What Caught Catherine's Eye

The Harrison Center for the Arts is home to 36 resident artists, 5 galleries, and what I am told is an almost innumerable number of interns like myself.  Every artist has their own distinctive style, which is reflected not only in their art, but also their studio spaces.

 Being my first day, I wasn't completely sure what to expect (truthfully I'm still not), but I find I have a newfound admiration for the Harrison Center, and an abundance of inspiration just from imagining the daily lives of the people who work here.

The building itself is an interesting blend of old architecture and modern elements. Places like the City Gallery seem almost entirely new, or recently renovated, while certain studios, galleries, and hallways, are enhanced by the touch of time. However, don't let the older areas fool you; they're still quite alive with the energy of the Harrison Center. There are a number of surprises waiting for a viewer with a "curious eye", such as the nine wire men, the “Caretakers” hidden throughout the building; each performing a different task (such as wiring, painting, etc.). I saw one on my initial tour, but on my own adventure I was unable to spot any, which leads me to believe that they might only be found when not being looked for ... or that I may not be as observant as I thought.

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This is a portion of the wire sculpture, "Ride the Lightning"  done by artist Chad Campbell (who also created the wire men mentioned above).

Many of the artists at the Harrison Center have adapted Indiana and Indianapolis culture as a central theme of their work. It is not a requirement for any of the artists to do so, but as the Harrison Center serves to enrich and inspire the community, it would seem that the artists themselves are inspired by the community. Artist Allison Ford, for example, has created a series of moth necklaces, each representing a different species native to Indiana.

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One of my favorite pieces that I saw while on my initial tour was a pop-surrealist painting, "Prance" done by Emma Overman. I found the work in her studio to be enchanting, and I think I easily could have admired it for several hours as opposed to several minutes. While I'm not entirely certain why this work speaks to me the way it does (it could be that I see myself within it), it makes me wonder what art would speak to certain people. There are so many ways art can inspire an individual, and similarly there are so many ways art has influence over a community. Whatever my time here may bring, or whatever I come to experience, I am sure that it will be an enriching experience, and I will be all the better for it.

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