Posts Tagged ‘AxD Gallery


Celebrating AxD Gallery: January 2007 to September 2012

Following six years of diverse and exhilarating art exhibits and events, I’ve closed AXD Gallery to focus on our primary creative passion: ARCHITECTURE. Creativity will remain at the core of AxD: expressed in the special places we continue to create in which people work, dwell and relax.

As the “AxD Gallery years” come to a close, I’d like to take this post to celebrate the many artists and organizations we’ve hosted and learned from.

Montage of a few of the works of art exhibited at AxD Gallery

From January 2007 to September 2012, AxD Gallery hosted an extensive program of exhibitions and events. Exhibitions curated or hosted by AxD included works by painters, photographers, printmakers, sculptors, woodworkers, graphic designers, illustrators, textile artists and architects. Events included musical and theatrical performances, educational workshops and classes, book readings, fashion shows, auditions, readings, film screenings and plenty of social networking events and parties. While many of these activities are called out in earlier posts on this site, in retrospect it is apparent that many are missing. Hopefully the following list of AxD participants is somewhat closer to offering a complete record of the AxD Gallery years.

Visual Artists *
Madeline Adams, Marjorie Tether Arendt, Val Bertoia, Isaac Bidwell, Michael Biello, Joe Bowman, Gregory Brellochs, Michael Broderick, Karen Brown, Jude Buffum, Gabriel Turner Byrne, David Carrow, Anne Caramanico, John Cartwright, Matt Cavanaugh, Ray Chase, Dave Christman, John Clark, Butch Cordora, Annette Cords, Pia DiGirolamo, Susan DiPronio, Austin Dodson, Eamon Dougherty, JD Dragan, Sheldon Drake, Steven Dressler, Amber Dubois, Alex Eckman-Lawn, RA Friedman, Mark Fields, JP Flexner, Joseph Game, Laureen Griffin, Yis Goodwin, James Groody, Tim Gough, Emma Dodge Hanson, Peter Hayes, Maryann Held, Shawn Hileman, Randolph Husava, Paul Davis Jones, Edward Kelley, Susanne Scherette King, Barbara Klein, Doron Langberg, John Langdon, Doug LaRocca, Robb Leef, Allen Linder, David Lunt, Mike Manley, Vivienne Maricevic, Vincent McLoughlin, Greg Minah, Carey Netherton, Maria Nevelson, Bobby O’Herlihy, Bart O’Reilly, Matthew Ostroff, Carrie Patterson, Ashley Payne, Anthony Pedro, Dolores Poacelli, Georg Purvis III, Peter G. Ray, Chris Resko, Deborah Sawyer, Nancy Schall, Jaclyn Sinquett, Michael Smith, Nancy Sophy, Mike Stack, James Stella, Christine Stoughton, Daniel Stuelpnagel, Kimberlee Traub, Marcia Treiger, Tom Whalen, Douglas Witmer, Larry Wood, and last, but actually our first artist, Chuck van Zyl.
* [Artists whose work was shown as part of a solo or two-person exhibition at AxD are shown in boldface.]

Musicial Performers
The Absinthe Drinkers (Chris McDonough, Robert McNaull, John Monge and Thomas Maxim Guerin), Dan Blacksberg, Ian Boddy, Charles Cohen, Matt Davis, Tony Enos, ensemble39 (Alexandra von der Embse, Stanislav Chernyshev, Rebecca Anderson, Zoe Martin-Doike, Jessica T. Chang, Ayane Kozasa, Gabriel Cabezas and Rex Surany), Aiden James, Rick Larracone, Elliot Levin, Evan Lipson, Keith Macksoud, Toshi Makihara, Carla Mariani, Jim Meneses, Matthew Moon, The Oubliette Ensemble (Melissa Santangelo, Jim Kydonieus, Cynthia James, Jessica Marcus and Syd Torchio), Steve & Jeanette Perlsweig, Mike Pride, Quiet Quartet (Michael Davidson, Shaw Pong Liu, Matt Plummer and Felicity Wililams), Robert Rich, Sue Russell, Nina Storey, Chris Troiani, Jack Wright, and Chuck van Zyl.

Actors & Theatre Companies
And Theatre, Bobbi Block and Tongue & Groove, Dark Star Theatre, Idiopathic Ridiculopathy Consortium, Luna Theatre, Kevin Murphy and Room6 Theatre Co., Overlap Theatre, Philly Improv Theatre (PHIT), Plug-n-Play, The “Poe-sers”, Pub Theater, Quinn D. Eli, Sharon Geller and The Waitstaff Sketch Comedy Troupe.

Launch Events
Fashion Launch: by Ishmael Abrokwa
Fashion Launch: by AmareSinh
Film DVD Signing: “Straight and Butch” by Butch Cordoba
Fashion Launch: by Shavonne DeAnn
Film DVD Release: “The Owls” by Cheryl Dunye
Music Album Release: “Did It Rite” by Tony Enos”
Film Premiere: “Greenhouse” written and directed by AG McCants
Novel Release: Spore by Thom Nickels
Fashion Launch: “See It Be It’ by Lashon Pringle
Music Album Release: “So Many Ways from Me to You” by Nina Storey and Matthew Moon

Philadelphia Festivals (with AxD participation)
Center City “Gallery Night”
Cinémathèque International of Philadelphia film screenings
Design Philadelphia
GreenFest Philly
Philadelphia QFest Film Festival
Philly Fringe Festival
Paint it Right – an art auction and fundraising eventbenefittingThe RIGHT Foundation

Competitions and Student Exhibitions
The AIGA (American Institute of Graphic Arts) Philadelphia Design Awards
Philadelphia University – 3rd year architecture students window display competition
Temple University, Tyler School of Art – Fiber artist thesis projects
Drexel University, School of Architecture – Student furniture projects

Gallery Awards
2010 PGN ‘Pink Penny Award’ for “Gay-Friendly Art Gallery”
2008 PGN ‘Pink Penny Award’ for “Best Place to Appreciate Fringe Art”
2007 Readers’ Choice Award from Philadelphia Citypaper for ‘Best Art Gallery’

 Other Events
There were also many “one-of-a-kind” events: show castings, movie shoots, community meetings, networking socials, New Year’s eve parties, office parties, alumni association reunions and professional association meetings. Two particularly memorable occasions were hosting receptions for the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) and Alumni Association of the Courtauld Institute of Art.

 Thank You
First let me thank Ryan McMenamin, who served as the gallery/events coordinator for all of the gallery years! In addition to the tireless efforts in mounting/de-mounting shows and events, cataloging work, meeting press deadlines and attending to countless details, he significantly broadened the range of exhibitions and events held at AxD. I couldn’t have done it without him. Secondly, thanks go to Larry Willoughby – host and drink-master extraordinaire –  who made so many openings and events all that much more fun! Thanks also to AxD staff members Justin Tocci and Christopher Stromberg who were more than willing to roll up their sleeves to hang and organize exhibitions and events. Finally, I would be remiss if I didn’t express heartfelt thanks to all of the wonderful and devoted visual and performing artists I’ve met in the process who have contributed to the vibrant artistic melting pot at AxD Gallery.

Ed Barnhart, founder/principal of AxD


“Nothing to Fear” Facade

Recently we were commissioned to do a design-build facade installation for Peter G.-Ray’s 2009 ‘Nothing to Fear’ painting exhibition at the Bridge Gallery on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Two years earlier we debuted his work in the U.S. at AxD Gallery with a solo show entitled ‘CUT’. For that exhibition we built rolled aluminum panels on the exterior of our gallery, creating the appearance of their being cut and peeled away.


Views of finished window at Bridge Gallery, and the painting "Cut" by Peter G.-Ray, displaying similarly hand-rolled aluminum panels.

The designs for both gallery fronts flowed as fairly direct extensions of the artist’s interests in concealing, cutting, peeling and revealing. In his work, openings, whether rendered physically in cut materials or graphically with painted surfaces, are invitations for engagement. Simply put, Peter’s work invites curiosity. As art critic Ken Moffett has noted: “G.-Ray has combined the hallucinatory surrealism of Dali with the vigor and freedom of Jackson Pollock, metamorphosing these into something startlingly new. He hungers to unite extremes: Precision and free improvisation, the intensely graphic and beautifully painted, exquisite refinement of detail and pictorial force.” All in all, there is plenty in Peter G.-Ray’s work to sustain interest and wonder.

Our design-build exercises to date have all been conducted as “charrettes” of a week or less. In the case of the Bridge Gallery façade installation we had the added constraint of performing all of the work in a single day, including round trip transportation from Philadelphia, with materials and equipment fitting inside a mid-sized sedan.

Fortunately working conditions were absolutely perfect. The weather was very mild for late February. The trickiest part of the project was securing our work to the Bridge Gallery without permanently altering the existing marble façade. We accomplished this by working the head and a jamb of our frame into existing security gate hardware and bolting the base into the concrete sidewalk. Interest in our installation piece increased dramatically as the first aluminum panels were screwed onto the frame. (See “before” and installation photos below.)


Neighboring shop owners, tourists and random passersby stopped to ask us what was going on. We handed out quite a few postcards for Nothing to Fear during that Spring-like afternoon. As we finished up at dusk, Peter G.-Ray was quite pleased with results … the debut for both of us in NYC. Two days later, it snowed at the March 1st opening reception!


Our Second Art Staging at the Economy League

The Economy League's office at Broad & Locust streets

The Economy League's office at Broad & Locust streets

Earlier this month we made our second installation of artwork at the offices of the Economy League of Greater Philadelphia as part of an on-going art staging program for them. The Economy League is a non-profit think tank offering expert analysis of the regions resources and economic policies. Our initial art staging at the Economy League was in August. We would like to thank Christopher Scoville at the Economy League for coordinating both stagings.

Ryan McMenamin

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