Fears and Phobias, a mixed-media exhibit at Alexandria’s Torpedo Factory, brings forth the anxieties that lurk in the corners of our minds, and challenges us to look right at them.
Lia Newman juried the show, choosing 21 pieces out of more than 500 submissions. Newman points out a painting of the traditional European toile de jouy. “There's all these lovely, cheerful people on swings and in lovely dresses, basically with guns being aimed at them,” she says.
Some of those holding guns have their faces half-covered by bandanas, some are in full army fatigues, and some of the gunslingers are children.
“I think it's the dichotomy of life, the dangers that might exist,” Newman says.
Susanne Vigel, one of the local artists in the show, drew a jewel-toned, zoomed in cockroach. “The name of the drawing is Ick,” she says, “And I think that pretty much sums it up!”
To create the work, Vigel says she spent about 100 hours face-to-face with the pest. As you gaze at it, or another of the 21 pieces of artwork that make up the show, don’t be surprised if you can’t stop staring, even though you may want to look away.
Fears and Phobias runs through February 19 at the Torpedo Factory’s Target Gallery.
Robert Swanson revolutionized American advertising and wrote some of the most memorable ad jingles of the 1950s and '60s for products ranging from Campbell's Soup to Pall Mall cigarettes. He died at 95 July 17 at his home in Phoenix, Ariz.
The American Cheese Society will begin proctoring its next Certified Cheese Professional Exam in Des Moines, Iowa, on Wednesday, during the group's annual conference. The rigorous test is only in its fifth year, but nearly 600 people have passed it already. Industry experts say the exam is necessary because of the evolving standards in the growing American cheese business.
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