NORWALK, CT — With a constant drumbeat of negative headlines, social media posts, and bad news swirling around our heads, Susan Hardesty’s new exhibit at The Norwalk Art Space offers an escape from our current reality. As a Korry Fellow with The Norwalk Art Space, Hardesty curated “Alternative Realities,” which features the works of 15 regional artists.
The debut of “Alternative Realities” invites the audience to take a step away from their current reality and dive into a village of small, clay dwellings; small, intimate collages; abstract paintings; floating swatches of painted fabric; and more. The exhibit will be unveiled at a reception on Thursday, February 16 at 6 p.m. at The Norwalk Art Space. Fifteen artists are participating in the exhibit—Alex Churchill, Naomi Clark, Jessica Dowling, Kevin Ford, Brian Kaspr, Sophia Konstantin, Sarah LeMieux, Denise Minnerly, Aisha Nailah, Sain’t Phifer, Lyman Richardson, Carlos RM, Remy Sosa, Rebecca Stern, and Lydia Viscardi.
“Connecting such a diverse group of artists into a cohesive show was challenging until I realized all art is an alternative reality,” writes Hardesty. “The 15 artists selected have imagined, invented, and created their reality, an alternative reality to ours.”
The exhibit features something for everyone, from Aisha Nailah’s colorful Afrocentric iconography on canvases to Lyman Richardson’s World City t-shirts, from Denise Minnnerly’s clay dwellings to Jessica Dowling’s vintage collages. Hardesty wrote that the “fifteen artists, fifteen visions” are “conjoined in their creation of alternative realities.”
The opening reception will be held on Thursday, February 16 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. It will feature a performance at 7 p.m. by artist and contemporary composer Sarah LeMieux, whose work is also a part of the exhibit. LeMieux’s “We Are Connected” portion of the exhibit aims to be “a musical and visual recontextualization of Norwalk as a work of art we are all creating together.”
In addition to the opening reception, the “Alternative Realities” exhibit will feature multiple events during its time at the Norwalk Art Space. On Sunday, March 12 at 1 p.m., artist Denise Minnerly will lead a Village Project community workshop for participants to create their own version of “home” through clay. On Sunday, March 19 at 3 p.m., Hardesty will moderate an “Artist Talk” featuring most of the participating artists in the “Alternative Realities” exhibit.
There will also be a Teen Night at The Art Space on Friday, February 24 at 6 p.m. featuring the Norwalk High School Music Honor Society. On Saturday April 1, starting at 10 a.m., Korry Fellow Sarah King will host a second round of portfolio reviews for high school students looking to enroll in art school in the fall.
The Norwalk Art Space’s previous exhibit “Layers Revealed” will have its debut at the SoNo Collection on Thursday, March 9 at 5 p.m. Korry Fellow Jerri Graham and invited artists Melissa Newman and Tim Holmstrom will be on hand to discuss their work.