Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Art Salon Making Waves in Downtown Elgin

100+ artists, $3,000 in prizes, and the TARDIS from Dr. Who?

A vacant industrial building in downtown Elgin will be transformed into a gallery of art and spectacle at The Next Wave Art Salon on September 11, from 6 to 10PM.

More than 100 artists from all over the Chicago area have registered to participate in this unique showcase of art in the suburbs. All types of art will be represented – from fine art, to digital, to performance and, literally, everything in between. Even “hair art” and “aerial art” will be represented, and certainly new categories of art will be created throughout the weekend.

Billed as a “radically inclusive” event, the only guideline artists are asked to follow is that their submissions are based on the theme of “working.” Whether an artist is a professional who has shown his work at too many shows to remember, a young, burgeoning artist just out of college, or someone who works a 9 to 5 and has never shown her work to anyone but her cat – all are welcome and encouraged to share their work with each other and the community at this event.

The “salon” concept is inspired by the salons of the 17th century that brought together visual artists, writers, performers, philosophers, political thinkers and creators from all walks of life to an environment free of censorship for the purpose of sharing ideas and creating new relationships.

Three $1000 prizes will be awarded to the artists who best exhibit the theme of “working” in a style that is their own.

The Next Wave Art Salon is hosted by the Downtown Neighborhood Association of Elgin (DNA), a volunteer-driven organization that works to revitalize downtown Elgin. This is one of many arts events that, in recent years, are contributing to the renaissance that downtown Elgin is experiencing.

Events such as the Next Wave also help to lay the foundation for arts-related economic development projects, such as “Elgin ArtSpace” which would bring 55 affordable live/work units for artists and their families to downtown Elgin, as well as market-rate space for arts related businesses. This project is currently under consideration for approval by the Illinois Housing Development Authority.

In addition to the 100-plus artists participating in the event, the DNA has partnered with a handful of other organizations and businesses to make the event possible. One such partner is Acme Design Co., an Elgin-based product design company that makes movie props, product replicas and other types of art for the purpose of “work.” Acme is donating a number of pieces to the event, but the one that is drawing the most buzz is the replica TARDIS from Dr. Who that Acme designed and built for a collector.

Funding for the Next Wave Art Salon is provided by the Florence B. and Cornelia A. Palmer Foundation, a local private foundation that supports arts organizations and events, with in-kind support from the City of Elgin, Fabric Images and the Haight Family.

The Next Wave Art Salon will be held at 166 Symphony Way in downtown Elgin, just one block east of The Centre of Elgin and just north of the Elgin Police Department. The event is free and open to the public on Saturday, September 11, 6-10PM. Free parking is available in the public parking garage across from the Centre.

More information is available at thenextwave.me or by calling (847) 488-1456.

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