It was a radical concept for its time in the early 1930s: create a graduate art school program without grades, classes, degrees or even teachers.

When the Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills was created nearly 90 years ago, it shunned the idea of learning from traditional professors. Instead, artists would teach other artists.

Today, the academy, founded in 1932, still operates with that same sense of hands-on instruction (though degrees are now awarded). Now, a new exhibition at the Cranbrook Art Museum pays homage to the artists and works that that unusual approach helped create.

“With Eyes Opened: Cranbrook Academy of Art since 1932” at the Cranbrook Art Museum opens to the general public Sunday and runs through Sept. 19, featuring more than 275 pieces from 225 Cranbrook Academy of Art artists, faculty and alumni.

It represents all of the academy’s programs of study, including architecture, ceramics, design,

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VALDOSTA – Shut-in during quarantine last year, Dr. Stephen Lahr chose to utilize his time creatively.

The abstract mixed-media artist put color on a canvas and went to work, making a number of art pieces that will be seen in an upcoming show at the Annette Howell Turner Center for the Arts.

He calls the collection his “COVID series,” though not all of the artwork was completed during quarantine.

“The work in this show spans my working period from the late 1960s to this past year. It is a retrospective to some degree – about half the works were done over a long span of time and the other pieces have been done in the last two years,” Lahr said.

“Actually, the new pieces were done during the COVID (pandemic), but that didn’t influence any of the pieces; it just gave me time to produce these pieces.”

To be featured

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We’ve seen some interesting ways of paying for cars come up in the past few years, from subscriptions to cryptocurrency. But Polestar is going to try something particularly unusual: accepting payment in the form of art. The program will run from now until August 15 in the U.S. and Europe, and it only applies to the Polestar 1 sports car.

Almost any kind of art can be used to purchase a Polestar 1: “paintings, sculptures, photography, installations and more.” But before you run to your hobby store for a canvas and paint, know that there are a couple of hurdles to clear before Polestar accepts your piece. First it has to pass a preliminary evaluation from art advisor Theodor Dalenson, who has been on the board of multiple art museums, including the Guggenheim. After that, the piece will be valued by the Sotheby’s and Philips auction

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Arts advocate Patrick Moore of Montevideo was inspired by Nicole Zempel’s nature photography currently on display at the Southwest Minnesota Arts Council’s gallery in Marshall.

Zempel’s up-close photographs of mushrooms, lichen, moss, and slime mold blend science and art in a way that is both familiar and otherworldly.

“I just kind of get blown away by these photos,” said Moore. “I can’t believe that these are real, that this is something that you will find within 10 miles of my house. She has an exceptional eye.”

A closeup shot of slime mold spores taken by Nicole Zempel.

A close-up shot of slime mold spores taken by Nicole Zempel.

Courtesy of Nicole Zempel | Southwest Minnesota Arts Council

The exhibit runs through June 25, with a virtual tour available on YouTube.


Theater director Addie Gorlin-Han recently attended Fawzia Khan’s “Becoming Visible” exhibit at Hopkins Center for the Arts. Khan received a 2020 Minnesota Artist Initiative Grant to interview 12 Minnesota

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