I was privileged to have the opportunity to see the phenomenal “Kimono as Art” exhibit at the Canton Museum of Art last night in a special showing for local artists. Thanks so much to Arts in Stark for arranging the special showing and reception! I found myself completely speechless as I viewed this amazing exhibit, and even found myself with tears in my eyes at the virtuosity. I have seen exhibits at large museums in New York, Washington, Houston, Cleveland, Atlanta, etc., but I have NEVER seen something like this. Being totally void of articulation to adequately describe the experience, I am going to reprint a blog from friend Todd Walburn, co-owner of Second April Galerie, who was able to put it into words. Thanks Todd!
OK….I’ll admit it. I was one of the ones thinking that the Kimono as Art exhibit was going to be one of those over-hyped art events that come and go without making much of an impact on the community in the long run. I can’t help it if I’m cynical. It’s just the way I am.
Even tonight, as I got ready to go to see the exhibit, I was excited but wasn’t sure exactly what I might take away from the experience in the long run. I never studied Japanese art or culture and know very little about fiber art so I felt like I might feel a bit like a fish out of water.
Then I saw it.
Kimono As Art is not simply about art. It is so much more than the pieces you see before you as you walk through the galleries of The Canton Museum of Art and marvel at the beauty of these miraculous works. Kimono As Art is what Art is. It is about the talent, courage, tenacity and craft of the artist. It is a life-affirming glance at one person’s vision and his ability to bring that vision to life.
This simply is something everyone should see. It reminds you of why artists do what they do. It illuminates the power of human beings to accomplish what others say would be impossible. It is beautiful far beyond my power to explain and it makes you feel fortunate to be living in a community that can offer such an experience.
I have always believed that great art has the ability to change the way we see the world and our place in it. This is really great art. I feel refreshed and blessed beyond my wildest imaginings. Yes, even a cynic like me.