Green Hill Center for NC Art has been awarded $20,000 from Lincoln Financial Group. This grant will support Green Hill Center’s Read, Yellow and Blue early childhood program in school year 2013-2014.
Read, Yellow and Blue is a program of Green Hill Center for under-served pre-school age children which offers age-appropriate enriched cultural arts curriculum that supports school readiness. Through the program, children are invited to experience The Gallery at Green Hill Center where they gain observation and interpretive skills. “The kids are asked to decipher and decode symbols, promoting the same skills used in reading and writing. We live in a world filled with visual symbols and this program enhances visual thinking strategies. The heart and soul of what we do is self-initiated art making which is very hard to achieve in other settings and is essential in the development of critical thinkers,” explained Jaymie Meyer, Director Youth Programs and Outreach at Green Hill Center for NC Art.
When touring Green Hill Center through the Read, Yellow and Blue program, groups explore and participate in activities in The Gallery, then move into ArtQuest, the Center’s award-winning education program for children and families. Children freely express themselves with art mediums such as clay, paint and collage. They are able to create as well as collaborate with other children and adults. After a child completes their piece of work, a facilitator records the child’s dictation about their artwork so they can take it home to “read” to their parents and caregivers. Meyers said, “In ArtQuest children have the opportunity to engage in an activity that they have complete control over. We help them articulate the thought process behind their work by using the phrase “Tell me about that”. The magic of it is in the telling part - it gives you access to what is happening inside of their heads.”
Through Lincoln Financial Group support, Green Hill Center is able to strengthen the Read, Yellow and Blue program. Currently the program serves Guilford Child Development’s Head Start and Learning Together programs. With this support, Read, Yellow and Blue will extend its services to United Way of Greater Greensboro’s Thriving at Three initiative to directly and positively impact more pre-K children in Guilford County. “Thriving at Three operates under the premise that children who are healthy– physically and emotionally–by age three are more likely to be successful in school and in life,” says Traci McLemore, manager of community impact initiatives at United Way of Greater Greensboro. “Our programming is vital to strengthening our community because it is focused on supporting parents in their role as their child’s first and most important teacher.”
Green Hill Center focuses on early childhood because it is the foundation for in-school success based on AchieveGuilford’s research. During school year 2011-2012, Green Hill Center served 399 children from Guilford Child Development’s Head Start through Read, Yellow and Blue. In school year 2012-2013, this number grew to 1354 children from Guilford Child Development Head Start and Learning Together. This year, Green Hill Center will provide the opportunity to visit ArtQuest with a special “Family Pass” to eliminate barriers that may exist for families. Laura Way, Executive Director at Green Hill Center said, “The way we partner with organizations allows us to be more effective because we are combining our strengths and theirs; not reinventing the wheel. Head Start, Learning Together and Thriving at Three are programs that are already established; what Green Hill Center is doing is using our resource of arts education to add another layer to their efficacy in terms of preparing young children for success before they enter Kindergarten.”
NC Art Outreach Project NYC-based panel, Peter Plagens, Miles Manning and Lilly Wei discuss their views on contemporary art and the position of artists who are working on the periphery of the mainstream on April 22 at Green Hill Center for NC Art. Photo courtesy of Joe Wheby.
Green Hill Center for NC Art hosted its first biennial NC Art Outreach Project, a program that was made available through a grant by the Tannenbaum-Sternberger Foundation. The NC Art Outreach Project was designed to draw attention and facilitate a two-way dialogue between national artists, critics and gallery owners and North Carolina artists. The project was a two phase program which consisted of (1) February 16, 2013 Pecha Kucha presentations juried by Edie Carpenter, Director of Curatorial and Artists Programs, Dave Delcambre, arts writer and founder of NC Artblog, and Tom Patterson, arts writer and independent curator; and (2) April 22-23, 2013 New York City-based panel, including Miles Manning, Director of the Elizabeth Harris Gallery in New York, Lilly Wei, New York-based independent curator and contributing editor for ARTnews, and Peter Plagens, American painter, art critic and novelist.
The program began on April 22 with the panelists in a private session with the participating artists in Green Hill Center’s current exhibition, Independents, Brett Baker, Mark Brown, Ashlynn Browning, Philip Lopez and Bonnie Melton. The group engaged in an in-depth dialogue about their work, studio practices, entrepreneurship, and career trajectory.
On the evening of April 22 from 5:30-6:30 p.m., Green Hill Center hosted a discussion, where the Manning, Plagens and Wei had an informal dialogue on their views on contemporary art and the position of artists who are working on the periphery of the mainstream. Plagens and Manning discussed the importance of regionalism and global pluralism. Manning commented, “Provincialism or regionalism is a state of mind. You are only limited by the limits you put on yourself. Timing is everything.” Coming from another perspective, Wei commented that in the past, artists were discovered by a curator. She further explained that today we are seeing a shift in that collectors are finding artists and are typically doing so by going to art fairs, such as Art Basel and Venice Biennale; art festivals are an important way for artists to be seen today. A private dinner followed at the home of Walker and Dabney Sanders.
Twenty artists presented their work to the NYC-based panel in a Pecha Kucha format on April 23rd. Presenting abstract artist, Kiki Farish, explained, “For me personally, it was a forced opportunity to speak concisely about my work in an organized presentation. It is difficult to afford the time to make concrete the ephemeral ideas behind my work. It was clear that it took a lot of bravery for me and others to present; the project took many of us out of our comfort zone.” Following the presentations attendees were afforded the opportunity to have an open dialogue with the artists and panelists. Plagens commented on his visit, “I always get something out of visits to someplace outside the major art capitals where I see the work of artists that might not otherwise come to my attention, and hear what’s on artists’ minds….I think Green Hill Center would have to do this kind of program at least another two times to find out how beneficial it was to the people it’s supposed to benefit; the artists and art community of North Carolina.”
Green Hill Center makes it a priority to support artists at all stages of their careers, including emerging artists who are embarking on professional art career goals as well as artists in the middle stage of their careers who received recognition equal to the quality of their work. “A structured Art Outreach Project should be an effective way for North Carolinian artists to be seen by outside art professionals in a focused way; we viewed around 350 works by 25 artists over the course of two days,” Wei explained, “something that without the program would not have occurred—nor, I imagine, would the artists have been able to share their work with so many of their peers. Green Hill Center’s initiative should prove stimulating and a great resource for the region’s artists, and Executive Director Laura Way, Curator Edie Carpenter and their team should be congratulated on the launch of their new project.” Following the success of the 2013 NC Art Outreach Project, Green Hill Center announced that this will be a biennial project. The 2015 NC Art Outreach Project will be tied to a specific style or genre and Green Hill Center will provide an open call for artists a year in advance.
In addition to the NC Art Outreach Project, Green Hill Center has adopted a new initiative, the Open NC Art Review, which will continue to offer North Carolina artist’s fruitful opportunities for exposure and personalized contact with art professionals. The Open NC Art Review will be an open platform for sharing opinions in a collegial atmosphere and will extend the visibility of North Carolina artists beyond its borders. The initiative will nurture artistic growth and help artists develop strategies that allow for sustainability. The first Open NC Art Review will be held on March 8, 2014 from 2-4pm. The review will be a first-come-first-serve basis, and the reviewing panel will include Edie Carpenter and other North Carolina arts professionals.
The panel discussion (April 22) and Pecha Kucha presentations (April 23) were free and open to the public.
The full list of Pecha Kucha participating artists included:
Green Hill Center for NC Art is located at 200 North Davie Street, in the Greensboro Cultural Center. Green Hill Center is the only non-collecting institution dedicated to presenting, promoting, and advocating contemporary visual art and artists of North Carolina. Green Hill Center receives major support from the United Arts Council of Greater Greensboro and the N.C. Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources.
If not ask a member of the ArtQuest Guild (but they won’t tell you because it’s a secret!) At each monthly meeting the Guild members visit the gallery. Sometimes we witness new work being delivered or in preparation for installation. We may stop to talk to the curator for a behind the scenes tour or discuss the art in the exhibition. Now after a year of being together, the Guild members guide US in a gallery discussion. The youngest group moves with assurance from piece to piece talking out loud about the shapes and colors with little hands waving around in excitement. They are quick to identify what they see and share interesting ideas about how the work came to be and what it all means. Their perspectives are refreshing and bold. The older Guild members, although more reserved, freely examine the work and astound us with their perceptions. After the gallery visit we head to the studio to create. Last month after seeing the shadow work of Heather Lewis and the fiber work of Andrea Donnelly, the Guild members created the large shadow fiber works (shown above). They are making connections through visual art in accessible and meaningful ways.
If you are interested in having your child join the Guild it is easy! The ArtQuest Guild it is a program of Green Hill Center and is for children ages five and up. The cost is $35 per child for the Guild, you must be a current Household member and there is open enrollment. Guild members gain a deeper connection and understanding of North Carolina art and art processes. Monthly workshops accommodate children of all level and experience.