More Art Upstairs Screening, New Port Theater, Corona Del Mar, CA Tuesday, March 27, 2018
On Tuesday, March 27, 2018 Fieldstead and Company sponsored a special screening of the documentary film More Art Upstairs at the New Port Theater in Corona del Mar, CA. The film, produced and directed by Jody Hassett Sanchez, calls into question the role of art in our lives, explores the conversations that are elicited as a result of the contemplation of art and denotes the varying reactions of community members to the development of art spaces in their midst; all amid the backdrop of ArtPrize, a vast, independently organized international art competition which takes place for 19 days each fall in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Featuring working artists Judith Braun, Nick Kline, Marissa Voytenko, Leah Smith, Michael Townsend, Kevin Buist, Michael Rakowitz, writer and journalist Robin Cembalist, curator Sarah Urist Green, curator Lisa Freiman, curator Justine Ludwig and curator Dan Cameron.
From the production’s website: “For three weeks in September, beer-fueled debates in the bars of one Michigan town aren’t about sports and politics but art. Hundreds of thousands of people come to Grand Rapids to engage with blue-chip artists in ways that rarely happen at Art Basel or other established art events, unless you’re a major collector or critic.
More Art Upstairs follows four accomplished artists as they compete at ArtPrize, a populist experiment that’s challenging the art world’s hierarchy by giving the public the power to decide which art will win almost half the $500,000 in prize money.
What attracts our artists is the chance to win this public vote, but also to gain exposure to some of the country’s top art critics, who dash into town to select which art will win the rest of the prize money. Local bistros, bars and abandoned buildings showcase the work – more than 1500 creations – and our artists are compelled to be outgoing. They stand next to their art all day, talking to people who are often experiencing contemporary art for the first time.
With unmatched access to artists, organizers, jurors and visitors, our film captures the entire wild ride of this competition. The result – a thoughtful yet exuberant experience about this curious confluence of paintings, populism and the notion that art can express something important about what it means to be human.