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Thursday, May 28, 2009

Opening Saturday for real Art Ways public art commissions

Real Art Ways
56 Arbor St., Hartford, (860) 232-1006
Four Public Art Projects in the Parkville and Frog Hollow Neighborhoods
May 30—Fall, 2009.
Opening Sat., May 30, 2—5 p.m., free bus tours 3—5 p.m.

Press release

Real Art Ways will present four public art projects in Hartford's Frog Hollow & Parkville neighborhoods, by artists Margarida Correia, Satch Hoyt, Sofia Maldonado, and Matthew Rodriguez. Projects will open Saturday, May 30, 2009 and will extend through the fall. Activities associated with the projects include artist talks, audio guides, bike tours, and a neighborhood map. For more information, call 860.232.1006 or visit The four public art projects, each created specifically for Hartford, will make use of the existing culture, creativity, and vibrancy of the Parkville and Frog Hollow neighborhoods.

From 3—5 p.m. on Saturday there will be free bus tours of the four projects leaving every 10 minutes from Real Art Ways. At 3 and 4 p.m. there will be free bike tours leaving from Real Art Ways. In addition, on or after May 30, one can have a self-guided cell phone audio tour by dialing (860) 760-9979.

• Photographer Margarida Correia has been working with members of Hartford's Portuguese community. Two Parkville billboards will display photographs of Hartford youth embracing their Portuguese heritage, and of the Praia da Nazaré, Portugal's famous beach. Street lamp banners on Park Street will display album covers of famous Fado singers. There will be an accompanying audio component. Artist Talk: TBA

Correia was born in Lisbon, Portugal. Margarida's work explores the relationships that people from her generation develop with things they collect and care for. She is interested in how inherited objects are interwoven with personal stories to develop our understanding of history, how they can go beyond their simple physical existence by linking the cultural values of successive generations.

• Satch Hoyt will create a labyrinth in Frog Hollow's Pope Park. The labyrinth, constructed from clotheslines, will address the migratory voyage of the residents who reside in the neighborhood. Upon completion, the public will be invited to traverse the labyrinth's path. Artist Talk: Thurs., May 28 6 p.m., with Matthew Rodriguez.

Hoyt, born in London to a white British mother and a father of African-Jamaican ancestry, is currently living and working in Berlin, Germany. The sculptural trope in Hoyt's work addresses the facts on the ground, so to speak, of black experience, while his drawings tap into a spirit of fantasy, refuge, and transcendence. Hoyt is also an accomplished professional musician and composer. His visual art often draws from his musical background.

Sofia Maldonado's mural, on the Pelican Tattoo building in Frog Hollow, will blend elements of female aesthetics and street cultures. Maldonado will also collaborate with young people in Parkville and Frog Hollow neighborhoods resulting in the creation of uniquely designed murals and events that celebrate youth culture. Artist Talk: Thursday, August 27, 6 p.m.

Maldonado was born in Puerto Rico. During her undergraduate studies she painted numerous murals, with or without permission, in abandoned buildings, barrios and indoor spaces as a way to bring beauty to each site. Sofia's artwork is a blend of fashion trends, the Latina female aesthetic and various street culture elements, such as skateboarding, graffiti, public art, reggaeton and punk music.

Matthew Rodriguez will install a series collages and murals that use found materials, staged photographs, and paintings, including 70 characters on trees in Pope Park and one on the side of a local Parkville bakery. The results will be playful "characters" residing in the neighborhood's neglected spaces. Artist Talk: Thursday, May 28, 6 p.m., with Satch Hoyt.

Rodriguez was born in Houston, Texas. His childlike creations encapsulate urban anxieties while ridiculing them by standing out in stark contrast to their decaying surroundings. He draws out and celebrates the character of these overlooked spaces, asking the viewers to recognize the potential in the world around them.

Kristina Newman-Scott, Real Art Ways' Director of Visual Arts, explains the artist selection process: "The world of contemporary art can sometimes be very insular, its audience limited to those who seek it out in galleries. The artists we selected for this program have a particular interest in working in the public realm, and their works simultaneously connect people to the art and to each other. Therein lies the magic."

Will K. Wilkins, executive director of Real Art Ways, says, "Frog Hollow and Parkville are two urban neighborhoods with a lot to offer. Real Art Ways is sponsoring this new art, but we are also trying to make people aware of what is already in the neighborhoods."

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