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Exhibit shows different side of art

Kim DeFries has seen enough dandelions. She’s seen enough cows and wildflowers and sunsets, too. What DeFries hasn’t seen enough of is substance.She has seen plenty of paintings of pastures, desert landscapes and Mount Sopris in the valley’s galleries, but none of the wars in Iraq or Rwanda, or, most importantly, the state of peace in the world. So DeFries, a sculptor, started to look for a place to gather artists who had something to say about peace. She went to Jolie Ramo, director of the Carbondale Council on Arts and Humanities, and found an eager partner in her quest to present an art show that addressed peace.In general, Ramo said, people think that art should be beautiful, filled with fall colors and babbling brooks. “But art is not always beautiful,” she said, “sometimes it is about truth.”We love all the exhibits we’ve done in the past,” Ramo said of the CCAH, “but we thought art can serve the function to poke and provoke as well.” This weekend “Artists for Peace” in Carbondale will do just that. The show is an amalgam of paintings, sculptures, poetry, music and lectures that all speak to the idea of peace in the world. “Artists for Peace” is not supposed to be a political show, but the United States is at war, and the political party that started the war is up for re-election, which DeFries said “really sparked this thing.”Some pieces in the show are in-your-face, and thought-provoking, such as DeFries’ “Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of … ?”DeFries’ ceramic sculpture shows the Statue of Liberty on her knees, hands tied behind her, back arched, head tilted upward – with a gasoline nozzle shoved in her mouth. Some pieces, though, speak to the spirituality of peace, with abstract shapes and bright colors that look to be formed by a prism. The “Artists for Peace” show is unique not only in subject, but also in its scope. The show features musicians, poets and lecturers in addition to visual artists.Dr. Joel Brence will give the lecture “The Artistic Protest: Goya and the Politics of Empire,” which compares Spain’s empire-building during Francisco Goya’s life to the modern United States.Goya depicted the Spanish empire’s downfall before it happened, almost prophetically, Brence said.”Artists are today’s prophets,” Brence wrote in a press release. “With their ‘X-ray vision’ they see beneath the surface of events to the archetypal patterns that replicate themselves through the course of history. Since these archetypes are inherently timeless, it is not surprising to find the images of Goya’s artistic pallet coming back to haunt and delight us – only the names and faces have been changed to suit the times.”When and WhereWhat: Artists for PeaceWhere: The CCAH Art Annex, 580 La Fontana Plaza in CarbondaleWhen: Opening reception 6-9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 15. Music by Matt Johnson and Boneyard, Jessa Young and Steve Jueneman, and Soul Feel; poetry by Karen Chamberlain, Bruce Berger, Wendy Anderson, and Ruth Powers from 7-10 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 16. Lecture by Thomas Keatin 7:30-9:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 19. “The Artistic Protest: Goya and the Politics of Empire” lecture from 7:30-9:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 21. Music by Dan Sheridan, Frank Martin, Chris Bank, Shawn O’Neil, and Steve Koch, with performance art by Barry Smith from 7-10 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 23. Information: 963-1680


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