Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Nashville Scene critic's pick ... It's Not Hellfire at Twist Gallery

It's Not Hellfire at Twist Gallery
Do the Twist
Joe Nolan for the Nashville Scene

Consistently the best venue on the Crawl, Twist kicks the year off with a mythological menagerie. Jessica C. White's narrative drawings find furry friends like bunnies and deer taking on the role of mythological mouthpieces, speaking deep moral truths to our uncertain times. To her credit, White's animal oracles don't go for cheap laughs or creep-show schlock. Her picture-book renderings provide a believable setting for their asides, which, at their best, are touching and heartfelt. In the Arcade 73 space, Nashville's Matt Christy returns from his well-received show at The University of the South in Sewanee. Recent Christy shows have included everything from baroque, pop-culture collages to porno-inspired paintings. We're not sure what's on for tonight, but a typical Christie show is half eye candy, half creepy juxtapositions…and half sublime insight. You do the math.

Opening reception 6-9 p.m., Jan. 2, as part of First Saturday. also there will be a second opening reception on January 9th from 6-9 pm

Monday, December 21, 2009

Matt Christy... Wrench Rupture Suture... in Twist 58 ... January 2010

Twist Art Gallery presents: Matt Christy Wrench Rupture Suture in Twist 58

opening January 2nd from 6-9pm as part of the First Saturday Art Crawl in Nashville's Historic Arcade and the 5th Ave. of the Arts
Show runs January 2nd - 30th, 2010

Matt Christy is a writer and an artist from Nashville. He graduated from Watkins College with a BFA in Fine Arts. He has written criticism for Number: an art's journal. Matt might someday pursue a Master's degree in art criticism and critical theory.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

The Tennessean: Sarah Shearer's portraits at Twist 58 question feminine ideals

Sarah Shearer's portraits at Twist 58 question feminine ideals

DECEMBER 20, 2009 The Tennessean

Sarah Shearer: Seven Questions, currently on view at Twist 58, explores the nature of beauty, superficiality, strength, happiness and other ideas in two series of female portraits.

Shearer created a special little world for the show, starting by painting the gallery floors bright pink — a hue somewhere between bubblegum and Pepto Bismol.

The paintings are "pretty feminine and introspective," Shearer says, "so I thought I might as well go with that. It's pretty bold."

Shearer's combinations of texture and pattern are equally bold. In her larger paintings, she positions a woman (or women) staring confidently from the canvas, against striking backgrounds of stripes or elaborate designs rendered in turquoise, gold and other vivid colors. These are made by spraying paint through fabric as a stencil.

Shearer also employed this stenciling technique on the gallery's large windows, creating a white, frosty base over which she painted her name in a flowing script. The resulting signage gives the gallery the appearance of a little boutique. Indeed, it's similar to a hair salon a few doors down.

The smaller paintings in the show are Shearer's newest. They complement the more reserved larger works with harsher, more forceful images and rougher textures built from layers of rubbery, dried latex paint.

Sarah Shearer: Seven Questions remains on view at Twist 58 in the Arcade through Saturday. Gallery hours this week are 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Thursday and 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday. For information, call 1-888-535-5286 or go to www.twistartgallery.com.


Monday, December 14, 2009

Family members branch out with Three Ways Different at Twist Art Gallery

December 13, 2009

Family members branch out with Three Ways Different at Twist Art Gallery

By MiChelle Jones

It's not immediately obvious what Dona Berotti's glass and copper sculptures, Cristina Viscu's graphite drawings and Rob McClurg's ceramic pods have in common. Yet Three Ways Different, on view at Twist Art Gallery through Dec. 26, not only works as a cohesive show, it's also one of the most interesting gallery exhibitions of the year.

The show's theme began taking shape four years ago, when husband-and-wife artists McClurg and Berotti became host parents to Viscu, a young artist from Moldova who was at the time an exchange student in Berotti's advanced placement art class at Hillwood High School. Viscu is now a junior at Watkins College of Art and Design, where McClurg is a sixth-year faculty member.

Pieces in an exhibition

"There was kind of a joke in the family that there was a Cris way, a Dona way and a Rob way, because we all thought very differently," Berotti says. For Father's Day, Berotti and Viscu presented McClurg with a card that said "way." "Then Cris came up with the title for the show, Three Ways Different, because we were all living in the same household, but we all perceive and work in different ways."

Close inspection of Berotti's glasswork reveals textures reminiscent of antique tin ceilings. Indeed, she uses ceiling material when constructing her molds. Viscu's snippets of portraits are at once exquisitely rendered and sketch-like.

For the past few years, McClurg has been making ceramic forms inspired by seeds. They vary in size (the largest are about 22 inches long by 11 inches wide) and the finishes range from smooth and shiny to rough and splotchy, painted to resemble natural clay. Some of the pieces resemble chess pieces, others bear a passing resemblance to sperm, and the largest forms are gourd-like and sometimes contain clay beads that rattle when shaken.

Happy accidents

The second room of Three Ways Different has a more spontaneous, experimental feel than the first. This is partly because while the artists had developed a loose plan for the first room, the second space was more of a work-in-progress during installation.

Two works in particular resulted from late-night improvisation: a piece combining elements of all their work and an interactive piece that took shape when they hung another glass sign — reading "What Are You Looking At?" — over a small settee found in the gallery.

"That happened at 2 o'clock in the morning," Berotti says, laughing. "The whole (idea) with that question was to deconstruct the scene. . . . Are you looking at the art? Are you looking at the person sitting on the couch? Is the person sitting on the couch part of the piece, which they do become. Then the piece becomes constantly changing, because someone new is sitting on the couch."

Berotti says the inclusion of the settee makes the piece, which felt incomplete on its own.

"That was just a very fortuitous thing . . . and apart from that, I will do that if I ever show that work again."

Partners in art

In contrast to the subtlety of that piece is the kinetic feel of the installation on the adjacent wall. McClurg's pods march diagonally toward the ceiling from a small heap on the floor. A glass baby bottle by Berotti is inverted over the pile, spilling copper wire intertwined with Berotti's own hair. Tiny snatches of Viscu's drawings are mixed in among the pods.

"We wanted to do a last piece that was all of us together — a collaborative piece," Berotti explains. "And also that happened late at night. That was actually the play part of the piece, the play part of the exhibition."

"Dona is the catalyst on that," McClurg says. "I would have just gladly closed the boxes back up and said, 'Look, I'm tired, I want to go home.' I did actually say that."

But Berotti prevailed, and the three played around with the arrangement. The following morning, just hours before the opening reception, Viscu and her roommate tweaked the pods so the curly ends were angled, creating the illusion of movement.

Though Berotti and McClurg have curated shows as a team and also worked together on pieces, Berotti describes this as their "first big, major collaboration." It is also an artistic expression of the bond they share with their former exchange student.

"We're still a family," Berotti says. "Even though Cris is not with us, she's still a part of our family."

Additional Facts
What: Three Ways Different, ceramics, glass and pencil on paper by Dona Berotti, Rob McClurg and Cristina Viscu
Where: Twist Art Gallery, Arcade No. 73
When: Through Dec. 26
Hours: 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Thursday–Friday, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday
Admission: free

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

It's not Hellfire: drawings and prints by Jessica C. White... January 2010





Jessica C. White at Twist Art Gallery #73 : January 2010

Similar to the way animals were used in folktales and ancient mythologies to explain the mysterious world of the past, I create images with animals that attempt to make sense of uncertainties in our world today. Children’s book images, medieval bestiaries, and folk tales inspire my investigations both visually and textually. Much of my exploration revolves around good versus evil, right and wrong, justice, and wonder.

I relocated to Asheville, NC after graduating in the spring of 2009 from University of Iowa with an MFA in printmaking and a Graduate Certificate in Book Studies. There, nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, I established Heroes & Criminals Press, a fine press following in the tradition of artisans in the crafts of printing and bookbinding, but with the driving principle that “small animals make first paths” - ordinary people can make a big impact on the world through simple, everyday actions. Through the press, my goal is to create my own work as well as to act as a vehicle for emerging writers. Along with printing and binding, I continue to explore ideas through painting and drawing.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Twist loves the Nashville Scene!!

Three Ways Different at Twist
Three Way Plus One
Joe Nolan

This month Twist continues to consistently bring diverse artists and work to the Gallery Crawl. This holiday season finds Rob McClurg, Dona Berotti and Cristina Viscu presenting a group show featuring ceramics, glass and—the highlight of the exhibit—Viscu's graphite drawings, which are as impressive for their emotional weight as they are for their draftsmanship. 3 Ways Different will be on display in Arcade 73 while Twist's space in Arcade 58 will feature a solo show by Sarah Shearer. Shearer's colorful canvases are figurative and narrative and are often populated by women in period gowns or hidden behind antique masks, alluding to the mysteries that inhabit our relationships with one another and the day-to-day world around us.

Opening Reception 6-9 p.m., Dec. 5.

Handmade in the Arcade
The Handmade Tale
Steve Haruch

Since so much of the junk lining store shelves was manufactured in some horrible, lead-belching plant where workers are routinely sickened by fumes, maimed by machinery or exhausted by the brutal pace, it’s at the very least a conscionable act to browse the cottage-industrial wares on display at Handmade in the Arcade. The craft fair and artisan market will feature the handiwork—featuring recycled and reclaimed materials—of local artists including Gathering Spriggs, Amanda Conley, Elizabeth Chandler, Julie Morris, Kim Smith, Ken and Melody Shipley, Valerie Harrell, Freshie and Zero, to name but a few. Books, T-shirts, jewelry and pottery will be among the items available, with prices ranging from $5 to $150.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Handmade in the Arcade december 5th 1-9pm

WHO: 25+ local artists and artisans

WHAT: Handmade in the Arcade: Craft Fair and Artisan Market. Handmade crafts for sale by local Nashville artists. Work featuring recycled and reclaimed materials. Affordable with average prices ranging from $5 to $150. Handmade books, t-shirts, prints and paintings, jewelry, scarves, clothing, pottery, holiday gifts.

WHEN: Saturday, December 5th from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m.

WHERE: In the Historic Arcade in Downtown Nashville,

234 5th Ave. North

The event is sponsored by Twist Art Gallery.

WHY: Twist Art Gallery supports the work of local artists and provides this opportunity for the community to come out and do the same. This holiday season is a great time to patronize local small businesses, especially those that are centered around handmade crafts and sustainable products. Every purchase supports the Nashville community of artists and proceeds go directly to each artist.

MORE INFO: Twist Art Gallery

73 Arcade
Nashville, TN 37219
(888) 535-5286

Eve Peach and Heather Spriggs-Thompson of Gathering Spriggs

Gathering Spriggs.jpg:
Gathering Spriggs booth at Nov. Handmade in the Arcade event

Amanda Conley of Bijou Girl Designs

"Bella Be" vintage/repurposed jewelry created by artist Elizabeth Streight and 15-year-old creative-jeweler-in-training Jasmine Rich.

Twist Art Gallery
73 Arcade
Nashville, TN 37219
ph. 888-535-5286
Don't miss Handmade in the Arcade: Dec 5th

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Twist Art Gallery December 2009 part 2

In space 58 in December opening for the art crawl night with the other show from 6-9pm
Sarah Shearer

Twist Art Gallery December 2009

Twist Art Gallery Presents:

In space 73…
3 ways different
Rob McClurg, Dona Berotti, and Cristina Viscu

ceramics, glass and pencil+paper

Opening December 5th from 6-9 as part of the first Saturday Art Crawl
in Nashville’s Historic Arcade
Shows run from December 5 - 24, 2009

Crema +Twist = crafty goodness for safe haven

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Monday, November 2, 2009

works by Gregg Schlanger, Monica Quattrochio & Kelly Bonadies at Twist Art Gallery

Works by Gregg Schlanger, Monica Quattrochio & Kelly Bonadies at Twist
Three Is a Magic Number
Joe Nolan
Nashville Scene

Twist Gallery welcomes three unique artists working in diverse media to their twin spaces in the Downtown Arcade. Gregg Schlanger and Monica Quattrochio will fill Twist's Arcade 73 space with food for the mind and spirit alike. Schlanger's conceptual installation work usually includes community involvement or a public component. Expect to see a project that might look at home across the Arcade in the Blend Studio space. Quattrochio's meditative photographs of water present the viewer with sea-green abstracts that are as much studies of motion and change as they are reminders of a precious resource. Kelly Bonadies will be displaying her first solo show at Arcade 58. Bonadies seems to have an ambivalent relationship to scale: she can paint very small and (recently) very large. We're not sure what she has in store for tonight, but she is certainly one of the most promising young painters in Nashville and this stop should be a top priority for any art-crawler in the know.

Opening reception 6-9 p.m., Nov. 7.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

The Guardian writes about travel to Nashville ...including Twist Art Gallery

A little bit country, a lot more rock'n'roll
Nashville is kicking off its cowboy boots. Its bars, gig venues and restaurants are as hip as the city's band of the moment, Kings of Leon. Wyndham Wallace explores the Bible belt's shiny buckle

Wyndham Wallace

The Guardian, Saturday 28 February 2009

Nashville home boy, Caleb Folliwell of the Kings of Leon. Photograph: Simone Joyner/Getty Images

Under a brutally bright sun, Nashville's alternative music community is sipping cocktails on the roof of the Icon Building in The Gulch, a former warehouse district increasingly populated by sleek high-rises and buzzing restaurants. Pant-suited Americana singers, drainpipe-jeaned punks and flannel-shirted indie rockers are gathered to celebrate the Next Big Nashville, an annual event designed to highlight the wealth and variety of bands in a place that, despite being labelled Music City USA, is renowned for country music and little else.

To outsiders their presence is probably unexpected. Nashville is best known for squeaky-clean residents like Dolly Parton, Reba McEntire and Miley Cyrus (daughter of Billy Ray Cyrus, aka Hannah Montana) and honky-tonk bars and barbecue shacks. But the city, like its skyline, is changing. It is attracting celebrities from beyond its former cultural reach, with the White Stripes' Jack White moving here, cult director Harmony Korine returning to his former hometown, Nicole Kidman settling down with husband Keith Urban and Robert Plant recording the Grammy Award-winning album Raising Sand with bluegrass artist Alison Krauss. Formerly down-at-heel neighbourhoods are being revitalised, new restaurants and bars open weekly, and the city's country music heritage is finally competing for attention with the likes of pop rockers Paramore and 2009 Brit and NME award-winners Kings of Leon.

This burgeoning scene may be cool but the city's unpretentious lifestyle and warm southern welcome mean it is also very accessible, making Nashville one of America's most attractive destinations for those seeking an alternative to the homogenous mall culture of most of its big cities.


While honky-tonk bars remain popular down on Broadway, and Music Row continues to shelter an industry largely focused on country and Christian acts, elsewhere a vibrant alternative scene is emerging. Next Big Nashville's annual festivities (nextbignashville.net) provide an opportunity to catch many local favourites, from the pop-punk of the Privates to the Dynamites' retro-soul, while clubs such as The End (2219 Elliston Place) - a run-down, dark and beery space with a fondness for punk rock - and The Exit/In (2208 Elliston Place, exitin.com), the larger and smarter venue, showcase native and out-of-town talent year long. If it's established acts you're searching for, the Ryman Auditorium (116 Fifth Avenue North, ryman.com) is the place to go. To catch emerging talent, keep an eye out for MySpace bulletins and leaflets in local record stores. These leak information about the city's booming house party scene, centred around local label Infinity Cat's leading acts Jeff and MeeMaw, with the latter regularly hosting chaotic shows in the basement of their home.

Best music shop in town

Grimey's New & Preloved Music Store, with co-owner Mike Grimes second from left, Nashville
London has the Rough Trade Shop, New York has Other Music, but Nashville presents stiff competition with one of the world's best independent record shops, Grimey's (1604 8th Avenue South, grimeys.com). Co-owner Mike Grimes established his hipster credentials with the Slow Bar in the then no-go area of East Nashville in the 90s, but when the previous site of his record shop proved too small, and rising rents - arguably, initiated by the success of his enterprises - forced him out, he upped sticks and opened a shop just south of downtown, where he also started booking shows in The Basement below. His determination to offer alternatives to mainstream country ensures the store, staffed mainly by local musicians, offers an enviable selection of underground sounds alongside a sizeable assortment of "pre-loved" CDs and LPs. The staff will also recommend and provide tickets for the best shows downstairs. Such is the reputation of both the store and the club beneath that, after signing records upstairs, Metallica performed an intimate show in June last year for just 150 fans.


The Family Wash (2038 Greenwood Avenue, familywash.com), an intimate bar, restaurant and venue in East Nashville, was built using material from a launderette that formerly occupied the land. The speciality, shepherd's pie, is eaten at small tables clustered in front of a tiny stage that showcases local musical talent. The Red Door Saloon (1816 Division Street, thereddoorsaloon.com) is a more rowdy affair with a traditional roadhouse bar vibe, favoured during the week by studio workers from nearby Music Row checking out the sports results on TVs over the bar and at the weekend by younger city residents letting their hair down. But the Springwater Supper Club (115 27th Avenue North, springwatersupperclub.com), a former speakeasy frequented through the years by Willie Nelson, Townes Van Zandt and these days by the many members of local musical heroes Lambchop, remains the most popular indie-rock hangout. Harmony Korine even chose its dive bar surroundings as the location for the recent Budweiser adverts featuring eccentric regular Dave Cloud.


Despite its retro leanings, Nashville is not afraid of the modern. In the once sleepy neighbourhoods of East Nashville, a burgeoning drinking and dining scene has sprung up, centred around the Five Points crossroads where Jack White's favourite restaurant, Marché Artisan Foods (1000 Main Street, marcheartisanfoods.com), stands across a car park from Gillian Welch's Woodland Recording Studios. Also offering specialist grocery and delicatessen items, Marché concentrates on freshly prepared Mediterranean-inspired cuisine served in a light and airy dining area. Welch has herself been lured out of recording sessions by nearby Rumours East's (1112 Woodland St, rumourswinebar.com/east) impressive wine list, beautifully presented food (including plenty of fish) and spacious patio. Those looking for something a little less pricey, however, can take advantage of the city's multicultural riches. A third of Nashville's citizens are non-white, including America's largest Kurdish population, which means there's a wide choice of international cuisine, with increasingly popular Ethiopian establishments alongside plenty of Japanese and Italian. Mexican food is hardest to beat - La Hacienda (2615 Nolensville Road, lahaciendainc.com) was first and remains justifiably packed - but City House's (1222 4th Avenue North, cityhousenashville.com) contemporary Italian also attracts high praise, with Robert Plant among its regulars.


A thriving independent cafe culture means you're never far from a good coffee. Especially favoured is Nashville's original coffeehouse Bongo Java (2007 Belmont Blvd, bongojava.com), winner of local paper Nashville Scene's Best Coffeehouse Award from 1994-2007 (it dropped to second place in 2008 behind its sister cafe Fido) and creator of the internationally famous Nunbun, a cinnamon bun that looks like Mother Theresa. They also roast their own coffee. Newly opened Crema (15 Hermitage Avenue, crema-coffee.com) is arguably the most adventurous establishment, offering concoctions such as Café Tom Kai (a blend of coconut milk, Kaffir lime syrup and espresso), but Portland Brew's (2605 12th Avenue South, portlandbrewcoffee.com) deliberately sparse and indie-rocker-friendly premises is the place to rub shoulders with the likes of Jack White's Raconteurs.


Mainstream Nashville fashion may have changed little since Dolly Parton worked 9 to 5, but a number of local boutiques have set out to combine retro themes with a contemporary twist. 12th Avenue South houses a variety, from the mildly hippy Serendipity (2301 12th Avenue South, serendipity12th.com) to Local Honey's (1207 Linden Avenue, localhoneynashville.blogspot.com) vintage threads. But Two Elle (2309 12th Avenue South, twoelle.com), a cosy store established in a grey clapboard house set back from the street, is the most cutting edge, stocking affordable designer clothes sourced from across the US alongside vintage sunglasses, jewellery and chocolate. It specialises in the informal but chic look favoured by those too hip for Urban Outfitters, and its liberal credentials were confirmed by a 10% discount for anyone registering to vote in last year's presidential election while at the store.


The community spirit isn't restricted to music: on the first Saturday evening of every month, galleries in the 105-year-old Arcade (224 5th Avenue North) - a short line dance from Broadway's honky-tonk and bluegrass bars - open their doors for the free Art Crawl. Around 1,000 people visit the Twist Art Gallery (twistartgallery.com) and The Showroom for a mix of contemporary installations, painting, sculpture and photography. Crowds spill across Fifth Avenue to visit The Arts Company (215 5th Avenue North, theartscompany.com), one of the downtown district's most enduring visual art spaces, along with newcomers like the Rymer Gallery (233 5th Avenue North, therymergallery.com) and Tinney Contemporary (237 5th Avenue North, tinneycontemporary.com). The Frist Center For The Visual Arts (919 Broadway, fristcenter.org) provides a more mainstream approach while presenting some of the city's most ambitious visual art programming. Recent exhibitions have featured everything from Rodin to the modern artists of the Société Anonyme and the stunning large-format photography of contemporary Australian artist Rosemary Laing.

• Flights to Nashville from Heathrow start at £373 inc taxes through Trailfinders (0845 050 5892, trailfinders.com). Doubles at Hotel Indigo (001 615 329 4200, ichotelsgroup.com) from around $99 per night plus tax. The Next Big Nashville (nextbignashville.net) is on 7-11 October.

· This article was amended on Monday March 2 2009. Robert Plant and Alison Krauss' Grammy Award-winning album was called Raising Sand, not Please Read the Letter. This has been corrected.

guardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2009

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

interview from super cool blog... Joe Nolan's Insomnia


This post is actually an interview with Nashville photographer/musician/bon vivant and raconteur, Tony Doling. We discuss Halfway Across A Bridge: Super8 Stills, his latest exhibit at Twist Art Gallery in downtown Nashville's historic Arcade building.

JN: Why don't you tell me a little bit about your new exhibit. How did the concept evolve?

TD: I've been thinking about this show for a couple of years now. I lived in Marin County from 1999-2000. LA for 2 months in 2000. I lived across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco for almost a year, and crossed that bridge probably 50-60 times. For an individual who would like to consider himself an artist/photographer, I never took a single photo of that bridge. I mean, why bother? It's all been done. What I did do is shoot about 10 seconds of black and white Super 8 film footage by sticking my camera out of the window of a moving car while crossing that bridge. For some time now, I've wanted to display the random, incomplete images that came out of these 10 seconds. After a stunning amount of time scanning tiny little frames, that's the show that I came up with.

JN: Obviously, in Marin County the bridge takes on a number of practical, symbolic and historical meanings. How did the bridge figure into your world view during that time?

TD: As a guy who grew up in Louisiana, I was clearly affected by all the many definitive images I'd seen across the rest of the country (The Golden Gate Bridge, The Chicago and NYC skylines, The Seattle Space Needle and on and on). My only relationship was to see something become more beautiful and majestic in person than any of the media images could have attempted to portray.

JN: Still, the images of the bridge color the perception of the real thing. The real thing can sometimes become almost unreal once we have been saturated with mediated messages about what something is. In this case, images of the bridge are a cliché. What made you decide to shoot your footage at that moment? What made you roll down that window?

TD: We were shooting a lot of Super 8 at the time (my brother, Shane and I, when we had common days off) and I had a camera loaded with film and didn't want to turn around to get a legit shot, but couldn't pass up the opportunity to capture the fact that we had actually seen the thing in person. Not a lot of foresight involved.

JN: Its one thing to create some work, its another thing to put it on display. You've started showing more work formally in the last year, but what made you decide to pursue getting this show together?

TD: Again, to be totally honest, an opening came up for the main gallery at Twist, and, given the age of the footage and concept, I realized I would probably never do it if I didn't force myself to do it now.

JN: You've displayed your photos before, but this is more of a conceptual installation. Does this show represent something new in your opinion? A step up? A step out?

TD: I don't know the specific term I would give it, but it is an artistic risk for me. I like to consider myself a simple, no frills guy who doesn't take himself too seriously. I never had a "Master Plan" for this when I shot this. I was just glad to have a day off. The biggest fear for me doing something different than I've done before is that the reaction may be "Who does this guy think he is?" There's definitely a worry that people will think I'm intentionally trying to do something conceptual out of context with my character, and that the result may be insincere. I hope it's not.

JN: At first, I began to suspect that your ambivalence regarding this show was disingenuous, especially given your confidence regarding your musical projects. (Doling is a composer/musician with the Nashville-based pop-collective, Bulb). However, I was fascinated to find out that you look at this show as something separate from your other projects. And you're genuinely worried about it! (Laughs). Tell me a bit about how this is "something different" from your musical efforts.

TD: Well, first of all, I've been playing music for so long, I don't really even have to think about it. In the work I do with Todd ((Greene), a great artist here in Nashville, as well) in bulb, it's so collaborative. I write most of the music and he writes the lyrics and melodies. It's a kind of assembly line in regards to the specialization and by far the most collaborative thing I've ever done. It's a unique way of doing music, but seems to work as we are just wrapping up our 15th album. www.bulbmusic.com (thanks for the plug, Joe). With the Twist show, although I've used many great suggestions from friends, it's still just my name on it - so I feel alot more pressure. There's always a worry in my new ventures into visual arts about the fact that by displaying your work, you have to be willing to let people like it or not, and maybe even tell you that they don't like it. I need to get used to that and be okay with it.

JN: We all certainly have to find a way to continually take ground despite criticism, rejection or - even worse - disinterest. I think my solution is always to stay so busy that I don't have time to consider how others might perceive a given effort. It helps to be immersed in an expansive project. Have you been looking for a bigger project to do or did the material inspire the show?

TD: The accidental nature of the footage and the question of what to do with it definitely inspired the show. The "something bigger" idea scares the shit out of me.

JN: Will you be pursuing similar ideas/projects in the future?

TD: I have no idea where to go now. Any ideas?

JN: What will make this show “successful” in your eyes?

TD: I hope that some of the girls at the after-party might talk to me since I had stuff at the Gallery Crawl.

Doling's project will open this Saturday night, October 3 with an artist reception from 6 – 9 p.m. at Twist Gallery's space at 73 Arcade.

Twist Art Gallery takes part in Nashville sound crawl october 3 2009

nashville scene

SoundCrawl: Nashville at Various Galleries
Now Hear This
Joe Nolan

While Nashville art-abouts may be caught off guard by eye-catching finds during this Saturday’s Gallery Crawl, it’s likely that they’ll be surprised by what they hear as well. In addition to the visual art packing the Fifth Avenue and Arcade Galleries, this month’s Crawl will also play host to an international exhibition of sound artists whose work will be heard throughout the event, inviting viewers to become listeners, experiencing the way that sound can create mood, define space, imply movement and more. Curated by Nashville composers Aaron Hoke Doenges and Kyle J. Baker, SoundCrawl will feature sound artists from around the globe and will be hosted in various spaces, but our money is on the Sanctuary and Chapel spaces at the Downtown Presbyterian Church, where the amazing acoustics and quiet settings should lend to a long, loving listen.

Nashville Public Radio “Sound Crawl” (transcript)

Nashville’s “Sound Crawl” (transcript)
Wednesday, September 30th, 2009
By Kim Green

In an industry town that polishes and packages its sound to perfection, it can’t be easy to get folks to rethink their ideas of what music is. But for composers Aaron Doenges and Kyle Baker, experimental digital sound like this is as vital a genre as country and bluegrass. That why they’ve launched SoundCrawl: Nashville — a festival featuring sound art by composers from all over the world . WPLN’s Kim Green reports – For more information: www.soundcrawlnashville.com

Audio for this feature is available here.

GREEN: Composer Aaron Doenges finds music where you least expect it.

(SOUND: coins spinning)

DOENGES: “That’s a sample that I’ve created myself of a quarter spinning on one of the end tables in my house.”

GREEN: Doenges calls himself an “electroacoustic” composer. It’s a broad category that basically means music produced digitally, using anything from synthesizers to theremins to recordings of everyday sounds, manipulated using audio editing software. (SOUND: coins dropping into a machine)

DOENGES: “Another sound enters that is a coin being put into a slot machine or a vending machine of some sort.”

GREEN: Coins. Thousands of them. This is one of Doenges’ compositions. It’s called “The Suicide of Freddie Mac,” and it’s featured in the festival. By manipulating recognizable sounds that connote money, the piece journeys through recent economic history. The clanging of slot machines and the Wall Street bell build towards a giddy climax. A crowd cheers as an ATM dispenses easy cash, evoking an era of feverish speculation. Finally, the bubble bursts. :25

DOENGES: “…and then suddenly you get that kind of alarm sound, // when the ATM doesn’t give you money. And every time that happens, the crowd kinda boos. Until it gets to a breaking point where there’s a gunshot // and then the ATM sounds turn into a heart monitor like you would hear at a hospital, and then it’s back to that initial quarter spinning.”

(SOUND: coin spins)

GREEN: Doenges and Kyle Baker, both recent grads of Belmont’s masters in composition program, dreamed up the SoundCrawl festival as a way to showcase and advocate for the kind of experimental work they do— which often has a hard time finding an ear outside the academic music world. One night last summer they posted a call for submissions online.

BAKER: “And we woke up the next morning at eight and we had six emails with submissions, and none of them were from the United States.”

Ambi: “Grinny Memories”

GREEN: This piece is called “Grinny Memories,” by a Lithuanian sound artist who goes by “Gintas K.” It’s one of thirty-six chosen for the festival from nearly two hundred and fifty pieces submitted. Some are tranquil soundscapes. Others use ordinary sounds to transport you to a place.

(SOUND: farm sounds – mooing, neighing)

GREEN: — and then bend and distort the familiar into something new.

(SOUND: Farm sounds change to more jarring electronic noise)

GREEN: A few entries feature recorded voices, rendered abstract and poetic by repetition. Like this piece, which Kyle Baker created using verses from an audio Bible.

(SOUND: “Hate what is evil. Cling to what is good…“)

GREEN: On Saturday night, during Downtown Nashville’s monthly Art Crawl event, the sound pieces will be playing at seven downtown galleries, most of them in the Arcade. By associating SoundCrawl with a popular gallery tour, Doenges and Baker hope to harness an audience that’s already open to experiencing something unconventional.

(SOUND: “Tranquility”)

GREEN: Still, they know they’re taking a big risk introducing this kind of avant-garde work to new ears.

BAKER: “We tried to select pieces that moved pretty quickly, knowing there are people who’ve never heard anything like this outside of maybe Bjork or Imogene Heap or something. And this can open up their eyes.”

(SOUND: “Tranquility” up full)

GREEN: What’s opened Doenges and Baker’s eyes is the response they’re getting from the local creative community as word of the festival gets out. Even after the deadline, audio engineers, technicians, and all kinds of folks who usually help others make music, keep submitting pieces. Baker says these are the people whose creativity he wants to encourage. People who engineer Bob Dylan’s album at their day job, and then play with their digital audio software in the basement at night. These are the people who push the envelope —

BAKER: “..the tinkerers and the entrepreneurs and the inventors, because they’re exploring just to explore, they are valuable to the rest of society as explorers. And you’ll see things move from an avant-garde piece to a pop album in two or three years, and that space is getting closer and closer and closer.”

GREEN: As with any vanguard movement, some experiments and innovations will always fail. But the ones that succeed will likely blaze the trail for a mainstream culture following closely in their wake. For Nashville Public Radio, I’m Kim Green.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

party for My Mom and Halfway Across A Bridge: Super8 Stills at Twist

Nashville Scene critic's pick
Party for My Mom and Halfway Across A Bridge: Super8 Stills at Twist
Golden Gate Mommy Party
Joe Nolan

This month, Twist opens two shows with fundamentally different origins. One is born from a connection with one’s own primal beginnings, and the other is an afterthought in slow motion. Mandy Stoller’s multimedia work invokes family, cats with spaceships and Japanese movie monsters to delight and disturb. Stoller’s Party for My Mom will celebrate “the most frickin’ amazing person in the whole wide world!” at Arcade 58. Tony Doling’s Halfway Across A Bridge: Super8 Stills, presents single, successive, black-and-white images from eight seconds of film the photographer shot from the window of a car crossing the Golden Gate Bridge, the most photographed bridge in the world. Is this an ironic gimmick or a kind of haphazard poetics that teases the transcendent from the tiresome? Find out tonight at Arcade 73.

Opening reception 6-9 p.m., Oct. 3.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

J.Todd Greene's Twist satellite show at the werthan lofts


Twist Art Gallery presents....in October 2009

Twist Art Gallery presents:

Tony Doling in space 73

and Mandy Stoller in space 58

we are also participating in the sound crawl

opening October 3rd from 6-9 pm 2009

show runs through October 3-31 2009

Tony Doling

"Halfway Across A Bridge: Super8 Stills" at twist art gallery #73

Artist statement: "I spent about a year living in Northern California
back in 2000. In all the times I crossed the Golden Gate Bridge, or
stared awestruck from the Marin Headlands or Ocean Beach, the innate
photographic genius living inside of me never snapped a single picture
of this stunningly beautiful object. All I managed to get was about
eight seconds of shaky black and white Super 8 footage by sticking a
camera out of my brother's moving car. this has become a series of photographs.


Mandy Stoller at twist etc. 58

My mom is so awesome I thought, "I should throw a party for my mom."
She has inspired my work of Rhonda and Agatha and has impressed upon
me a country accent that randomly comes out without warning. So let’s
celebrate my mom for being the most frickin’ amazing person in the
whole wide world!!

Come celebrate my mom on October 3rd from 6-9pm at Twist Gallery
Studio 58! There will be cake!!

sound crawl October 3rd from 6-9 pm

about SoundCrawl:Nashville Picture a Saturday night in Nashville when all the galleries are open. Beautiful people, drinks in hand, drift from one gallery to another to experience the best the city has to offer in visual art.

Now imagine that at various points along the way something new has been added, an opportunity to experience a new kind of art, art that you HEAR....sound art.

So in between the experience of the visual arts, artists and guests alike gather to listen to....a rhythmic beat of water drops....or a dizzying immersion of the sound of coins moving through space...synthetic audio wrapping around, tickling the ear drums of the city.

That evening is coming to Nashville on October 3, from 6-9pm, with SoundCrawl:Nashville.

For the first time ever, Nashville will introduce a sound art festival in conjunction with the city's monthly Art Crawl. On October 3 Nashvillians will be among the first in the nation to experience a festival of this type, an international festival bringing new compositions from all over the world.

Where better to introduce this than Music City.

about the ArtCrawl: (from www.artatthearcade.com):Every first Saturday of the month, the historic Arcade in downtown Nashville comes to life with over one thousand visitors. Multiple galleries open their doors to avid art lovers as well as anyone else that is just curious to see what the Gallery Crawl is all about. Art at the Arcade is a collective organization that hosts an assortment of contemporary artists from throughout the world to Nashville.

about SoundArt: What is Sound Art? Between 1930 and 1965, composer Edgard Varèse gave a series of lectures that have since been collected and titled “The Liberation of Sound.” In these lectures, Varese was trying to understand – and explain – his own approach to sonic expression. He, along with Pierre Schaeffer and others, began to explore the organization of sonic materials – sounds from the ambient world, evolving electronic technology, and the traditional instruments used for centuries– in any and every combination into cohesive works of audio art on phonograph (and then tape, and now computer).

The only definition that seemed to fit his music was simply: “organized sound.”

This definition has been given several labels through the years: musique concrète (in the French, Varèse and Schaeffer’s native tongue), electroacoustic music, sound collage, sound music, sound art, etc., etc. Some of these labels focus on very specific types of audio used. Some do not. Each one, however, is all encompassing of sound. Any sound. That has been organized in some way.

It’s a pretty broad definition.

The cultural and mechanical forces that influenced Varèse and Schaeffer have only become more powerful in the intervening years. With the advent of the computer and audio software, the production possibilities of sound organization – something that this town knows a bit about - seem endless. This power has brought with it technological ubiquity – computers are everywhere – and with ubiquity has come the commonplace, and with the commonplace comes the ability to focus not only on the medium (the technology used) but also on the expression (the art of the sounds used). And has changed the art of sound as we know it.

So what is sound art?

Sound \'saund\: the sensation perceived by the sense of hearing

Art \'ärt\: the conscious use of skill and creative imagination especially in the production of aesthetic objects

Sound Art \'saund ' ärt\: The conscious use of skill and creative imagination in producing aesthetic sensations perceived by the sense of hearing.

Sound. Collage. Expression. Audio. Organization. Consciousness. Creativity. Music. Art.

about the Directors: Kyle J. Baker and Aaron Hoke Doenges

Kyle J. Baker is a composer and creator in Nashville, Tennessee. While thoughtful and quick-witted in person, Kyle's raw, rhythmic and cacaphonic music turns the classical idiom on its ear. When not orchestrating cacaphony Kyle dreams up new experiences drawing on his background in theatre and interest in disruptive innovation. His music can be found at kylejbaker.com; his ideas can be found at thinkingcreator.net.

Aaron Hoke Doenges is an electroacoustic composer based in Nashville, Tennessee. While influences ranging from J.S. Bach and Arnold Schoenberg to John Cage, Edgard Varese', Jonty Harrison, Radiohead and Sigur Ros are present in Doenges’ approach to music, he blends his unique electroacoustic style through a collage of aural pictures. He explores through listening, writing and musical experimentation, searching the world around him for thoughts, sounds and melodies that can be pieced together in ways to provoke attention, thought and perhaps dialog. Music and other info can be found at www.aaronhokedoenges.com.

Lady parties by Elizabeth Alley in the Tennessean

'Lady parties' inspire show of paintings at Twist
September 20, 2009

It's been two years since Elizabeth Alley last attended a baby shower, but she's spent the past nine months revisiting a lifetime of baby and bridal showers while working on her latest series of paintings and sketches. The fruits of that labor are currently on view at Twist Art Gallery.

Alley's small- to medium-size paintings offer intimate glimpses into a world of petit fours and bags stuffed with tissue paper; cropped views show a row of torsos or crossed legs, an expectant mother's stomach and lots of stylish shoes.

"It started as looking at pictures of . . . friends, sisters and mothers, mothers and daughters," Memphis-based Alley says of the series she refers to as "lady parties." Some of the source photos were hers, others were borrowed — some dating from the 1960s. The resulting lush oil-on-canvas (and one or two acrylic) paintings appear both contemporary and timeless.

An installation in the gallery's back room combines sketches and text in a manner similar to a graphic book; the pages are arranged to spell out a word related to the show. Twist's Beth Gilmore carried the motif of Alley's gray paper mountings throughout show by painting a wide gray stripe around the walls.

Alley's paintings and sketches remain on view at Twist through Saturday. The gallery is located in the Arcade, Suite 73, and is open 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Thursday-Friday and 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday. For information, call 1-888-535-5286 or go to www.twistartgallery.com.


Wednesday, September 9, 2009

workforce rebellion posters

I was very happy to receive a poster at the most recent art crawl from the workforce rebellion. they wrote this on their blog about the night :) THANKS WORKFORCE REBELLION!!!


Project: Gallery Owner Operator Appreciation

The Art Crawl is a very powerful force in the art community here in Nashville, so we decided to have a gallery owner operator appreciation night. We thank all the hard work they put in each month getting these shows together to create an unbelievable evening every first Saturday. Thanks and keep up the good work.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

first view of the Colorado River

"The Last Roll: Kodachrome 64" at Twist 58.

The image is titled "First view of the Colorado River" and the image
is by , Elizabeth Streight.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

nashville Scene..critic's pick Twist Art Gallery

Nashville Scene Critic's Pick

The Last Roll and Elizabeth Alley
Two to Twist
Joe Nolan

Having just celebrated its third birthday, Twist Gallery isn’t willing to rest on its colorful laurels. Delivering another one-two-punch, the gallery brings a pair of new shows to the Arcade this month, both of which find their connections through photography. The Last Roll is a diverse group show of local photographers shooting rolls of Kodachrome 64 film, offering their own unique insights on the end of the discontinued medium. The show features work by Elizabeth Streight, Scott Simontacchi, Jonathan Rodgers and Anthony Doling. While this darkroom dirge plays out in Twist’s Arcade 58 space, the gallery’s Arcade 73 space will play host to work by Elizabeth Alley, whose narrative paintings are informed by a photographer’s sense of composition and perspective.

Opening reception 6-9 p.m., Sept. 5, as part of First Saturday.

Monday, August 24, 2009

The Last Roll: Kodachrome 64 at Twist 58

The Last Roll: Kodachrome 64
4 photographers pay their respects in light of the death of film

Twist Art Gallery #58

Saturday, September 5, 2009
6:00pm - 9:00pm

In conjunction with the FIRST SATURDAY Art Crawl, Anthony Doling, Jonathan Rodgers, Scott Simontacchi, and Elizabeth Streight present photographs using a dying medium, Kodachrome Film.

Kodak announced only several months ago its discontinuation of the highly revered and well-loved slide film. Currently, only one lab (located in rural Kansas) will officially process this film.

Twist Art Gallery presents this funeral service of sorts...
"Peace, love, and Kodachrome!"

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Twist art show in 1979 september 12th 2009

Life on mars? maybe , come back in time with the Twist Art Gallery to 1979 for one night only.....
Twist Art Gallery and Welcome to 1979 studios present a showing of visual art in an audio environment September 12th 2009 starting around 7 pm till whenever we feel like it. expect wax tracks and snacks as usual for the studio and a dance party!!

visual artists include:
Liz Streight
Mandy Stoller
Nick Stolle
Kelly Bonadies
Beth Gilmore
and others....

about the venue:


Thursday, August 13, 2009

A shift in perspective yields hidden meaning in Angela Burks' arresting work

A shift in perspective yields hidden meaning in Angela Burks' arresting work

Nashville Scene
By David Maddox
Published on August 12, 2009 at 8:10am

Paintings By Angela Burks
Through Aug. 29 at Twist Art Gallery

Artworks can have an uncanny ability to change character in front of your eyes. An initial impression, perhaps triggered by the most vivid element in the piece, may suggest one set of qualities—hot or cold, violent or peaceful—or subject matter that reflects either world events or private dramas. As you spend time staring at the thing, sometimes it turns 180 degrees, and what seemed dark now seems light. The paintings by Angela Burks at Twist Gallery play these games. Initial impressions of violence give way to something much more measured, and overtones of historical cataclysms blend into portraits of everyday life.

This show at Twist marks the first solo show in Nashville by Burks, a faculty member in the art department at MTSU, and it also marks Twist gallery's third year of operations. Twist has become a reliable source for just this sort of opportunity—a thorough look at local artists who have developed a mature body of work.

By virtue of size and composition, two paintings of a person seated in a simple interior may draw a viewer's attention first. In both, the person's face explodes into bloody slashes of red. It seems like a premonitory forensic picture, catching the person in a calm moment, but imagining violence to come.

This is a case where getting closer changes the painting. The red colors are an undercoat, covering much of the canvas and seeping out in seams of windows or the outlines of a baby doll. Seen this way, the red elements read like a sketch of the body's interior musculature, as if Burks started with illustrations from Gray's Anatomy and then layered on skin. From this perspective, the painting is not a premonition of violence, but a piece of careful, almost scientific construction. The quiet interiors are not about to erupt in noise and destruction, and the vivid colors reveal life underlying the surface, not death to come.

Those two paintings are older. The more recent pieces in the show continue to work with processes of rupture, but move into different images and materials. They are painted on quilted or floral print fabric, and several combine images of the female body with discordant elements like train wheels, planes or ants. The most striking take the fabric out of a frame and present it hanging loosely.

One set of paintings uses a whole sheet of fabric, hung unframed but stiffened with glue. They show a woman's body, but in each case her head is not visible—either obliterated by a thicket of trains where her head would be, or cut off by the framing of the image. The flesh is intimate, but the person is anonymous; the trains and planes intrude into the quietness of a human body at rest.

Another set of paintings goes a step further by working with shredded pieces of fabric. After dipping them in glue and letting them take a shape, Burks paints on a bit of a female body, like arms crossed against the chest. Over this layer she applies prints of ants—producing a woman's image atop shreds of household detritus, her space literally invaded. The juxtaposition suggests someone holding on to her sense of self in the face of decay.

Burks got her MFA from Tulane, and it is tempting to see these paintings in reference to New Orleans and the destruction left by Katrina, whose floodwaters scattered the ruined contents of people's private lives. But this is another case where first impressions give way to something quieter. The combination of materials and images suggests the way the physical and social lives of women intertwine with life's inevitable imperfections. No one needs a cataclysm like Katrina to have an experience of fragmentation, decay and unwanted intrusion.

What's more, the sense of these paintings as fragments gives way to a more integrated vision. The loose fabric, like a sheet, begins to take on the shape of the bodies it covers. Any time a painting betrays its three-dimensionality with visible variations in surface depth, it moves toward sculpture. Burks' bits of stiffened fabric are objects as much as images. In the case of the full sheets, they resemble nothing so much as the Shroud of Turin, the sheet of cloth said to retain the impression of Christ's dead body.

The shredded paintings come across as relics in a more secular context—scraps of material culture awaiting excavation. The shredded fabric takes on complex shapes that look more like the shape of a body, not just something to cover it. Here, a woman's body converges with cast-off bits of domestic life and even invading pests. In the end, what seems to telegraph disintegration unveils a process that deeply integrates shapes and images. Angela Burks' paintings may touch upon decomposition, but in truth they compose themselves as you look.

Email arts@nashvillescene.com.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Nashville Galleries Examiner ...No terrible twos about it!

No terrible twos about it!
July 30, 3:22 Pm
Chuck Beard
Nashville Galleries Examiner

There won’t be any clowns in outrageous get-ups or fake candles that never seem to go out no matter what technique you try to make your dreams a reality, but during this week’s First Saturday Gallery Crawl, August 1st, from 6-9pm, Twist Art Gallery will informally be celebrating its 3rd birthday with art and entertainment galore! You don’t have to bring a gift, just yourself and possibly all of your friends, but there is a good chance that you won’t leave empty-handed.
It has already been three years since Twist began on August 6th, 2006. To celebrate the huge event, Twist is not opening one BUT two new shows: a Mail Art show in Twist #58 and paintings by Angela Burks! It certainly has been a rollercoaster ride to get where Twist is today from humble beginnings, but Twist doesn’t seem to see any end in sight just yet. In fact, Joe Nolan recently reported for Nashville Public Radio on the diverse ways of how Twist Art Gallery is proving particularly innovative in ways it is branching out through technology and attracting potential fans and buyers during a time where art business sales are down.
Alongside Angela’s show opening, Twist is also opening their Love Letters to the Post Office; a Mail Art show. Lately, the Arcade Post Office has had close-calls with possibly having to close from orders by the U.S. Postal Service. Heartfelt for the art of handwritten letters and postcards, Twist is trying to help the cause against a possible lost art form by having loving postcards that were sent in and postmarked before July 24th to be displayed and sold at the Gallery Crawl for $5 a piece to support future Twist exhibitions in the Arcade.

Also on tap for the festive event will be the availability of the pictured, limited-edition Twist commemorative posters created by local artist Laura Braisden in both full-color or black and white options. You’ll need to arrive early because there are only 100 of those posters made specifically for this birthday party. There will be other fun surprises and souvenirs in store and more!
Again, I was told there would be no clowns in outrageous get-ups. On the bright side, there will be stellar music by Nashville’s own sensation, Eastern Block, to accompany all of the visual art inside the Arcade starting at 7pm. Trust me; this will be one birthday party you won’t want to miss! Did I mention no clowns?!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

today is your birthday....

You're Not Helping and Twist's Birthday Bash
It's Your Birthday
Joe Nolan
Nashville Scene

Time flies when you are having fun, and Twist Gallery founders Caroline Carlisle and Beth Gilmore have been having a blast growing their presence in the Downtown Arcade and becoming one of the must-see spaces on the First Saturday Gallery Crawl. To celebrate their third birthday, Twist will feature two new shows in each of its Arcade spaces. 73 Arcade will feature paintings by Angela Burks whose latest paintings have introduced graphic elements into her realistic portraits. Twist's space at 58 Arcade will feature a mail art show called Love Letters to the Post Office that is dedicated to the Arcade's 106 year old post office which has recently been threatened with closing. Try to snag a copy of Laura Baisden's great birthday poster and get there early for cake!

Reception, also celebrating Twist's anniversary, 6-9 p.m., Aug. 1.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

IN THE tennessean...Twist, it's three years and counting

The Tennessean

July 26, 2009

For Twist, it's three years and counting

Twist Art Gallery is opening shows in both its Arcade spaces during next Saturday's Art Crawl: paintings by Angela Burks in 73 and Love Letters to the Post Office, a collection of postcards created and sent to the gallery in an effort to save the Arcade post office, in 58. Twist is also celebrating its third anniversary from 6 to 9 p.m. on Saturday.

"There will definitely be cake," says Twist co-owner Beth Gilmore, along with Eastern Block performing downstairs and a limited edition third anniversary poster.

Designed by Laura Baisden, the poster features the familiar pink and green color scheme and "elephant" from Twist's logo. Embracing the elephant is just one example of how Gilmore and partner in art Caroline Carlisle have gone with the flow when it comes to their gallery.

After being introduced by mutual friend Lain York from Zeitgeist Gallery, Gilmore and Carlisle decided on their Arcade space a week or so later, becoming the second of two galleries there. Their name came from lists each compiled.

"I was just thinking it needs to be an action word and it needs to be short," Gilmore says. She also liked the symmetry of "twist." Andee Rudloff and Stacey Irwin designed the logo. "It's twist ties," Gilmore explains. "It does look like an elephant and we have come to love that."

They also love shows that completely transform their spaces. Lauren Kussro's 2007 installation of paper flowers suspended from the ceiling remains one of Carlisle's favorites. Gilmore remembers the Whole Milk show, also from 2007, featuring four Minneapolis-based artists who also created a 30-foot-by-80-foot mural on a wall between the Viridian condo high-rise and Downtown Presbyterian Church.

"This has really been a nice creative break," Carlisle says. She says low rent in the Arcade allows them to focus on more than being a commercial venture. "It's nice when we sell things and we hope to sell things, but it's not the whole reason we exist."

Love Letters to the Post Office in Twist 58 and Angela Burks' paintings at Twist 73 remain on view through Aug. 29 in the Arcade. Gallery hours are 11 a.m.–5 p.m. Thursdays-Fridays and 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday. There is no admission fee. For information, call 888-535-5286 or go to http://www.twistartgallery.com">www.twistartgallery.com


Thursday, July 23, 2009

Nashville Public Radio: The Arts Economy – A Tale of Two Galleries (transcript)



The Arts Economy – A Tale of Two Galleries (transcript)
Thursday, July 23rd, 2009
By Joe Nolan

As the economic recession continues, the always-risky art business has proved particularly vulnerable. In January, art sales were down by half at the Christies and Sotheby’s auction houses in New York. Here in Nashville, WPLN’s Joe Nolan reports on the fortunes of two local galleries trying to attract the difficult art dollar.

Audio for this feature is available here.

(SOUND: Twist Gallery)

In downtown Nashville, the 106 year old Arcade building has become the epicenter of the city’s latest art scene. The first Saturday of every month, art fans head downtown for a Gallery Crawl, visiting the fourteen art spaces that call the Arcade and Nashville’s 5th Avenue of the Arts home.

Twist Gallery was one of the first venues to help transform the mostly-vacant Arcade, and was one of a handful of galleries that participated in the inaugural Art Crawl.

CARLISLE: “I’m Caroline Carlisle with Twist Art Gallery and we’re standing in the front room of Twist…”

The storefront gallery at Twist is displaying a show of drawings by two artists from Atlanta’s Beep Beep Gallery. Jason R. Butcher’s odd-ball narratives feature characters like a man whose his inner-child’s arms and legs are growing out of his chest. The exhibit spills into the gallery’s back room where an inventory of small retail items helps to pay the rent for Twist’s more challenging shows.

CARLISLE: “….handmade items, artist created things, t-shirts, vinyl record bowls, note cards, handmade bags and whatnot, all priced below $250. It could go from $3 on up, but we try to keep things affordable for people.”

By executing this one-two punch of challenging programming and savvy retail, Carlisle says Twist is effectively weathering a current dip in sales.

CARLISLE: “I would say we’ve seen a little bit of a slow down this year. The funny thing is we’ve seen more people in the gallery – less sales.”

Despite lean times, Twist has added an additional gallery on the Arcade’s upper level, adding to its space in the real world while it simultaneously increase their reach online.

CARLISLE: “We just recently added several features that we’re excited about. One is our shop button that takes you to our Etsy shop. I’ll click on that now.”

Etsy.com is an Internet bazaar where the gallery can sell their artist’s work online. Twist also employs a blog, social networking profiles and Twitter to carry their exhibits beyond the gallery’s walls extending the Twist brand well beyond the Arcade.

CARLISLE: “That’s just how you do it now. You can’t just have a website or just have a blog or you can’t just have a physical bricks and mortar space. We haven’t quite figured out what it is, but I think we’re trying to and I think that’s the next step.”

Another gallery contemplating its next step is only 6 blocks from the Arcade. Although the two galleries are within walking distance from one another, Ruby Green has a different, longer story to tell, one that can sometimes feel a world away from the Avenue of the Arts that Ruby Green also calls home.

CAMPBELL: “I am Chris Campbell and I’m the founding director of Ruby Green, and this is what we call the main gallery. We have divided our entire gallery space into 5 working artist studios. We’re just trying to survive and pay our bills right now.”

The studios recall the venue’s roots as a collection of ramshackle artist spaces that Campbell transformed into a non-profit art gallery in 1998. Ruby Green quickly became known as one of the largest, most engaging art gallery spaces in Nashville. The gallery’s art-for-art’s-sake programming offered challenging installations, video art and experimental live music.


The interest generated by bands like German Castro as well as the gallery’s well-attended exhibits paid off in 2005 when the Andy Warhol Foundation recognized the gallery’s achievements.

CAMPBELL: “It was one of the best things that’s ever happened to I think Nashville’s contemporary art scene personally, because we’re in the books. We’re in the history.”

The Foundation provided Ruby Green with $135,000 dollars, allowing the gallery to hire some of its loyal volunteers.

CAMPBELL: “So for a few years we had paid employees and we were able to reach out and do a lot more and serve a lot more artists. But like all non-profits you still always have to cover all of your operating costs. It’s very rare to get money that’s going to go just for rent and electricity.”

Today at Ruby Green, the main gallery has come full circle. The newly-erected walls fill the formerly spacious room, and the artist studios are linked by a common hallway. Although this latest effort is creating income for the space, the gallery is facing greater challenges.

Campbell worries that possible downtown development plans for green spaces and new Convention Center parking may mean the end of the building that is the gallery’s ten-year old home, forcing Ruby Green to find a new venue even further removed from 5th Avenue and a Gallery Crawl that they already feel a world away from.

CAMPBELL: “I was told that 5th Avenue of the arts is a big elephant and that they can only eat a bite at a time and they’re starting up at TPAC so, you know, we’re at the end of the elephant. The other end (laughs).”

As of the airing of this report, the doors were locked at Ruby Green. The gallery has put in a 30 days notice with their landlord and will be leaving their space to search for a new home in the coming weeks.

For Nashville public radio, I’m Joe Nolan.