Art Opening, Fri. July 12th in Philadelphia

The next William Way LGBTQ Community Center art exhibition will be “Queer-Americans: Who We Are” with art from Kelly McQuain, Amy Martin, and the artist known as alkotó. The opening reception will be Friday July 12th, 6-8 pm and the show runs through August 30th at 1315 Spruce Street, Phila. PA 19107. Amy Martin’s paintings and drawings unapologetically declare her Queer femme vision. alkotó creates multi-layer abstract paintings arising out of an inclusive process of discovery and invention. Kelly McQuain presents painted narratives addressing our hopes and despair about our relationships with technology, nature, and each other. McQuain, Martin, and alkotó were awarded this July’s exhibition as well as a cash jury prize last fall for their submissions to the LGBT center’s annual community group show.

More at
https://www.broadstreetreview.com/wnwn/art-and-identity-in-queer-america

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City Hall Art Opening, May 15, 2019

Faun in a Field of Flowers [detail] – watercolor

Dear Friends: Free art opening at City Hall this week! I have a piece in the show. Wednesday evening May 15th. Please come if you can after work. Here are the details on the show, called Visual Democracy, with the theme inspired by Walt Whitman as part of Literary Arts Week in Philadelphia.

“Join us in celebrating Literary Arts Week in Philadelphia by recognizing the Rittenhouse Writers Group, Mighty Writers, Philadelphia Young Playwrights and Blue Stoop – Philadelphia organizations supporting local emerging writers. Festivities will include a reception, a poetry reading by a special guest, and the opening of Visual Democracy, an Art in City Hall exhibit that celebrates the connection between the literary and visual arts as part of Whitman at 200: Art and Democracy.”

#Whitmanat200 #Whitman200

Wednesday, May 15, 2019
City Hall Philadelphia

Ceremony
Mayor’s Reception Room, 202
5:30-6:00 p.m.
Reception
Conversation Hall, Room 201
6:00-7:00 p.m.
Visual Democracy Exhibit Opening
Room 116
6:00-7:00 p.m.
This event is free and open to the public. Registration is required.

#LitArtsPHL

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/literary-arts-week-in-philadelphia-tickets-60065903735?aff=efbeventtix&fbclid=IwAR2ulwwilshzjJMKIjMRizLpYIxGW-1-kPM-DPGuociYJcRiwltCuDv_nTw

This event is part of Whitman at 200  https://www.whitmanat200.org/

Art Update – Jury Prize Win!

12/7/2018 – UPDATE! My painting, “Well, hello there!” won the jury prize at the William Way LGBTQ Center group show. This means that I and two other winners will have a combined show during summer 2019. We each get a wall in the giant parlor that greets visitors to the center, and I plan to fill mine up with new paintings that combine images and text! There is still time to see the piece below in the current group show, which is up until December 28th. There are numerous works for sale at the Center, so why not give someone a little queer art this holiday season? Stop by. Entry is FREE. William Way LGBT Community Center, 1315 Spruce St, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19107.

FullSizeRender

“Well, hello there!”  by Kelly McQuain, 2018.Watercolor and mixed media.

 

Too Bad for Cats

LifeboatRobot

Did you ever play that game Lifeboat, where you have one lifeboat and you have to decide who gets to jump into it? You know, priest vs. pregnant mother vs. sailor vs. rich banker vs. yadda, yadda, yadda?

There’s a similar thing called the trolley problem in situational ethics. Well, MIT is working on a database to help self-driving cars play their own version of the who-to-save game. It makes one wonder how we’ll program (teach?) all sorts of machines we will come to rely on, and how those machines in turn will have to program (teach?) ethics to that which they create. On and on… Our ethical codes are handed down to us via our myths and stories, philosophies and laws, traditions and taboos. However, the idealism they aspire toward is often left unexercised in everyday practice. Will AI face that same conundrum? In the article on the project at The Economist we learn that, sadly, cats don’t so well in this process. Not sure about kittens.

Hitchcock made a movie called Lifeboat based on a script by John Steinbeck and featuring the lovely Tallaullah Bankhead. Maybe we need a new version of Lifeboat now that we have ruined the planet. A movie featuring the Terminator, C3PO, The Jetsons’ Rosie, a Dalek and the Lost in Space robot. Maybe they should decide if we humans are worthy of shooting into the stars.

 

Lifeboat2

#RobotEthics

https://www.economist.com/science-and-technology/2018/10/27/whom-should-self-driving-cars-protect-in-an-accident

http://moralmachine.mit.edu/

Art Opening Nov. 9, 6-8 pm

Hey, Philly friends–

I have new artwork in a group show at the William Way Center. Come if you can to the opening Friday, Nov. 9th around happy hour. Here are the details:

November 9, 6-8pm: Art Opening – 13th ANNUAL JURIED ART EXHIBITION. William Way LGBT Community Center, 1315 Spruce St, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19107. You’re invited to the opening reception of the I hope you can make it to see the latest edition of dynamic Queer-American art in Philadelphia. Plenty of food & drinks. Lots of fun. Support the LGBTQ Community Center!

 

 

WllliamWay13

 

Barnes Update! Top 20

#LetsConnectPhilly #Art #PhillyArtDepot

Update! Recently  I wrote about the Let’s Connect! art show at Philadelphia’s famed Barnes Collection. My hipster postman mixed-media painting, “Mind, Heart, Soul” placed among the top 20 artworks out of over 310 paintings at the show. I was especially happy to see my friend Tim Barton also make the cut with his stellar wooden folk box. As a result, this coming year the other artists and I have been asked to work with the Barnes on a series of talks and lectures geared toward the public and fellow artists. It’s a very special piece to me, and I hope it will find a good home with you. (You can read more in this former post that includes my Artist Statement., which talks about how Van Gogh’s work served as inspiration.)

image1

“Mind, Heart, Soul: After Vincent’s The Postman” by Kelly McQuain, 2018

On this blog I’ve mostly posted about my work as a writer, but it’s true I also do a lot of artwork, which I’m hoping to post more about in the future. Below is my current Artist’s Bio, in case you are curious. My artwork ranges from comics and cartoons to watercolors, acrylic and the occasional oil painting. I often mix media and like to embed details and back-stories within my visual work, things that a viewer has to look twice to discover and that leave a person wanting to know more. For instance, if you look close you can tell Mr. Postman is a major Eagles fan, but perhaps not the most attentive deliveryman. I take the occasional commission and book cover project, but most works start from a strong visual idea and spool out from there, with hopes they find a buyer in the future.

About the Artist

Kelly McQuain is an artist and poet who combines words and pictures in poems, essays, book covers, comics, and large-scale canvases. His collection, Velvet Rodeo, won the Bloom Poetry Prize, and his work appears in numerous journals. He has twice held Fellowships from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. Recent projects include a series of Poetry Portraits that have appeared on the cover of Fjords Review. The painting series was inspired by Barnes artist Charles Demuth, whose watercolor poster portraits of famous contemporaries included the likes of Georgia O’Keeffe and William Carlos Williams. When he’s not painting, McQuain teaches creative writing, literature, and film studies at Community College of Philadelphia.