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GO ART!

October 20, 2017 - 2:36pm

Photo courtesy of Jim Burns.

Information provided by GO ART!

GO ART! will present an exhibit of photography and illustration by local artist Jim Burns Nov. 9 through Feb. 3 at Seymour Place in Downtown Batavia.

Titled "Cabal and Zen," Burns says "The main portion of this exhibit was inspired by the tension of daily life and the desire for change. There are also individual images of beauty and peace."

There will be an artist reception from 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 16 at the gallery.

GO ART! at Seymour Place is located at 201 E. Main St. Gallery hours are Thursday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Saturday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; and the second Sunday of each month from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

(Editor's note: The statement by artist Jim Burns was changed at his request.)

October 13, 2017 - 5:53pm

GO ART! invites you to chalk the "Walk of Hope" on Saturday, Oct. 14 along the sidewalk at the Liberty Square Plaza.

For a $20 donation you can secure your spot along the sidewalk near Ficarella's Pizzeria's parking lot.

Artists can arrive at 7:30 a.m. and judging will happen at 2:30 p.m. You must bring your own chalk art supplies.

This is part of the (hurricane) "Harvey Festival," which runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Prizes -- sponsored by Adam Miller Toy and Bicycle, Pollyanna & Dot/The Hidden Door, Charles Men's Shop, Batavia Bootery, Main St. Pizza Company and The YNGodess Shop -- will be awarded for the best design in the following age groups:

  • 10 and below
  • 11 to 14
  • 15 to 17
  • 18 and up

All proceeds of the event will go toward aid for the victims of the summer's devastating hurricanes.

For more information, contact Jodi Fisher at   [email protected] or phone 343-9313.

October 4, 2017 - 11:08am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Announcements, GO ART!, arts.

Here is a list of current members of the GO ART! board of directors:

  • Tammy Hathaway (Genesee County) - President
  • Thomas Jennings Sr. (Orleans County) - Vice President
  • Brad Eddy (Genesee County) - Secretary
  • Jennifer Neroni-Trupo (Orleans County) - Treasurer
  • Shane Ashton (Genesee County)
  • Karen Crittenden (Genesee County)
  • Julia Garver (Genesee County)
  • Tracy Jennings (Orleans County)
  • Stuart McLean (Genesee County)
  • Patti Pacino (Genesee County)
  • Barbara Pierce (Genesee County)
  • Idris Salih (Orleans County)
  • Mark Scarborough (Orleans County)
  • Mary Jo Whitman (Genesee County)
September 29, 2017 - 10:29am
posted by Howard B. Owens in history, Oakfield, GO ART!, news.

Press release:

GO ART! is pleased to cosponsor this free presentation with the Oakfield Historical Society at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 3, at the Oakfield Community & Government Center. Michael Eula, Ph.D., Genesee County Historian, will speak on the history of Italians in Genesee County, a subject particularly interesting to the Oakfield community's history with the gypsum mine.

This talk is presented as part of GO ART!'s GO-C Series.

Eula gives the following introduction to his program: 

"On November 2nd, 1905, an Italian immigrant, Gaitano Valente, while working as a miner in Oakfield for the United States Gypsum Company, was killed in an avalanche of rocks that were being excavated. Less than a year later, on September 13th, 1906, it was reported that “200 Italians from New York City” were being brought into Oakfield to work as strikebreakers for that same company. It was assumed that a riot would ensue – and as a result, there was a collection of guns to be used in the expected confrontation.

"These two incidents took place within a national context of mass Italian immigration punctuated by a perception of Italians as the 'other' – a characterization capable of producing the largest mass lynching to ever take place in American history – the infamous murder of eleven Italian immigrants in New Orleans in 1891. This event served as a catalyst for attacks on Italians throughout the nation. The obvious question, then, is how the Italian immigrants of the late nineteenth century – the 'other' as depicted routinely in the newspapers of the day – could become, only a few generations later, a respected and influential member of American society.

Focusing on this question in terms of Genesee County, we will follow the journey of the typical Italian immigrant in the late 1800s as he or she, in subsequent generations, evolved from the outsider on the margins of society into a member of the mainstream of Genesee County – and American – life.

Becoming American: The Journey of Italians in Genesee County, NY
By Michael Eula, Genesee County Historian
Tuesday, Oct. 3, 7 p.m.

Oakfield Community and Government Center
3219 Drake Street, Oakfield
Free admission. Co-sponsored by GO ART!'s GO-C Genesee-Orleans Culture Connects Series

August 30, 2017 - 3:38pm
posted by Billie Owens in GO ART!, art, batavia, news, Announcements.

Press release:

The Genesee-Orleans Regional Arts Council is looking for artists to participate in its fifth Members Challenge Show, which will be on display Sept. 10 through Dec. 9 at Seymour Place, 201 E. Main St. in Batavia.

GO ART! is challenging artists to create artwork that invokes the idea of, feeling, meaning or experience of "Guilty Pleasure." All levels of artists are welcome and encouraged to participate.

Artists are encouraged to submit works that interpret this theme in any way they choose. One piece per artist requested. No media restrictions. Entries must be no larger than 3’ x 3’.

Artists interested in participating can drop artwork off, along with an application (download at www.goart.org/galleries,) to GO ART! at Seymour Place. For more information or to become a membervisit www.goart.org, or contact GO ART! at 585-343-9313 or [email protected]. Entry Fee: Members -- FREE.

GO ART! will be accepting submissions Sept. 5-9No submissions will be accepted after Sept. 9. Selected works will be displayed in the Bar Gallery.

This will be “The Public's Choice" show with an artist reception, 6 to 8 p.m. on Sept. 14 with music, light fare and beverages.

Gallery Hours: Thursday, Friday 11 a.m. - 7 p.m. and Saturday 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. Also on the second Sunday of the month 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

August 16, 2017 - 1:44pm
posted by Billie Owens in Announcements, GO ART!, music, accordions.

Presented by GLOW Traditions at GO ART!

"Accordions 'round the World"  -- (Irish, Italian, Polish and Bulgarian music) featuring Alex Alexandrov, Marta Driscoll, Casey Kliszak, Ken Machelski, Ted McGraw, Frank Reino, John Ryan with Jim Campbell, MC.

SUNY Geneseo Professor of Music Jim Kimball is concertmaster.

7 p.m., Friday, Aug. 18
 
Le Roy Country Club  7759 E. Main Road,  Le Roy
 
$5 donation suggested.
 
Bring your own lawn chairs, blankets.
 
More information: www.goart.org  585-343-9313
July 31, 2017 - 3:55pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, GO ART!, batavia, Announcements, art.

Information from GO ART!

Color Impressions by MAF: Fiber Art Exhibit is now on display at GO ART!  201 E. Main St. (Seymour Place) in Downtown Batavia. It ends Sept. 10.

Mary Ann takes fiber art to another level. Her combinations of cloth, paint and color, stitches and design, and pieces of this and that, meld into an art form that is exciting and unique. It is visual, tactile and dimensional.

There will be an artist reception from 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 24, at Seymour Place.

Gallery Hours:

  • Thursday, Friday 11 a.m. - 7 p.m.
  • Saturday 11 a.m. - 4 p.m.
  • Second Sunday of the month 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.
July 12, 2017 - 3:51pm
posted by Billie Owens in teatime, GO ART!, news, Announcements.

From 2 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 12, at GO ART! 'twill be teatime for "children of all ages" with special guests the Queen of Hearts and the one and only Mad Hatter, fresh out of Wonderland for the afternoon to enjoy desserts and game playing.

The location is 201 E. Main St. in Downtown Batavia.

There will also be crafts and more, including a Selfie Station for taking divine photographs.

Attendees under age 8 must be accompanied by an adult but at no additional cost.

Cost to attend this high tea is $20 for members and $25 for nonmembers.

For more information and to register please visit www.goart.org/teainwonderland

Do feel free to dress up just for the fun of it. Hats are de rigueur; gloves optional.

(The Queen has tentatively promised not to shout "Off with their heads!" for the two hours she will be present, but we're keeping our fingers crossed just in case...you know the saw about "old habits." Predictably, we have little to gainsay re: the Mad Hatter's lack of lucidity. It is what it is...)

July 7, 2017 - 4:44pm
posted by Billie Owens in GO ART!, Announcements, news, picnic in the park.

Press release:

GO ART! would like to extend an enormous thank you to all who attended our 39th Annual Picnic in the Park presented by the Red Osier. Mother Nature blessed us with amazing weather allowing us the liberties to gather and enjoy the festivities from morning until early evening.

We cannot emphasize enough how much we enjoy having the kids participate in the parade nor how much we enjoy seeing family and friends visiting and laughing as they relaxed in their lawn chairs.

Michelle Cryer and team worked tirelessly to schedule and commit the artisans, vendors, non-profits, stage delivery, trash cans and everything your eyes and ears took in on Tuesday. A big job well done by all.

And how about those bands?! The feedback on the bands has been fantastic. We didn’t expect the headliner Britishmania to take as long as they did to set up, but the wait was worth it. Everyone loved them and they played longer than scheduled to make up for the extra time they took getting into their Beatles mindset.  It was the biggest crowd after 4 pm in over a decade.

Once again… thank you everyone for spending your morning, afternoon and evening with us.

And a big thank you to all our sponsors: The Original Red Osier Landmark Restaurant, Tonawanda Valley Federal Credit Union, City of Batavia, Rotary Club of Batavia, Pinnacle Manufacturing Company, Inc., Quality Inn, Stephen M. Hawley & Assoc. LLC, Turnbull Heating & Air Conditioning, Julia Garver & Joseph Ruh, Freed Maxick, Batavia Kiwanis Club, Arc of Genesee Orleans, Bob & Linda Knipe, Carrotman Productions, City of Batavia DPW, CY Farms / Batavia Turf, Diane & Hirman Kasten, DRH Construction, Max Pies Furniture, The Porter Family, Valle Jewelers, WBTA, Bouchard Financial Services LLC, McGinnis Excavating & Plumbing Inc.

July 4, 2017 - 6:40pm
posted by Maria Pericozzi in picnic in the park, GO ART!, news, batavia.

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The 39th annual GO ART! Picnic in the Park was Tuesday, starting at 11 a.m., featuring music, food, arts and crafts, and family fun at Centennial Park in Batavia. 

Britishmania, a Beatles Tribute Band, was the headlining act on the stage, promoting the "Summer of Love" theme. 

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July 3, 2017 - 5:33pm
posted by Maria Pericozzi in GO ART!, batavia, arts, news, notify.

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Gregory Hallock began the transition as the new executive director of the Genesee-Orleans Regional Arts Council five weeks ago, after former Executive Director Jennifer Gray resigned.

Hallock grew up in Delevan and went to Genesee Community College. He graduated with a Theater degree and from there, went to Brockport to get his bachelor’s degree in Acting, with a minor in Dance. He received his graduate degree from the University at Buffalo and started working for GO ART! a year and a half ago as the assistant director.

As the executive director, Hallock’s schedule changes from day to day. He works on events, finances and the Decentralization Grant Program.  

“I’m getting paid to be involved with the arts,” Hallock said. “It’s the most incredible thing in the world. Most people, arts is a luxury. It’s something that they can only hope they can get somewhere. I get to do it as my job.”

Since 1962, GO ART! has been dedicated to developing the cultural life in Genesee and Orleans counties by facilitating the creation, presentation and experience of art, heritage and traditions.

GO ART! is in the midst of hiring a new assistant director to take over the grants program. Hallock said he hopes the new director will start Aug. 1.

Gray resigned from the position for personal reasons, but still volunteers, Hallock said.

“She is still completely passionate about us,” Hallock said. “She is still dedicated to us.”

Hallock said his immediate goal is to increase the membership to 600 members by June 2018 and he also wants to increase awareness of GO ART!

“I’ve been trying to attend every event possible,” Hallock said. “Once I am done with the transition [into the new position] I am going to start going to board meetings all over the place.”

Picnic in the Park, at 11 a.m. on July 4, is one of Hallock’s big projects. He is in charge of the event at Centennial Park, and said he is excited for this year’s theme, “Summer of Love.”

Hallock said he is more than willing to meet with anybody or talk to anybody about GO ART!, and arts and culture in general. He wants to get more people into the building, known as Seymour Place, located at 201 E. Main St. in Batavia, to see the artwork.

“This building is our biggest expense,” Hallock said, of the historic brick property downtown. “It’s an amazing building and I want to utilize it to its fullest potential. I want to get people in this building and have art hanging on every wall.”

Hallock said working under Gray was extremely beneficial for his transition to the new position.  

“Working with her has been amazing,” Hallock said. “I’ve made the connections I didn’t previously have. I got to see how things worked here before I got to dive in.”

Anyone can visit GO ART! from 11 a.m. until 7 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays, 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Saturdays and every second Sunday from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m.

“We may not be the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, but we have some pretty amazing stuff here,” Hallock said.

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June 17, 2017 - 12:52pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, GO ART!, Announcements.

Press release:

The Genesee-Orleans Regional Arts Council (GO ART!) has been awarded a $10,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) to support the Genesee-Orleans Culture Connects Series, which is called "GO-C."

This is a multi-month program to highlight, explore and increase appreciation for the artistic contributions of diverse ethnic and cultural populations of Genesee and Orleans counties. The project will enhance our region’s current arts offerings, and enable us to create new opportunities to feature our region’s diversity through performances, arts workshops/classes, screenings, lectures, exhibits, and historical presentations.

NEA (www.arts.gov) Chairman Jane Chu said, “The National Endowment for the Arts is committed to nurturing artists and the arts in communities across the country. Supporting projects from organizations like GO ART! represents a wise investment in both western New York and the creative vitality of the nation.”

At GO ART! the project is being led by Karen Canning, Director of GLOW Traditions, a traditional arts and folklife program shared by the arts councils of the GLOW region.

Canning says, “We want to create more spaces and places where people can celebrate their cultural heritage, experience cultures different than their own, and find connections that may otherwise remain hidden or forgotten.”

GO ART! began offering programs in the series last October, including a Mexican Sugar Skull Workshop for Día de los Muertos, a Celtic Christmas event as part of Batavia’s Christmas in the City, and “Hush Now: Poems to Read Aloud,” poetry workshops and reading by Annette Daniels Taylor in February.

Currently, the Bank of Castile Main Gallery features a traveling exhibit, “Dream of America,” showcasing the work and creative lives of Hispanic farmworkers in our state.

The series will extend through 2017, and includes collaborations with local libraries, festivals and town and village partners. GO-C events will feature the cultural and/or artistic contributions of ethnic communities in our region, historically and present-day. These include Italian, Polish, Irish, African American, Latino, Anglo, and Native American traditions.

Other events will highlight unique cultural traditions of our region, related to our particular histories, environment, agriculture and economies.

We welcome information about programs on these themes, to add to our listings and promotions of GO-C events. Call 585-343-9313, email [email protected], or visit www.goart.org/go-c for a full listing.

June 16, 2017 - 4:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GO ART!, batavia, news, arts.

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Press release:

GO ART! presents an exhibit by Stacy Kirby “A Nice View “-- A Collection of En Plein Aire Paintings and Illustrations.”

After a couple decades of drawing, first in crayon then in pencil, Stacey Kirby picked up a paint brush, pursuing an education in illustration at Montserrat College of Art. After graduating she applied her illustration skills to mural painting, creating large scale art works for private homes, businesses, and public spaces.

Her passion is forming concept and idea into impactful paintings, whether the theme is historic, or of the natural world.

Kirby, a native of Albion, has been contributing murals to the Orleans and Monroe counties for a number of years.

"As a muralist, it's my goal to create artwork that is accessible to everyone, to encourage appreciation for art and the deeply rooted communities that we're a part of," Kirby said. "Public murals are a great opportunity to expose numbers of people to the arts, while sharing something important about that community with the world.”

In her free time she enjoys painting "en plein aire." She is working with “Traveling Towpath Troubadours" -- a music performance group whose summer concerts are part of the Bicentennial Celebration of the Erie Canal in Orleans County -- on a commemorative painting capturing the idea behind their 2017 endeavor.

"A Nice View" opens July 11 and runs through Sept. 10 at GO ART!, located inside historic Seymour Plac,e 201 E. Main St., Batavia.

Gallery hours: Thursday and Friday 11 a.m. - 7 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. - 4 p.m., and on the second Sunday of the month, 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

There will be a closing reception, with light fare, on Sept. 7 from 6 to 8 p.m.,  featuring “Traveling Towpath Troubadours” as entertainment and the unveiling of the commemorative painting.

May 19, 2017 - 5:54pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GO ART!, arts, entertainment, batavia, news.

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GO ART! opened two shows at Seymore Place last night -- the member's show, with the theme, "Summer of Love," in honor of the 50th anniversary of the hippies' heyday --summer of 1967, and "The Dream of America."

"The Dream of America: Separation & Sacrifice in the Lives of North Country Latino Immigrants," is a display of the photography and writing of Lisa Catalfamo Flores. It originally was on display at the Crandall Public Library in Glens Falls. GO ART! is its first stop on a statewide tour. The show will be on display through July 7.

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April 27, 2017 - 1:15pm
posted by Billie Owens in GO ART!, batavia, Announcements, news, photography.

GO ART! will present a collection of photographs depicting the lives and sacrifices of Latino workers in this country along the U.S.-Mexican border and the families they left behind in Mexico in a special exhibit next month.

"DREAM of America: Separation & Sacrifice in the Lives of North Country Latino Immigrants" is the title of the collection by Lisa Catalfamo-Flores.

The opening reception is from 6 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, May 16, at GO ART!, located at 201 E. Main St. in Downtown Batavia.

The exhibit will be subsequently available for viewing during these gallery hours:

Tuesday: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Wednesday: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Thursday: 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Friday: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., 6 – 8 p.m.
Saturday: 10  – 11 a.m.

Contact:
Gregory Hallock, assistant director
(585) 343-9313
[email protected]

April 7, 2017 - 12:30pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GO ART!, arts, batavia, news.

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Gregory Hallock, assistant director of GO ART!, reads off the winners Thursday night of the juried exhibition held by the arts council this month at the show's opening at Seymore Place in Batavia.

First Place, with a $200 cash prize, went to Conrad Borucki, of Alden. Joann Long, of Bloomfield, was second (both pictured below).

Third, Kevin Hammon and honorable mentions to: Rebecca Graham, John Hodgins, Lynnette Celedonia, Sabrina Ahmed, Brian Kemp, David Burke, Tracy Billings and Richard Ellingham.

GO ART! received hundreds of submissions under the theme "Art of the Rural." A total of 68 pieces were selected for the show, which runs through May 12.

Pictured with Hallock, Director Jennifer Gray and Board Member Mary Jo Whitman.

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March 28, 2017 - 11:59am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, news, picnic in the park, GO ART!.

With only one dissenting vote, the Batavia City Council last night agreed to take up the issue at its next meeting of providing $4,000 to GO ART! to help fund the July 4 Picnic in the Park.

The GO ART! Board almost didn't approve hosting the annual event in Centennial Park because of financial concerns. 

There was a time when the city provided GO ART! with $5,000 in annual funding. That assistance has been cut back to $2,500. This year, the county cut its funding to the arts council by 10 percent. Local donations continue to be hard to generate.

"We have a small number of businesses that support everything in our community and we tap them a lot," GO ART! Director Jennifer Gray told the council last night during a short presentation about the need for the assistance.

GO ART! was all set to drop the event when Michelle Crier came forward and offered to chair the event committee in an effort to keep it going at least one more year.

Gray said Picnic in the Park has never been a moneymaker, but it's at least broken even some years.

It costs $12,000 to host.

Council members had some questions about where the money was going to come from, with Al McGinnis raising a question about funds being transferred from the former Vibrant Batavia account. He said he thought that account was rolled back into the general fund. 

City Manager Jason Molino said that money remained earmarked, with approval of the council, for neighborhood projects and Picnic in the Park fit that criteria.

Gray, Crier and council members all mentioned how the community has lost some significant events in recent years, such as Summer in the City, the St. Joe's Lawn Fete, the Elba Onion Festival, and the Stafford Carnival.

Councilman John Canale noted that without Summer in the City and the Lawn Fete to support, the city was saving some money on those events.

"If we can look at some savings where events have been canceled, we can also apply some of those dollars towards the arts council," Canale said.

The council will vote on a resolution to approve the funding at its next business meeting, April 10. Councilwoman Rose Mary Christian voted no on the motion to consider the resolution at the business meeting.

Canale said he was a supporter of the arts -- he's a musician himself -- but in looking out for his constituents, he had to ask why the arts council was running into difficulty funding Picnic in the Park this year.

Gray said it's always been a struggle. The event was saved last year by a donation from the Red Osier restaurant in Stafford. 

Councilwoman Patti Pacino said another way of looking at it is that Gray is bringing more fiscal discipline to the arts council.

"A lot of the difference is we now have Jennifer Gray running this and she’s a businesswoman and she’s saying, ‘wait a minute, we can’t go in the drain every single year over Picnic in the Park,' " Pacino said.

Crier said she stepped up and volunteered to chair the picnic committee because she thinks it's an important community event, especially in light of other traditional events coming to an end.

"My husband and I moved here in 2000 from Buffalo," she said. "We raised our child in this community and I can’t image raising them anywhere else. Being in Batavia with the activities and the sense of community, you don't find that anywhere, especially on the west side of Buffalo. It’s a safe and beautiful community and it’s because of these events, because that’s where we see our neighbors, see our community."

Also at Monday's meeting:

  • Council considered an application from a group planning a rally at 8:15 a.m., April 8, on East Main Street, on the north side of the street near Clinton Street. The rally will protest Congressman Chris Collins. Councilman Bob Bialkowski raised concerns about whether the group would be trespassing on private property -- the Aldi's parking lot -- and City Manager Jason Molino said that was between the property owner and the rally organizers. He also said that technically, the organizers didn't need to apply for a permit. So long as the sidewalk or traffic isn't blocked, it's a permissible activity.  
  • Three people spoke against a proposed 80-unit apartment complex proposed for East Main Street that DePaul Community Services would like to build. The apartments would target veterans and their families as residents. A zoning change would be required and the property would become nonprofit owned. Councilman Al McGinnis shared the speakers' concerns about the project and objected to his conception that DePaul was looking to profit off of veterans, and that as a veteran he believed veterans wanted to live in houses and be part of the community. Apartments, he said, change the nature of the community. "This is a city of families," McGinnis told WBTA after the meeting. "Families are close-knit. Families live in houses. They become neighborhoods. I honestly think that too many apartments make for too many transients."
  • The City Council agreed to vote on a resolution at its business meeting to declare four submachine guns in the Police Department as surplus so they can be traded for rifles that Police Chief Shawn Heubusch said better meet the department's strategic needs.
  • The council also agreed to vote on a resolution at its next meeting to authorize spending $5,000 on a property appraisal on the former Wiard Plow Factory site on Swan Street. A city-appointed committee had recommended the site last fall as the best location for a new police headquarters, but property owner Tom Mancuso initially said he had other plans for the property. Just before the end of the year, he agreed to discuss a sale of the property to the city. The first step is getting an appraisal to determine fair market value, Molino said. If the owner was willing to sell at that price, the city would then need to complete an environmental review and title search before entering into a cost-analysis phase. With those details completed, the council then could consider whether to move foward with the project and complete the land purchase.
March 20, 2017 - 9:25am
posted by Howard B. Owens in GO ART!, arts, entertainment, news.

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Press release:

2017 marks the 30th year that GO ART! has proudly administered the New York State Council on the Arts’ Decentralization (DEC)  Regrant Program  in Genesee and Orleans counties. This program was initiated by the NYS Legislature to offer more artistic and cultural decision-making for state monies spent at a local level.

On March 2nd , GO ART! honored 24 grant recipients from across our two-county region. This year, 20 Reach Grants have been awarded to deserving nonprofits and local government entities who will provide cultural and artistic programming to benefit the local community. In addition, one Ripple Grant has been awarded to an individual artist to create a new work, and three Spark Grants (Arts in Education Grants) have been awarded to individual artists and nonprofit organizations, providing K-12 public school students and/or senior learners high-quality artistic learning experiences.                

With the honorees and GO ART! Board and staff, Sharon White representative of Stephen Hawley, Lynne Johnson, Vice Chairperson of Orleans County Legislature, John DeFillips, of Orleans County Legislature, and Gregg Torrey, of Genesee County Legislature, were treated to a vocal performance by the Genesee Chorale and local school music teachers, Lauren Picarro-Hoerbelt and Jennifer Neroni-Trupo.

 These are the 2017 DEC recipients:

 Orleans County

  • The Arc of Genesee Orleans, sponsored by Orleans County Chamber of Commerce (Open Mic & Art Show), $2,375
  • Lee-Whedon Memorial Library ("Finally Fridays!"), $2,800
  • Lyndonville Lions Club (Music Fun in the summer in Lyndonville), $3,800
  • Orleans County Chamber of Commerce (Traveling Towpath Troubadours: Bicentennial Celebration of the Erie Canal), $5,000
  • Village of Albion (Concerts on the Canal), $2,673
  • Village of Holley (Concerts at Canal Park), $1,000
  • World Life Institute Inc. (Voices from Earth: Pottery Experience in Orleans County), $4,908
  • Yates Community Library (More Than Just Books ),  $4,400

Genesee County

  • The Arc of Genesee Orleans (Art Show and Film Festival), $2,394
  • Batavia Concert Band (2017 Summer Concert Series), $4,250
  • Batavia Players (Summer Musical), $1,750
  • Byron-Bergen Public Library (Art and Music in the Community), $2,250
  • Genesee Chorale (Genesee Chorale 2017 Season), $4,000
  • Batavia Players (Spring After School Program), $1,427
  • Jill Pettigrew (NYS School for the Blind 150th Anniversary Permanent Ceramic Tie Mural), $3,559
  • Ted Canning sponsored by Genesee Symphony Orchestra (Steel Band Residency), $1,725
  • David Burke (Byron-Bergen Public Library Exterior Mural),  $2,500

If you enjoyed any of the events or public artwork created by the recipients, please note that the Decentralization Grant Program (DEC) is probably in danger of being cut or disseminated by Federal budget cuts that are being proposed. If you care about art and culture in your life at the grassroots level, let your legislators know that we need funding to continue to promote art and culture in our community.

March 16, 2017 - 8:30pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in arts, GO ART!, news.

The proposed federal spending plan released today by the Trump Administration cuts funding for the arts, which, as the Washington Post points out, will hit small rural communities, such as Batavia, the hardest.

The $148 million National Endowment for the Arts Budget -- 0.004 percent of the overall federal budget -- is funneled down the local level by the New York State Council on the Arts.

If cut, that funding will mean the elimination of grants for local arts groups, said Jennifer Gray, executive director of GO ART! She said there are 25 organizations and individuals in Genesee and Orleans counties who depend on those grants to provide arts events, about 70 a year, along with classes and programs that are enjoyed by more than 20,000 people throughout the two counties.

"If those programs are defunded, those programs will not happen," Gray said.

Early today, Rep. Chris Collins issued a press release expressing a couple of reservations about the Trump budget, particularly as it pertains to agriculture and the National Institute of Health, but did not address any other budget cuts, including eliminating the NEA. Twice today we emailed members of Collins staff requesting a comment on the topic from the Congressman and did not receive any response.

Elimination of arts programs could have far-reaching effects locally, including on education and business.

Steve Hyde, CEO of GCEDC, said he understands the balancing act the president must go through to arrive at a budget he believes is best for the country, but it's also true businesses are looking for communities where they might set up shop certainly take into consideration lifestyle issues for employees, which includes access to arts and entertainment opportunities.

Companies want to know that potential employees will want to move into a community that offers the lifestyle choices and amenities that attract top talent.

The arts, Hyde said, also play a key role in educating the future workforce.

"The arts help kids engage and it draws on those necessary critical thinking and creative thinking skills," Hyde said.

Gray also noted the potentially dire economic impacts of cutting arts funding.

"Our region will continue to become a cultural wasteland, which in turn drives away potential residents, potential property tax income, potential industry, the list goes on," Gray said. "We will be an area that supports methadone clinics before it supports the arts. Our children will have the options to get drug treatment over participating and thriving in the arts. The arts change lives, change regions, (it) lifts up the economy and drives tourism. Who wants to live in a region devoid of all that?"

Eliminating the NEA has been long been the goal of many social conservatives who not only say the NEA is wasteful spending, but that it also promotes artistic expression social conservatives find objectionable.

While the NEA is only a tiny portion of overall federal spending, the funds it disperses is also only about 1 percent of all the money spent on the arts in the United States. In smaller communities, though, where just as a matter of smaller populations, there are fewer people to support the arts and fewer rich patrons, the federal spending has a greater impact.

Gray doesn't know if defunding NEA will lead to the eventual demise of GO ART!, but even if it doesn't, she said, it will have a profound impact on the local arts community.

"Like all of Trump's policy's so far," Gray said, "it will devastate those people and organizations that need it the most. Poverty-stricken areas and low-income regions will further fall into the abyss of both cultural void and economic destitution."

DISCLOSURE: Howard Owens is on the board of directors of the Genesee Symphony Orchestra, which in the past has received grants from GO ART! that help fill budget gaps for the orchestra.

October 31, 2016 - 2:02pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Queen of the Arts, batavia, arts, GO ART!, news.

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Adults interested in trying out different kinds of art projects, different mediums, different techniques now have an outlet through Queen of the Arts, a new arts class business started by Jill Pettigrew.

Pettigrew moved to Batavia two years ago after being an art teacher (she has a master's degree in painting) at the public schools in Erie, Pa., and she missed teaching.

She thought adult art classes would help fill a need in the community. 

"I think it's really important for adults to have a creative outlet," Pettigrew said.

Classes are on Friday evenings at GO ART! and are $25 per session, which includes all supplies. Students are welcome to bring wine, snacks and other beverages.  

For more information, visit the Queen of the Arts page on the GO ART! website.

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