What is art? What indefinable quality magically transforms matter into something that gives one insight into the reality of our surroundings or that of the human condition? What propels it into the upper echelons of brilliance? Is it a consensus of opinion? An agreed-upon collective aesthetic? Even better yet, maybe everything is a work of art. Maybe all of life is art. Maybe every living, breathing second of life that composes each day should be put upon a gargantuan pedestal and praised for its contribution to our collective reality. Are all the seemingly banal objects around us simply waiting to be assigned meaning? Or are they just objects?
Part of the journey is discovery. And to discover one must search. The organizers of the Grinder Creative Arts Expo are on a journey. And their journey rejects all debates about what is and is not art. “At Grinder, you might walk down an isle and find a jewelry designer, a sculptor, a poet, a cartoonist, a tattoo artist and an abstract painter selling their wares to the same patrons,” says Grinder Arts Expo creator Kody Chamberlain. “We challenge the community to reject the pseudo-intellectual nonsense and judge the work for themselves using their own criteria.” Them’s fighting words, boy! Meant to ruffle feathers? Sure! But challenging our community’s preconceived notions about art is what the Grinder Creative Arts Expo is all about — as well as creative endeavors that stimulate, provoke, confront, enlighten, and inform the observer.
Since 2005, artists Kody Chamberlain and Rob Guillory have been putting together gatherings for Acadiana’s creative types whose art and creative pursuits stray far from the beaten path. Whether it is tattoo artists or graphic novelists, junk sculptors or film makers, painters or priests, it’s all represented at a Grinder Expo. “Each expo is a unique creative experience designed to promote and expand the creative community in and around Acadiana,” says Chamberlain. “There is already a thriving gallery community, but many of the fringe arts are blatantly ignored, and we felt that was a void that needed to be filled.”
Over the past few years, Chamberlain and Guillory have produced eight Grinder Expos, hosted by various night clubs in downtown Lafayette — the last of which at Grant St. Dancehall drew over 400 people. Attendees walk about a series of tables set up — LAGCOE-style — examining the various media presented at each participant's display booth. “Participation in the expo-style marketplace fluctuates but usually falls between 30 and 40 individual vendors," Chamberlain says. "If you toss in the live art and various stage acts such as live painting and poetry, belly dancers, and fashion shows, the total is probably around 80 total contributors.”
Expect to see all the above and more at the next Grinder Creative Arts Expo, including new artists like custom book designer Deborah Norsworthy and a doll artist named Ugly Shyla. Come out and support the arts. It is the same night as ArtWalk, so you’ve got no excuse.
Drivers would have to secure dogs riding in truck beds while on interstate highways, if the Senate agrees to a bill backed by the House.
The easy one-piece way to style
Comfy feet for long days
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Wednesday, April 23, 2014:
Newsy bits for the whole fam
Wednesday's Blogs from the Bog!
Don't forget: our annual Festival International contest begins Thursday! Win. Cool. Stuff.
An effort to prohibit employers from discriminating based on sexual orientation or gender identity was shelved Tuesday for the legislative session.
Louisiana won't lessen its penalties for marijuana possession, keeping laws on the books that allow people to be jailed up to 20 years for repeat offenses of having the drug in hand.
State bar foundation bestows honor on founder and managing partner of NeunerPate
This Wednesday, April 23, marks the first full day of INNOV8 Lafayette.
National awards recognize outstanding achievement in leadership development and leadership programs
A federal court magistrate has issued a seven-page schedule of hearings, conferences and deadlines leading up to January’s trial aimed at determining how much money BP will owe in Clean Water Act fines as a result of its 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
“This is one of the oldest divides that exists, and that divide is about the haves and the have-nots.”
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The state’s “greedy trial lawyers” haven’t scared this oil giant away.
Local boutique celebrates all things green
It took a few weeks for the pitfalls to emerge in the governor’s $25 billion budget, but the time of judgment has finally arrived.
With pressure continuing to build for him to resign, Congressman Vance McAllister announced plans recently to remain secluded during the Easter break, but the Swartz Republican has said he’ll be back on the Hill casting votes and attending committee meetings when the congressional recess ends April 28.
A bid to limit the use of unmanned aircraft on private property in Louisiana stalled Monday in the Louisiana Senate.
A Shreveport lawmaker said Monday he's scrapping his proposal to name the Bible as Louisiana's official state book.
Tender meat and crispy bread create a white-linen-worthy sandwich
Attorney hopes fellow lawyers will join him in urging the D.A. to step aside and allow a competent, ethical challenger to take over the scandal-ridden office.
INNOV8 Lafayette launches its weeklong festival dedicated to cultivating innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship.
Smaller Microsoft Store installations sell a wide array of Microsoft products (Windows phones, Surface tablets and Xbox consoles) but don’t include everything.
Dirk Powell and Cedric Watson will perform together during an intimate gig at Parish Ink, 310 Jefferson St., from 9-11:30 p.m. Wednesday.
See cutting-edge technologies Thursday in brief presentations/demonstrations from 3rd Dimension Media, C&C Technologies, Cimation and UL Lafayette School of Engineering.
An official with the Louisiana Department of Education was arrested on a range of charges Friday after allegedly breaking into a home and brandishing a knife.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Get Festival ready