ArtFul Living: St. Louis Area Fine Arts, Crafts & Performing Arts

Michelle “Mike” Ochonicky, Arts Editor

Three—no, FOUR Cheers for the ARTS in St. Louis!

Between connecting flights on a few trips, I’ve had some time to spend in Amsterdam Schiphol International Airport, in The Netherlands. Most travelers consider time spent in an airport as b-o-r-i-n-g. Not so at Schiphol. In fact, art-lovers may feel cheated if they don’t have layover-time in that airport. The Rijksmuseum of Amsterdam has a mini-satellite facility right there in the terminal, with a changing exhibition of works from the museum’s collection, plus a top-notch museum shop. Definitely a delightful place to spend time!

Airports offer an ideal venue to give passers-through a taste of a city’s arts culture. At Lambert St. Louis International Airport, through November 30, the International Photography Hall of Fame and Museum (which is located in Grand Center) hosts “A Heritage of Cameras.” The exhibition of vintage cameras is located at the Meeting Place, at the exit of Concourse C inside Terminal 1. Six vitrines present an incredible range of cameras from IPHF’s vast collection. According to IPHF’s Executive Director John Nagel, “Photographs surround our daily lives by the thousands. We are literally bombarded with images throughout our lives. Photographs are taken for granted as tools of communication, and no words are required. Photography touches everyone, from all walks of life….But no matter the image, all photographs derive from a camera… The camera is the essential tool of photography.”

Nagel notes, “Because Lambert St. Louis International Airport hosts 12 million travelers each year, this special exhibition opportunity is an important way that the International Photography Hall of Fame and Museum can extend our reach outside of our Museum’s facility. A Heritage of Cameras…will allow St. Louisans and travelers from around the world the opportunity to learn more about the importance of photography in their daily lives.”

Craft Alliance Center of Art + Design continues its 50th anniversary celebration with the recent announcement of expanding education and community programs. Generous sponsorship from the Kranzberg Arts Foundation is providing the opportunity for Craft Alliance to create new programming at its Education Center (in Grand Center) to make the studios more accessible through Sunday Crafternoons, Free Family Days and other collaborative endeavors to utilize Craft Alliance’s extensive studios. The Artist-in-Residence program continues to engage the public in close communication with working artists.

Senior Director of Education Luanne Rimel said, “We are especially excited about Sunday Crafternoons… where we host low-cost art making events that allow people to try out a new skill in our studios and complete a project in just a few hours.”

Also beginning in September, the gallery in the Kranzberg Arts Center will become an arts incubator, operated by the Kranzberg Arts Foundation, while Craft Alliance will present all of its exhibitions in the Delmar Loop location’s gallery. Said Craft Alliance’s Executive Director Boo McLoughlin, “Directing our focus in the Kranzberg Arts Center on our education programs will strengthen our capacity to education a diverse urban audience in craft techniques. Craft Alliance is committed to bringing the St. Louis community exceptional opportunities to view and create contemporary craft.” Find out more at www.craftalliance.org.

Applause for Third Degree Glass Factory and the St. Louis Lampworker’s Society: On September 20, the $2 admission fee to the Glass Galore show/sale benefits Our Little Haven, which provides residential care for abused, neglected, drug exposed and special needs children from birth through age five. Several years ago, I painted some fanciful, castle-themed murals in Our Little Haven. While I was working, one of the very young residents peeked in to watch me. “That horse has wings!” he observed. “Yes,” I replied. “It’s a Pegasus. Can you say that word?” We practiced saying it a few times. Just then, another little guy walked in and said, “Hey, that horse has wings!” The first boy explained, “That’s a Pegasus.” And then he proudly added, “Everybody knows that.” I couldn’t help but smile! So help Our Little Haven, and find some great glass, too, from 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. at 5200 Delmar. More details at www.stlglass.com or 314-367-4527.

At the end of the month, Greater St. Louis Hispanic Festival relocates to the Soulard Market Park, located near the corner of Lafayette Street and South 9th in Soulard. This celebration of culture opens on Friday, September 26 (10 a.m.-10 p.m.) and continues through Sunday, September 28 (closes at 9 p.m.). Enjoy some great authentic food, music, dancing, and check out the arts. Learn more at www.hispanicfestivalstl.com.