Glen Arbor Arts Center [GAAC]
March 29 – May 30, 2024
Online application period: Through January 31, 2024 at 11:59 pm EST
The following is A True Story.
A guy walked into an art fair booth, looked at the sculpture in it, and asked the exhibitor, “Did you make this?”
The exhibitor said, “Indeed I did.”
The exhibitor’s wife asked the guy, “Why did you ask that question?’
The guy said, Well, because the work looked so good [and by “good” he meant: complicated construction, high quality execution of the idea, the objects “looked like” the real thing]. Nobody could have done that by hand. Only a machine could have done it, he said.
Human hands with their dexterous, opposable thumbs have allowed us to innovate, to use tools, to become nimble, skillful, creative and artful makers. Think:
Betye Saar’s The Liberation of Aunt Jemima.
Nick Cave’s Sound Suits.
El Anatsui’s mammoth hangings made from cast-off materials – e.g. bottle caps, foil from liquor bottles.
Conversely, we live in a techno-centric, machine-driven world that leaves one with the feeling that doing things by hand is old-fashioned, too slow, and could just as easily be done by a machine; that it’s part of the natural order that machines supplant hand-created objects, jobs, and endeavors.
In a time of machine dominance, there is case to be made that right now is the perfect moment to celebrate making-by-hand; to demonstrate the diverse, wondrous things hands can do; to showcase the dialogue between hand and materials; to spotlight the exuberant union of mind and mitts. The Glen Arbor Arts Center’s exhibition By Hand is a meditation on and consideration of the myriad ways in which the human hand is intrinsic to creative work; and a demonstration of what human hands can make.
Visual art in 2D + 3D, made by the applicant between 2022 -2024. Work submitted for consideration should be made primarily by hand. Tools use is acceptable, and not contrary to the spirit of the exhibit. Whatever the maker’s tool[s], the lion’s share of the creative heavy lifting should be done by the human’s hands, rather than outsourcing it to, or having it be the function of a machine.
2D and 3D work including paper, clay, fiber, metal, wood, glass, drawing, painting, printmaking, furniture, mixed media, weaving, sculpture, stitchery, and more. Photographs are eligible but must be grounded in hand-made, photo-based imagery created by the artist using historical printing methods. Commercially-processed, digital or computer-altered photographs are not eligible.
2D work should not exceed 48” in width or 65” in length.
3D work must be freestanding and easily moved, not to exceed 35 pounds. Because of companion programs planned in conjunction with the exhibition, 3D work will be occasionally and temporarily relocated in the gallery and in the GAAC.
Applicants may enter up to two  submissions for the juror’s consideration. $25 GAAC member, $35 nonmember. This is a nonrefundable fee.
- Exhibition runs March 29 – May 30, 2024
- Apply on-line: Through January 31, 2024 at 11:59 pm EST
- Notification of acceptance: Mid-February
- Shipped work deadline: March 18 – 21, 2024
- Drop-off: Friday, March 22, 9 am – 2 pm; Saturday, March 23, 9 am — NOON
- Pick-up: Friday, May 31, 9 am – 2 pm; Saturday, June 1, 9 am — NOON
- Reception: March 29, 5 – 7 pm
Barbara Bushey has been working in textiles for over 35 years. The Hillsdale, Michigan artist’s work has appeared four times in Quilt National, as well as many juried shows throughout the country and overseas. Her work is in the permanent collections of The White House, Washington DC, the University of Wyoming, and Hillsdale College, and many private collections. The work has been published in Art/Quilt Magazine and the Surface Design Journal. Bushey retired from a career in college teaching in 2022, and has refocused her sights on her studio practice.
Three awards will be given: $500 Best of Show; and two, $150 Merit Awards. These awards are made possible by Amy L. Clark-Carels Family Fund, and Barbara and Victor Klein Fund.
- You may submit up to 2 works for the juror’s consideration.
- You are required to submit an image of the overall work. You also have the option of providing 1 additional, detail image per work submitted.
- Please provide well-composed, focused images of your work. This is the work people will view online. Present your work as well as you possibly can.
- Do not photograph 2D work behind glass. If framed, please do not include the 2D artwork’s frame in your exhibition image unless it is part of the composition vs. a finishing detail.
The By Hand exhibition will be installed in the GAAC gallery, and viewable as an on-line gallery on the GAAC website.
- Work submitted must be one-of-a-kind, innovative, and original in design. Work derivative of other artists or work created in a workshop with the collaboration of an instructor is not accepted.
- An entry may be comprised of multiple units [e.g. a diptych]; but may not exceed the maximum dimensions or weights described below. If offered for sale, a single entry comprised of multiple units must be sold for one price. The individual units may not be sold separately.
- Work submitted must have been completed in the last two years [made from 2022 – present].
- Work must be gallery ready, when submitted. Paintings and other wall works should be finished or framed. Please use gallery wire. No saw tooth hanging hardware is allowed. NOTE: Unacceptable work includes wet paintings, work submitted on warped canvases, work that has evidence of pet hair, food stains or other marks/detritus that are not an intended part of the composition will not be allowed. Exhibitors will be asked to bring their accepted work up to gallery-ready standards before they are allowed to be part of the exhibit.
- No work will be accepted after the dates and times for delivery listed on the prospectus.
The artist’s contact email provided on the application must remain active during the submissions and exhibition process. The artist is responsible for checking their email for exhibition acceptance and/or decline, and other information regarding the exhibition.
Artist’s Statement | REQUIRED
By Hand applicants must submit a short [100 words max] statement that provides context for looking at the artwork. How does your work respond to, and answer the creative problem at the heart of this exhibit?
- The sale price written on the application is the FINAL price if the work is accepted in the exhibition. Exhibitors may not change sale price after the work is accepted for exhibition.
- The GAAC will retain a 40% commission on work sold during the exhibition. Artists receive 60% of the final selling price. Artists will receive payment following the close of the exhibition.
NOTE: The GAAC staff and Exhibitions Committee reserve the right to the final selection of work to be shown in the exhibition. Accepted work may not be removed before the close of the exhibition.
For More Information
Contact Sarah Bearup-Neal, GAAC Gallery Manager: (231) 334-6112