The Downtown Ithaca Alliance is excited to celebrate the opening of its sixteenth annual Art in the Heart public art exhibit with a reception and tour on Friday, July 10 from 5:30-7:00 PM in Press Bay Alley (118 West Green Street.) Free and open to the public, this event will be a part of First Friday Gallery Night, a monthly celebration of the visual arts in and around downtown Ithaca.
The reception, beginning at 5:30 PM, will feature free locally baked cupcakes, free beer tastings by Bacchus Brewing Company, and circus performances by Circus Culture. A walking tour led by exhibit coordinator Evan D. Williams and featured artists will depart promptly at 6:30 PM. Live musicians will be stationed at each art piece until 8:00 PM.
Says Gary Ferguson, Executive Director of the Downtown Ithaca Alliance, “Art in the Heart is our way of bringing diverse and exciting contemporary art to downtown Ithaca for thousands of residents and visitors to enjoy.” This year’s show is the most eclectic and ambitious one yet, featuring large outdoor works by ten local, regional, and international artists all within three walkable city blocks.
A new element of Art in the Heart is the inclusion of interactive pieces. Showcased is a responsive light-emitting installation by local artist and software developer Mark Zifchock (on 102 The Commons) and a series of paper cutouts for visitors to manipulate and take away by Vienna-based conceptual artist Klaus Pinter (in Home Dairy Alley).
The show also features stunning murals and sculptural works by Barron Naegel (State and Cayuga), Kadie Salfi (Press Bay Alley), Kristin Dutcher and Bryan Riek (Tompkins County Public Library), Jim Garmhausen (Green Garage Exterior), Mary Beth Ihnken (Sunny Days -City Hall Alley), Rob Licht (City Hall Lot), and Michael Sampson (Green Garage Exterior.)
The exhibit runs through November 5, 2015. All pieces (with the exception of Pinter’s free cutouts) are available for purchase with prices ranging from $1,000 to $11,500. This year, the Downtown Ithaca Alliance has committed to acquiring at least one of the pieces for its permanent public collection. The entire community will get to help decide which piece gets selected for purchase via a Facebook poll to be posted later this summer.
Visitors embarking on a self-guided walking tour of the exhibit can pick up illustrated guides at the Downtown Ithaca Visitor Center (171 The Commons) or can access a mobile guide for iPhone by downloading PocketSights on the iTunes app store.
Art in the Heart is a program of the Downtown Ithaca Alliance (Ithaca Downtown Business Improvement District, Inc.), a State of New York chartered 501c3 not-for-profit organization charged with the revitalization, development, promotion, and management of downtown Ithaca. Art in the Heart is supported in part by a grant from the Community Arts Partnership and by private donations, corporate sponsorships, and sales commissions.