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ArtPrize and Project 1 - Grand Rapids


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I hope the businesses (non-venues) don't keep closing at or before 10 pm for the duration of ArtPrize. I was starving after leaving ActiveSite around 10:30 and NOWHERE was open. I'm almost never one to complain, but I don't get the logic as a business owner. Perhaps they had no clue that so many people would be downtown.

Yeah, I don't get it either. We decided to try Parsley's last night. We'll be sticking to Sami's.

The time on our receipt was 7:41pm. We received our chicken schwarma wrap and bowl of soup at 8:07, only 26 minutes later. The wrap was good, especially the garlic sauce, but the soup was just okay. They only had 3 employees back there and 1 of them appeared to be standing around most of the time, staring at the meat cooking or disappearing into the back and another appeared to be working hard, but was pretty slow at putting everything together.

They closed right at 8:30 as we were leaving, despite the fact that people were still coming in regularly and ordering food at 8:20.

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I hope so. If the city is really committed to being an Art Destination, it could do wonders to have some interesting, large scale art installations.

I thought it was interesting to see that Switch is a leadership sponsor for ArtPrize.....That's a minimum sponsorship of $100k.

I still wish they would move away from the classic square boundaries of the competition. There is just too much of the west side, Medical Mile, and N. Monroe that are part of it, when there are t

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Went downtown last night. I loved the crowds this guy attracted all over the place (though it doesn't seem evident in this picture, there were many groups of people following it, trying to get a glimpse of the man controlling it).

I could tell many drivers were upset that this was randomly walking in the middle of the road. At moments, he would stop and and parallel park. It was quite entertaining.

post-8564-1253813892_thumb.jpg

Edited by Timize
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Went downtown last night. I loved the crowds this guy attracted all over the place (though it doesn't seem evident in this picture, there were many groups of people following it, trying to get a glimpse of the man controlling it).

I could tell many drivers were upset that this was randomly walking in the middle of the road. At moments, he would stop and and parallel park. It was quite entertaining.

post-8564-1253813892_thumb.jpg

He was headed to UICA, where this item and the small balloon insect piece staged a battle in the street.

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Oh wow! I didn't know that. Is this a daily battle event or am I doomed to youtube?

Jimmy (red thing) is based at Old GRAM/Federal Building, and he does walkabouts. Today he asked me how to get to RPC and the Blue Bridge (I was wrangling students for Art-ucation Day). Later I was sitting in the front window of Johnny's Pita and saw him come bouncing down the walk by GRAM (the new one). Got a pic or two of the big red ball on the stage and this inflatable deal thing.

The insects are based at UICA. Last night was an opening night party there, and Jimmy showed up. (The, um, structure has a "vote for me" banner on the side.) Insect Guy took a look out the window, set down his beer, jumped into the phallic costume, and ran outside.

There were many photos documenting this. But there will be more fun occurrences. We've got a whole two weeks!

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Saw Rick DeVos while walking through DeVos Place with his wife. Talked with him about maybe setting up a foundation or something to keep some of the art in Grand Rapids. I think he wants to wait and see what happens after this first year. He sure is a down to earth, easy to talk with person. His wife is just as great!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/johne777/3951...57622047180028/

~John

http://twitter.com/johnegr

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Saw Rick DeVos while walking through DeVos Place with his wife. Talked with him about maybe setting up a foundation or something to keep some of the art in Grand Rapids. I think he wants to wait and see what happens after this first year. He sure is a down to earth, easy to talk with person. His wife is just as great!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/johne777/3951...57622047180028/

~John

http://twitter.com/johnegr

I agree that he's pretty easy to talk to. I asked him to pose in my pedicab photo booth when he was walking by on Park(ing) Day last Friday and he said "Well, I gotta be somewhere, but I'll do it really quickly." I just told him how much I was looking forward to ArtPrize and thanked him, along with a couple of other things. Here was the result.

3941427786_6eedeb32d3_b.jpg

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Paper Airplanes over Monroe was hit or miss depending where you were. By the museum it was a bit of a drag. Once I got closer to Monroe, it was incredible. However, I dont think this is how they hoped it would turn out.

However #2 It got a ton of folks to come down on a Sunday of all days, and pack DT like...I dont know like what. I've never seen this type of crowd ever! And completely spread out all throughout the DT area. It didn't mater if it was by the 6th street bridge, S. Division, or in Heritage Hill, it was just epic what this has done. And I'm sure those businesses that thought they would be "cool" and close on Sunday are kicking themselves... *cough*Grand Central Market *cough*

Cancel Festival of the Arts, and just have Art Prize with some stage acts!

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From my point of view (Ottawa and Fulton Parking Ramp) the "event" was a dud. Couldn't hear the medly and the paper airplane launches were, um lame. About 10 minutes after the start I saw people leaving in droves.

On the upside it was totally awesome seeing the huge crowd of people and seeing them go to other venues. ArtPrize and all the events and activities working together to bring people together is totally awesome!

ArtPrize is WAY better than all the festivals put together. As Rick DeVos has learned and desired to change with ArtPrize is that art by itself is lame, personal and inactive. With ArtPrize people are a part of the art and the whole "event" is interactive. Been to many festivals and felt very alone in the large crowds. With ArtPrize I engaged with people like NEVER before. ArtPrize is no art showcase or exibit, ArtPrize is people interacting with art and people making it an experience that could not be lived another way like this has and is doing.

Another venue that was a dud (FOR ME) was Tanglefoot. To me it was just a bar with lousy art that I climbed four flights of stairs to waste my time with. Not at all my cup of tea. Not to mention the walk there.

The "Glass Sail" building on Ionia at Oaks, Mel Trotters and Betheham Lutheran on Commerce has some great art.

~John

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I think that this event was about what I was picturing it would be, except with about 5-10 times more people. It certainly helped that the weather was perfect, and that the feedback on ArtPrize has been great (even on WZZM's website, there are only a couple of negative comments, which is simply amazing).

It was fantastic being part of the HUGE crowd, like nothing I've ever seen before in Grand Rapids. It was great to see all the kids out, everyone having tons of fun. Was the launch of the airplanes amazing? Not really, but I thought it was still pretty cool, and the point of Bliss' "events" are as much about people gathering together as what is actually happening. All the naysayers who were wondering "who's going to clean all that up?" I don't think you could find a single plane on the ground. And you could see kids trying to grab as many as they could, or trying to collect one of each color. I didn't see a single kid who wasn't ecstatic about paper airplanes falling from the sky.

The "melodies" part wasn't dominant, but I was down near Pearl and Monroe and there as a guy on a ladder conducting and singing and there were lots of people of all ages with instruments who were play along and there were definitely people singing. They needed about 10 more of that guy all up and down Monroe. To say that it was a dud because you couldn't hear the singing at Ottawa and Fulton? I disagree.

I call the event a HUGE success! The thing that was most disappointing to me was all of the businesses on Monroe Center that were closed, both restaurants and retail. Every single restaurant was PACKED. Parsley's had a line out the door. Even venues that I didn't know had very much art, like the Waters Building (3 floors of displays in the lobby areas), were packed with people.

I'll post some of my photos when they are done uploading. I'm looking forward to the official video and will probably spend some time on YouTube trying to find some other videos tomorrow.

I've been a huge fan of ArtPrize for awhile now, but it's far exceeded my high expectations. It's been AMAZING so far, and I've still only seen a small portion of all the art!

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I agree with the merchants. Why would people pass up such a great opportunity?! Thousands of people wandering around and needing places to eat. Seems really short-sighted to me.

Personally, I thought the paper airplane event was horrible. I give him a lot of cred for trying such a massive event, and it did bring people out in droves, but the airplanes dropped from the tarps like dead birds, and the long delays between launches seemed to confuse the crowd. Like the fact he "went big", but the execution definitely didn't live up to the hype.

All-in-all, Art Prize is incredible. I'm need to take a long lunch each day this week to pack in more art. I spent a day and a half downtown and I feel like I've missed a ton still.

Joe

I think that this event was about what I was picturing it would be, except with about 5-10 times more people. It certainly helped that the weather was perfect, and that the feedback on ArtPrize has been great (even on WZZM's website, there are only a couple of negative comments, which is simply amazing).

It was fantastic being part of the HUGE crowd, like nothing I've ever seen before in Grand Rapids. It was great to see all the kids out, everyone having tons of fun. Was the launch of the airplanes amazing? Not really, but I thought it was still pretty cool, and the point of Bliss' "events" are as much about people gathering together as what is actually happening. All the naysayers who were wondering "who's going to clean all that up?" I don't think you could find a single plane on the ground. And you could see kids trying to grab as many as they could, or trying to collect one of each color. I didn't see a single kid who wasn't ecstatic about paper airplanes falling from the sky.

The "melodies" part wasn't dominant, but I was down near Pearl and Monroe and there as a guy on a ladder conducting and singing and there were lots of people of all ages with instruments who were play along and there were definitely people singing. They needed about 10 more of that guy all up and down Monroe. To say that it was a dud because you couldn't hear the singing at Ottawa and Fulton? I disagree.

I call the event a HUGE success! The thing that was most disappointing to me was all of the businesses on Monroe Center that were closed, both restaurants and retail. Every single restaurant was PACKED. Parsley's had a line out the door. Even venues that I didn't know had very much art, like the Waters Building (3 floors of displays in the lobby areas), were packed with people.

I'll post some of my photos when they are done uploading. I'm looking forward to the official video and will probably spend some time on YouTube trying to find some other videos tomorrow.

I've been a huge fan of ArtPrize for awhile now, but it's far exceeded my high expectations. It's been AMAZING so far, and I've still only seen a small portion of all the art!

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I walked by Grand Central Market around 5:30-6:00pm on Saturday evening and they were closed as well. Even if they just sold enough to pay their staff (which I don't think would have been the case), the added exposure would have been well worth it...

Joe

And I'm sure those businesses that thought they would be "cool" and close on Sunday are kicking themselves... *cough*Grand Central Market *cough*
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ArtPrize randoms

--I'm feeling the pain for any event promoter who stumbled upon this weekend. Several interesting local possibilities that I might have attended, were it not for all the activity happening right DT.

--That goes for U-M homecoming, too. (I hated to leave for it on Friday.)

--My voting strategy: I must have viewed the piece in order to vote on it. Dang, I had better get cracking; about 1,000 items yet to see!

--If the artwork depicts or includes non-motorized transportation, it gets my "up." That goes for the peace thing at the B.O.B., one of which is a decorated trike:

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--The peace signs are working their way towards the ArtPeers 'hood. One of them is now in the triangular park at Lake Dr and Fulton.

--My sister, who ordinarily wouldn't come over here for any reason, listened to NPR this morning (all about ArtPrize). She put her bike on the car and drove over from Lansing to see some stuff. I used her as a horn stand while checking out a venue:

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--Pretty interesting seeing the various vote-collecting methods. The "Dubya a la TP rolls" guy is giving out toilet paper.

These are Post-it notes stamped with the pertinent details:

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--Best Ever Use of Plastic Army Guys: the tornado at Fountain Street Church.

--Next Best: this peace-ful item at the B.O.B.

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--I love wearing the big red T-shirt. Today's questions:

"Where's the McKay building?" (asked at Monroe & Monroe Center)

"Is Nessie by the Fish Ladder?" (same location)

"Where's the nearest shuttle stop, and why won't it stop when I raise my wristbanded hand?"

"Will I become wealthy?"

Edited by Veloise
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  • GRDadof3 changed the title to ArtPrize and Project 1 - Grand Rapids

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