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June 10, 2010

Rain or shine, art walk set for Friday

Several downtown locations hosting exhibits

SELLERSBURG — Inclement weather forced the postponement of the initial art walk of the New Albany Bicentennial Art Project last month, but the delay has led to an expanded list of exhibits that will be on display Friday.

From viewing recently-restored historic stained glass windows at St. Mary’s Catholic Church to examining the five installations in downtown New Albany, art lovers can take advantage of six hours worth of displays and entertainment beginning at 4 p.m.

The initial art installations — located at The Carnegie Center for Art and History, the downtown YMCA, River City Winery, The Bank Street Brewhouse and near Second Baptist Church at the former Israel Boarding House — are the centerpiece of the evening.

There will be five temporary sculptures placed downtown each year leading up to New Albany’s bicentennial in 2013, and the first round of displays are being marked with an art walk from 6 to 9 p.m. that begins at the Carnegie Center.

The Carnegie Center — which is sponsoring the Bicentennial Public Art Project along with the New Albany Urban Enterprise Association — is hosting an artist talk from 6 to 7 p.m. Friday.

The museum is also presenting Glass by the Block from 5 to 9 p.m. Friday and 12 to 4 p.m. Saturday. It features the glass installation downtown and five glass displays at Indiana University Southeast along Grant Line Road.

Julie Schweitzer is the director of the Bicentennial Public Art Project, and this week she was named director of the Arts Council of Southern Indiana.

One of her first moves was to organize two exhibits on behalf of the Arts Council that will open Friday to coincide with the art walk.

From 5 to 9 p.m., at the Arts Council building at 820 E. Market St., four artists will display their work as part of a free event that’s open to the public.

“It’s going to be a great show,” Schweitzer said.

Also that evening, Schmitt Furniture located at the corner of State and Main streets will host an exhibit featuring local artists that’s being organized by Schweitzer.

To cap the evening, the Rock n Roll Ballet, which features the Louisville Ballet Youth Ensemble, will perform Quintet for Glass and Strings: Dance, at the New Albany riverfront amphitheater.

The free concert will be from 7:30 to 10 p.m., and will also include musical performances by Whistle Peak and The Deloreans.

Michael Ladd, executive director of the New Albany UEZ, said the Bicentennial Art Project is another example of entities combining for the betterment of the city.

The activities designed around the initial art walk are evidence of how the project can benefit New Albany economically and socially, he said.

“Eventually, one can step back and see there is a plan and most people and groups are working together to make some really good things happen,” Ladd said. “That generates more interest in the downtown and the town as a whole.”

Unless there is severe weather, the art walk and indoor exhibits will happen “rain or shine,” Schweitzer said. If the weather is bad, Schweitzer said those that plan on attending should call the Carnegie Center at 812-944-7336.

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