When was the TRANS-CEN-DER Art Group (TAG) founded and how did it get started?For three years, Christopher Stout of ADO Project ran a very similar group called Bushwick Arts Critique Group (BCAG). And in that time, the three of us (TAG co-founders Sharilyn Neidhardt, Meer Musa & Tim Gowan) all attended and/or presented at some point and found it extremely enriching. Then came the time where Christopher decided to stop BCAG and focus on running a gallery. Sharilyn started bugging Christopher about re-starting the group, and eventually he relented and handed over the reins to Sharilyn under the condition that it’s called something different.
At that point, Sharilyn quickly realized that she needed help to get started and Christopher put her in touch with Meer and Tim who both also asked about getting the group going again. We had our first meeting in November 2016 where we shared our common creative vision in serving the artistic community, and in January 2017, we hosted our first monthly slide share.
I think it important to say that TAG would not be possible if we did not have the tremendous support from Burr Dodd and Colin Radcliffe of Brooklyn Firepoof in freely providing us the resources to host these amazing events.
What is the main purpose of the group?
TAG is a networking and creative development community providing artists a supportive place to share work, receive feedback and form creative opinions. The primary vehicle to carry this vision is through our monthly slide share but is now expanding to include exhibits and workshops.
Our goal is to support, strengthen, and enjoy the fellowship of artists. Membership is open to anyone who loves art and there are no fees associated with TAG.
How many artists do you currently show per month? Has that number grown since TAG started?
It’s an open number, but we mainly keep it to about 6 artists per session. But this number does fluctuate depending on who’s hosting the event but it’s never more than 7 people.
Do you feel your monthly lecture series has been beneficial to your members?Do you feel they’ve become better artists or learned anything new from doing their presentations at TAG?
We feel it helps artists become more outspoken about their creative passion. As artists, we are often introverts, when we are working away in our studio space or in the comfort of our home. TAG gives a chance for artists to share their creative vision with a room full of artists and supportive audience. We personally feel that each presenter inspires everyone in the room to stay motivated and to continue creating art.
We feel artists can always learn something new that they were not aware of from their fellow artist friends. The shared insight helps artists try out new ways to make art or experiment on their own. Many artists share their common interests and challenges they face in their everyday life, with art as a language of expression. With this shared expression, we feel more connected than we are alone.
Tell me about your upcoming show Transcendence of Us which will take place during Bushwick Open Studios (BOS) from September 22nd – 24th. What should we expect to see at the show?
Tim Gowan & I am very excited to curate our first exhibition for Trans-cen-der Art Group, Titled: “Transcendence of Us” during Bushwick Open Studios 2017. We had an invitation to apply for a gallery space courtesy of our friends at Brooklyn Fireproof, Thomas Burr Dodd and Colin Radcliffe and Judy. After applying we got selected to host at “Gallery 104” location inside Brooklyn Fire Proof. Soon after that, I registered with Arts in Bushwick website to put us on the map for BOS 2017. The artists selected, are previous presenters with (TAG). The exhibition will include a diverse selection of artists and their artworks. Mainly, paintings and sculptures.
Which artists will be participating in the show for BOS? How did you decide on what artists to show?
The flowing artists are exhibiting: Ethan Boisvert, Susan Carr, Thomas Burr Dodd, Danielle Draik, Gordon Fearey, Abby Goodman, Tim Gowan, Leah Harper, Clinton King, Annesta Le, Jamie Martinez, Nao Matsumoto, Seren Morey, Meer Musa, Sharilyn Neidhardt, Colin Radcliffe, Nicolas Rispoli, Seth Ruggles Hiler, Mike Serafino and Kurt Steger.
Selecting the artists was difficult because we had a long list of amazing artists from our monthly slide share events and ideally, we wanted to have all of them participate. But there’s only so much space available. So, left it to chance and pulled names out of a hat. We know it’s not a glamorous format but we felt it was the fairest way.
Are there any special events or talks during BOS that you are looking forward to?
Yes, there are!
First, on Friday, September 22nd 6 PM to 9 PM, we are hosting the opening reception for the “Transcendence of Us” group show in Gallery 104, on the ground floor of Brooklyn Fire Proof 119 Ingraham Street, Brooklyn. There will be refreshments, and light snacks for all to enjoy, generosity of participating artists. We look forward to see many of you then. For more info, here’s the link: http://bit.ly/2hbDhDq.
On Sunday, September 24th from 3 PM to 4 PM, Meer Musa will host and lead an introductory silent meditation session/workshop for artists, where he will guide individuals how to calm their mind and reset from excessive thinking to make headspace for creativity. After the meditation, participants can discuss anything related to the benefits of meditation practice and art. We hope those who are curious or loves meditation will join. You can find the event page on our Trans-cen-der Art Group’s Facebook page: http://bit.ly/2w47A1g.
Then, After the meditation, artist and former paint maker and TAG Co-founder Sharilyn Neidhardt will host “Art Materials – Ask Me Anything” from 4 to 5pm, where she will answer your pressing questions about art materials and talk about how technical innovations in materials have affected art history and how you can make work that will stand the test of time without killing yourself.
Finally, on 6PM that Sunday, we close up shop and are are planning to attend the BOS closing party starting 9PM at House of YES, located 2 Wyckoff Avenue in Brooklyn!
What is next for TRANS-CEN-DER Art Group (TAG)?
Meer Musa just hosted the September monthly artist talk/slide-share on Tuesday, September 19th from 7 pm to 8:30 PM, which took place inside Gallery 104 at Brooklyn Fireproof with fellow co-hosts Sharilyn Neidhardt and Tim Gowan. The artists that presented included Meg Hitchcock, Nicholas Rispoli, Sophia Chizuco, Kay Sirikul Pattachote, David Meanix and Leah Harper.
Then on October 13th 2017, we are curating an exhibit titled “Transparency” a show on artists’ meditations on seeing through. The show will take place in “The Cases” at Brooklyn Fire Proof. The details to the show are in progress and will include several TAG presenters and friends. Link http://bit.ly/2f5emNE
Finally, on October 24th, Tim Gowan will be hosting the TAG October slide-share at the same location. Link http://bit.ly/2ftXY9R
And after that…stay tuned…more will be revealed!