hard to come by when moving to a new area: a sense of genuine community. Beiting credits the organizations that set up shop early in Franklinton—including the studios at 400 West Rich Street, the Vanderelli Room, the Idea Foundry, Glass Axis, and Jim Sweeney, the former Director of the Franklinton Development Association— for bringing an arts-focused, inclusive approach to the neighborhood’s development.

“Everyone just sort of swaps assets and resources,” Beiting said. “Being collaborative and partnering is what’s making it really attractive, which is bringing in more arts groups.”

One such arts group is Wild Goose Creative; a gallery, creative, and literary arts space operating in the University District since 2006. Wild Goose plans to open a second space in Franklinton—Wild Goose West—in late 2020. Executive Director Patrick Roehrenbeck said that the second space will allow the organization to increase its capacity.

“We felt to truly fulfill our mission, in creating this strong creative community, we needed to be able to give access to all those creatives and artists that we were having to say no to, just because there wasn’t the time or the space for it.”

At the same time, Roehrenbeck feels that the artists at Wild Goose will bring new creative offerings to Franklinton.

“If you really look at Franklinton now, 90 percent of it is visual art,” he said, explaining that there wasn’t a venue focused on literary arts, music, spoken word, and fashion.

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As they plan for the opening, Roehrenbeck and his team are engaging the community in the process. They’ve surveyed over 100 Franklinton residents to learn what would benefit them. The goal, in Roehrenbeck’s words, is to, “ask them what they want, not let them know what we’re bringing.”

With Route 315 dividing Franklinton’s arts and residential districts, Wild Goose plans to partner with existing institutions in order to meaningfully connect with the community. Lydia Simon, Wild Goose’s Operations Manager, said their goal is to be intentional with the programming that they bring to Franklinton by, “building off of what’s already happening down there.” Working with schools and community-based organizations to start an artist mentoring program is one way Wild Goose is planning to serve as a bridge between artists and residents.

“We’re all about building community through art,” Simon said. “We want to continue that mission in Franklinton because there is absolutely a need for it.”

Partnering with established organizations is also a key way to break down what Beiting called “mental barriers” to experiencing and enjoying art. “I think there might be some perception barriers. Someone might walk by, and look in, and say, ‘Oh wow, this looks like, you know, hoity art,’” he said. But learning about it from a trusted individual or at a longstanding institution can make it less intimidating.

Operating as non-profit organizations also allows both spaces to worry less about costs and more about experiences, which translates to affordability. “It gives people the opportunity to experience something new without there being that financial burden,” Roehrenbeck said. Santoro-Au echoed this idea.

“We can take chances, we can be a little more nimble, a little more inclusive.”

All of this is in line with what made Franklinton so attractive as an arts district in the rst place: artists themselves have always been at the center.

“We have artists at the table in all the planning that we do, as opposed to artists coming in at the end and not being a part of the conversation,” Santoro-Au said.

I look forward to seeing what the artists have in store for us.

ROY G BIV Gallery is located at 435 W Rich St. Wild Goose Creative is located at 2491 Summit St. Visit roygbivgallery.com or wildgoosecreative.com for more information.

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Arts & Culture

Gallery Space: Danielle Deley

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In the ‘60s, the clash of mass culture and fine art exploded. Led by New York-based artist Andy Warhol, whose silkscreen paintings of Campbell’s Soup Cans and Marilyn Monroe were instantly iconicized, the vibrant basis of his works became known as pop art. While Warhol was one of the founding pop art leaders, the lesser-recognized Roy Lichtenstein was a Fine Arts graduate from The Ohio State University in 1949 and was notable for his comic-like expressionism.

Subtly following Lichtenstein’s influential trajectory is visual artist Danielle Deley, who’s currently prepping for her Skylab show Jubilee. Her use of color is rich in tone, and her subjects are easily recognizable, with cultural nods to Frank Ocean, Barbara Streisand and the late David Bowie as Ziggy Stardust.

Photos: Brian Kaiser

“I want Jubilee to feel like you’re walking back into the height of the pop art era. I might have a more muted color palette than Lichtenstein, but I want it to make a comment about traditional fine art,” Deley said. “Each of the 2D pieces are based off of very popular sculptures in Greek and Renaissance art. Each 3D piece is taken from paintings from that same time period.”

Originally from Youngstown, Deley graduated from CCAD in 2011 with a BFA in graphic design and advertising. Spending a semester in England while she attended CCAD, Deley regularly kept in contact with her grade school art teachers, who provided encouragement and foundational skills. Their guidance led her into becoming co-president of the Columbus Society of Communicating Arts, and even illustrating Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot on a cover of Chicago Reader in April. Through Deley’s intricate, pastel design, Lightfoot is recreated into a queen of spades form.

“Sue Kwong, the creative lead for the Chicago Reader, reached out, had this awesome cover idea and wanted me to bring her vision to life,” Deley said about the collaboration. “She found me on this forum called Women Who Draw, something I submitted to six years ago. They make a space for female artists and illustrators to find other female artists and illustrators. [Illustrating the cover] probably took eight hours. It was my first cover illustration for a big publication so I wanted to get it right.”

Often visiting Gateway Film Center to see how films are composed, Deley actively studies the meticulous craft of cinematography, along with going to intimate gallery spaces to align with the art community. After graduating from CCAD, Deley would only create on her computer, but decided to transition her work into watercoloring. “[Watercoloring] then moved into gouache, wood carving, and finally painting with acrylics. My style started to take shape just from doing these small projects that popped into my head,” she said. “My first one was The Young and the Restless illustration that I have on my website and I just couldn’t stop. The style stayed the same but I would push myself with composition, size, and color.”

Currently contracting as a designer at independent digital design Studio Freight, Deley also co-created the “mind reading” board game Medium, which Two Dollar Radio attendees had the chance to celebrate and play after its release. In August, Delay also illustrated children’s (and dog lovers) book Good Night, Buckeye with author Dan Wurth, with all proceeds from the book benefitting Canine Companions for Independence. With Deley’s hectic creative schedule, Jubilee could have become an afterthought, but she assures (614) that the show’s creation was intentional, with retrospective, familial ties.

“I came up [with] the name [of Jubilee] for two reasons. One, Jubilee came from the idea of celebrating. I thought it was time to celebrate this style I’ve been creating,” she said. “And two, it’s an homage to my grandparents. My Baba would always make this rich and delicious cookies called ‘jubilees’. They were always doing a craft with me or when I would come visit they were creating something.”

With appreciation for local art venues such as 934 Gallery, No Place Gallery and Roy G Biv, Deley avidly wanted for Jubilee to be placed in Skylab, ready to share her “post-pop art” genre with Columbus. “Skylab was the perfect space to propose this show. Its view of art has always been contemporary and experimental, and that’s how I view everything I make,” she said. “Contemporary art for me is about making things weird and beautiful at the same time and that’s how I hope people perceive Jubilee.

Jubilee opens Jan. 1, 2020 at Skylab Gallery, located at 57 E Gay St., 5th floor.
Visit danielledeley.com or @danielle_deley on Instagram for more information.

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Arts & Culture

Thinking Big: The Amazing Giants bring circus arts to events across town

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If you have been to a local festival, parade, or corporate event where you’ve seen stilt walkers, fire-eaters, hula-hoopers or lyra artists, there’s a good chance you’ve been in the presence of an Amazing Giant. Founded in 2011 by Jessica Minshall, The Amazing Giants was born out of one woman’s love of stilt walking and her friends’ desire to learn the skill. Now a new challenge is looming for the group—a business expansion to Hawaii.

Working in the service industry, Minshall saw a need in Columbus for a different type of entertainment. She taught herself how to walk on stilts for a festival gig out of state. This new hobby intrigued a group of her friends, and they decided to learn, too. From there, The Amazing Giants were born. “My partner and I bought a lot of stilts and just taught people how to do it,” she said. “We all found each other.”

What began as a few friends learning a new skill and having fun together practicing it evolved into a booming business with 40 employees and contract workers, including magicians, face painters and more. They are hired for events to do everything from wearing full bodysuits covered in tiny mirrors and dancing to wearing and serving champagne from large metal skirts to dazzle a crowd.

“We have evolved with different equipment, too,” Minshall said. The Amazing Giants owns the only sway pole in the Midwest. It allows performers to create a large- scale spectacle with an extreme cirque-style pole acrobatic act without the need for a permanent installation. With hundreds of costumes, 20 pairs of stilts, and entertainment offerings of just about every circus art imaginable, The Amazing Giants truly seek to astound.

Having had great success in the Columbus market, Minshall decided to grow her business, and recently brought The Amazing Giants to Honolulu. “I had family out here that I would visit and realized they don’t have anyone doing what we do. There’s not really a group or team of stilt walkers working together,” she said. So Minshall bought six pairs of stilts, and hosts open gyms where interested performers can show off their skills and possibly train on stilts. “They don’t need to send me a resume, necessarily,” she said. “It’s about personality and talent.”

Importantly, Amazing Giants must have an abundance of confidence without an overabundance of ego. “I tell people we have to get comfortable being uncomfortable. As an entertainer you have to get over your shyness and put yourself out there.” The ability to work as a collaborative team player is also key, she said. “Our team often works in tight quarters, and whether or not it is well-received, you have to put on the show as best you can.”

Although Minshall is keeping the headquarters in Columbus, now headed by Chief of Operations Olivia Ranier, she says she is excited about the expansion and her recent move to Honolulu. “It reminds me a lot of Columbus because it has that small-town, big-city feel with a similar {\(metropolitan area) population of around one million people,” Minshall said. And the environment is ripe for her type of business. “In Honolulu, we have events year-round; in Columbus our business slows down after New Year’s Eve,” she said. “There is also a lot more tourism and a convention center that brings in a ton of people.”

Although her business has expanded, don’t for a second go thinking that Minshall is going to forget where she comes from. “A lot of times people ask me where I am from and they say, ‘Wow, I’ve been hearing a lot about Ohio lately.’ I have nothing but good things to say about Columbus and what kind of platform it’s given me. It’s a massive city with a thriving arts and entertainment culture—and it’s extremely underrated. I will be Columbus-promoting forever.”

For more information visit theamazinggiants.com.

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Big Macs and Bowl Games: Enter McDonalds sweepstakes for college football getaway

614now Staff

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Now that Ohio State has secured its bid to play in the 2019 College Football Playoffs, every fan across Columbus is vying for tickets to the Bowl Game. Lucky for you, McDonald’s has the answer.

Today, McDonald’s launches their Buckeye Bowl Game Sweepstakes in partnership with Ohio State Athletics, where one lucky winner will win a trip for two to the 2019 Fiesta Bowl Game on Saturday, Dec. 28, including prime tickets to the game, transportation to and from, plus hotel and travel accommodations.

Fans can enter the Buckeye Bowl Game Sweepstakes by purchasing a Quarter Pounder or Quarter Pounder with cheese from any McDonald’s in the greater Columbus area, either in restaurants or through their favorite delivery service. With each order, customers will receive a golden ticket with entry details, leading them to the sweepstakes website.

And the best part is for every submission placed, McDonald’s Owner/Operators of Columbus will donate $1 to Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio, helping them meet their annual fundraising goal.

“For McDonald’s, and for those of us as local business owners, it’s about more than selling burgers. It’s about creating a lasting impact in our community,” said Mike Telich, Columbus McDonald’s Owner/Operator in a statement. “Supporting RMHC is more than just a donation, its ensuring families with ill or injured children get the emotional and physical support they need, as well an alternative to the financial burden of staying at a hotel and going out for meals."

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