Sunday, July 31, 2011

Join us for the exhibition of the Venus Project

Dear friends and colleagues,

As part of my year at the 40th AIR residency, I had the fortune to work in 'The Venus Project,' together with artist Maria Anazasi, with a wonderful community of women from the MATER program.

For ten weeks we worked hard to complete individualized felt versions of the famous votive prehistoric sculpture The Venus of Wilendorf. The results are beautiful and inspiring, and the sculptures will be on display at the 40th AIR gallery (4007 Chestnut street, 19104) starting August 8th through August 24th. The gallery will be open between those days by appointment at or

Please, join us on Monday, August 8th, 6-8pm, for the opening reception of this exhibition, where you'll have a chance to meet the artists. Reception will include a live samba drumming performance.

I hope you can make it!


Monday, July 4, 2011

Resident Erik Ruin's Staring at the Cracks opens Thursday July 7!

 Staring at the Cracks
40th Street Artist-in-Residence Erik Ruin
(with Brett Story & Dan Blacksberg)
July 7-24 
Local artist combines prints, projections and sound  
to tell stories of solitary confinement in temporary storefront gallery

CONTACT- Erik Ruin- 267.262.0208pictured: Staring at the Cracks poster

Staring at the Cracks
Installation by Erik Ruin (with Brett Story and Dan Blacksberg)  
Opening Reception:
Thursday July 7 at 7pm  
Closing Reception:
Saturday July 23 at 3pm  
at: 4212 Chestnut St., 1st floor, Philadelphia 

Temporarily inhabiting an unoccupied suite of offices near Penn's campus, artist Erik Ruin is constructing a unique environment to share the emotions and experiences of formerly incarcerated people.  Visitors are greeted in the entrance hall by a wall-paper-like pattern of silkscreened scenes depicting the isolation and repetition of daily life in the hole. Other rooms are populated by shadow-puppet and video projections by Ruin and award-winning Toronto filmmaker Brett Story.  Speakers littered throughout the space play snippets of audio interviews with men and women describing their experiences in solitary confinement, interwoven with a unique and haunting bed of sound composed by innovative klezmer and jazz trombonist Dan Blacksberg.

At the opening reception Thursday July 7th, from 7-9 PM, Blacksberg will perform a live improvisational accompaniment to this soundscape, wandering throughout the space and performing with and against the audio samples.

Additionally on this night, Hakim Ali and William Goldsby, both of Philadelphia prison-activist group Reconstruction and both interviewees for this project, will speak about their experiences and the work they have been doing since their release.

On Saturday July 23rd,  West Philadelphia fixture Ruin will be bidding Philly farewell with an all-day studio sale, live music, and closing reception. 3-11pm

Other viewings by appointment- contact or
to schedule.

LOCATION- 4212 Chestnut Street (below Scribe Video Center), West Philly  


Erik Ruin is a Philly-based printmaker, shadow-puppeteer, occasional editor of various publications (including the anthology Realizing the Impossible: Art Against Authority with Josh MacPhee, AK Press, 2007) and a founding member of the Justseeds Artists' Cooperative. He is currently a 40th Street Artist-in-Residence.  
Brett Story is a Montreal based filmmaker with roots in radio, print, experimental super8 film, live performance projections and documentary.

Dan Blacksberg is a trombonist who is working to expand the range of the trombone in jazz and improvised music. He is also one of the premiere trombonists in the world of Klezmer.