Yoga & Meditative Creation for Slow Art Day at Wanås Konst in Sweden

September 3rd, 2019

For Slow Art Day 2019, Wanås Konst – Center for Art and Learning based in southern Sweden organized a full day focused on three main activities: yoga, slow art exploration, and meditative action painting.

The day started with the yoga session led by yoga instructor Risa Larsen, who focused on gaining new energy and a relaxed body and mind.

Then throughout the day, visitors were encouraged to choose five artworks in the sculpture park, taking the time to observe each slowly. 

Finally, in the afternoon, visitors were invited to the “Meditative Action Painting” workshop inspired by the Danish artist Jeppe Hein. Participants filled Tibetan singing bowls with colored water and used a ringer to slowly move around the edge of the bowl to create vibrations. These vibrations then created a work of art by sprinkling colored droplets onto a canvas underneath the bowl.

Meditative Action Painting Workshop
Photo credit: Elin Magnusson

Elin Magnusson, Head of Education at Wanås Konst, reported that many of the visitors stayed for the entire program.

We look forward to seeing what this site-specific, international contemporary art-focused organization has in store for their 2020 Slow Art Day.

– Ashley

First Slow Art Day for Colby College Museum of Art

August 29th, 2019

Colby College Museum of Art hosted its first Slow Art Day last April and they used a simple design: for each of five artworks, participants looked for five minutes then talked for five minutes.

During the discussions, visitors shared stories about the new details they noticed – like the interior architecture of a building, background activities, color, reflection, light, sound, and perspective.

“Cigarette Girls,” Seville, 1895 by Walter Gay

2019 Slow Art Day at Colby included the following art:

  • “Columbus Circle at Night,” 2010 by Richard Estes
  • “Red Tree in High Winter,” 1968 by Alma Thomas
  • “Cigarette Girls,” Seville, 1895 by Walter Gay (pictured)
  • “Yellowstone Falls,” 1891 by Grafton Tyler Brown
  • “Ntozakhe II, Own Things or Everything,” Parktown, South Africa, 2016 by Zanele Muholi

After the slow looking sessions, the museum gathered everyone in the lobby for coffee, tea, and sweets.

We look forward to their second Slow Art Day in 2020.

– Ashley

Insightful Slow Art Day at AMP Studio

August 21st, 2019

Valerie Arntzen, assemblage artist at AMP Studio in Vancouver, Canada, invited Slow Art Day 2019 participants to look at one of two pieces of her artwork slowly and then discuss the experience.

Not surprisingly, Valerie found — as Marcel Duchamp once said — that the “spectator completes the work of the artist.” In other words, the Slow Art Day participants were active co-creators of Valerie’s art bringing new and varied meaning and perspective.

It’s great to have artists and “spectators” directly interact via slow looking. In fact, we invite artists all over the world to open up their studios for Slow Art Day and hope that more will follow Valerie’s example next year.

– Ashley

Clare Gallery Hosts Successful Third Slow Art Day

August 20th, 2019

The Clare Gallery in Hartford, Connecticut hosted its third Slow Art Day last April featuring an exhibit of works by Ann Grasso, “Begging Bowls and Offering Bowls.”

They came up with an interesting design for their session.

Here’s what they did:

  • Each participant chose one work from the exhibit to study individually for fifteen minutes.
  • Then the group moved from piece to piece with the “student” of that work describing their reflections, questions and connections.
  • Following the individual study and discussion, viewers then studied three works at length as a group.
  • At the end, the artist Ann Grasso herself, who had observed everything up to that point, joined the dialogue.

Grasso told participants that she was delighted by the many details, shapes, and cultural symbols they saw through her work (including, of course, some she herself did not see).

Here at Slow Art Day we encourage artists to participate like this as long as they do what Grasso did here: wait to the end to share their reflections (otherwise, the artist can overdetermine what the viewers see or don’t see).

Patricia Curtis, who helps run the gallery, said the day went well and they are looking forward to 2020.

“Participants seemed to lose themselves in the meaning of the works and thoroughly enjoyed hearing so many insights and interpretations.”

Patricia Curtis, Pastoral Associate to the Clare Gallery Committee

– Ashley

The Clare Gallery is a not-for-profit professional exhibition gallery located in the Franciscan Center for Urban Ministry in Connecticut.