Upstart Annapolis Summer 2018

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410.544.5448 | 7 0 0 M i l l C r e e k R oa d A r n o l d , M a r y l a n d 2 1 0 1 2



Issue 2

Good Luck with Hammers & Saws By Julia Gibb



WAVES Beautiful Life Bumpin Uglies By Theresa C. Sanchez



Visual Narratives


Made with Love


Arts on Fire


Music to Your Mouth


CONTENTS 6 | Summer 2018

Volume 5


By Christine Fillat

FORM By Melissa Lauren


By Emmy Nicklin



Ila (2017) by Walker Babington. Magnifying glass and sunlight on wood pallet.

By David O'Higgins



Artisanship & Well-Crafted Signs By Desiree Smith-Daughety




Art as Nourishment By Brenda Wintrode


(Re)Creating the Gallery


Unfettered Hope

By Leah Weiss




SU M M ER 2 0 1 8

Charting a Course By Theresa C. Sanchez

By Katherine Matuszak



The I.W.S.A.(Inner West Street Association) & the Annapolis Arts District Calendar

Editor’s Inkwell

Publisher’s Note


ey Everyone! We’re doing something we’ve never done before. A video contest! We invite you to participate in Up.St.ART Annapolis’ first short video contest called “New Beginnings.” Create a video that is five minutes or less in the theme of “New Beginnings.” Your video can take any form, including, but not limited to, compilation, short movie, documentary, Vlog, or interview. The contest is open to everyone. So, pull out your phone or HD camera and get shooting! You don’t need to be a professional filmmaker to play. Winner will receive recognition in the fall 2018 issue of Up.St.ART Annapolis and the video will be posted on our website, social media, and announced at our fall launch party in October. Winner will also receive an Up.St.ART Annapolis t-shirt and earn a lunch with our publisher, Jimi Davies. Okay, that last one may seem like a boobie prize but that’s what we’ve got. Videos will be judged by Christian Smooth of Smooth House Productions and JR Mitchell of Haymaker Media. Deadline for submissions is August 30, 2018. Please send video links with your full name, address, phone number, and email address to For complete rules, please visit:

Jimi Davies | 7



Publisher & Creative Director Jimi Davies Editorial Director Andrea Stuart Copy Editor Leah Weiss Associate Editors Michele Callaghan Jenny Igoe MacDuff Perkins Contributing Editors Christine Fillat Julia Gibb Melissa Lauren Katherine Matuszak Emmy Nicklin David O’Higgins Theresa C. Sanchez Desiree Smith-Daughety Leah Weiss Brenda Wintrode

Art Director Cory Deere Contributing Photographers John Bildahl Gregg Patrick Boersma David Burroughs Karen Davies Alison Harbaugh Advertising Jimi Davies Kim O’Brien Melissa Lauren Chris Costello

SUBMISSIONS: For article submissions, email proposal to Up.St.Art Annapolis Magazine is published quarterly. Subscription rate: $40, payable in advance. Single copies $10. Back issues, if available, $15 (includes shipping and handling). For subscriptions and all other inquires, send an email to or call 410-212-4242. Entire contents © 2018 by Up.St.Art Annapolis MagazineTM unless otherwise noted on specific articles. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part is strictly prohibited without Publisher permission.

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Christine Fillat

Julia Gibb

David O’Higgins

Katherine Matuszak

Emmy Nicklin

Leah Weiss

Desiree Smith-Daughety

Theresa C. Sanchez

Brenda Wintrode

Melissa Lauren


Karen Davies

John Bildahl

Gregg Patrick Boersma

Alison Harbaugh

David Burroughs | 11


12 | Summer 2018

Good Luckwith Hammers & Saws by JULIA GIBB


urn, melt, drip, spit, rust, scrape, gouge, grind, tarnish—these are the actions that give life to Walker Babington’s “creatively destructive” art. Discarded and distressed materials have always drawn the artist’s eye. Scrapyard metal selectively scraped and ground with tools rusts into a portrait. A piling encrusted with barnacles begs the artist to abrade until a face emerges from the negative space. Babington has even set himself afire, becoming a flaming human paintbrush to create his piece Fire Angel. While Breathing fire. Photo by Rich Wysockey. | 13

Fire Angel (2014). Babington's body in flames, scorching a "fire angel" into a panel of reclaimed wood.

ablaze, the artist mimicked the actions of a child making a snow angel while lying facedown under a panel of salvaged wood, burning a human image into it. Babington’s gift for seeing the artistic potential in abandoned odds and ends began with what he called his childhood “yunk collection.” Everywhere the young artist went, he collected scraps of wood, metal, hardware, and other discarded treasures. Out of this detritus came the creation of one of his first sculptures, Happy Citizen. Assembled by Babington when he was in fifth grade, the wall sculpture looks like a small robot wearing a police badge. He created it as a garage talisman to

Walker and daughter Willa at the levee. Photo by Pieter Gasperz.

14 | Summer 2018

bring his father good luck with hammers and saws. Despite losing an eyeball somewhere along the way, the little robot still keeps watch over the Babington garage. While pursuing a photography degree at University of Maryland Baltimore County, Babington discovered that he liked to recreate his photographic subjects using a blowtorch or a magnifying glass to burn images—often portraits— onto reclaimed wooden doors, tables, and pallets. He dubbed this process torchtraiture. After traveling internationally, creating and selling art and continuing to add new processes and materials to his arsenal, Babington combined his love of fire with his proclivity for risk taking and attended the United Stuntmen’s Association International Stunt School in Seattle, Washington. His stunt résumé lists, among other skills, “Armed combat—club and dagger,” “Japanese pole,” and “Walking on hands (can go up stairs).” Learning the proper way to execute stunts made Babington a more responsible performer. His training led to work in advertisements, music videos, and feature films. He acted as Sam Rockwell’s stunt double in Better Living through Chemistry, filmed in Annapolis, and had speaking roles in The Magnif icent Seven and Strange Weather. Currently living in New Orleans, Babington and his wife, filmmaker and screenwriter Shana Betz, are frequent artistic collaborators. They also became first-time parents last fall, necessitating significant changes in their schedules and lifestyle. “You can imagine how many sharp

Above: Kaleidoshack (2017) commissioned by the Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival. Right: Faraday (2018) by Walker Babington. Liver of sulfur, ammonium chloride, cupric sulfate, and sodium bicarbonate on copper, 42"x 56". Far Right: Mt. VarĂŠ (2018) by Walker Babginton. Liver of sulfur, ammonium chloride, cupric sulfate, and sodium bicarbonate on copper, 42"x56". | 15

objects I normally have lying around,” he jokes. Between acting, stunt gigs, and changing diapers, Babington sells his art in New Orleans’ Jackson Square, where artists have been producing and selling art for close to a century. There, spectators watch Babington create his heliography. He also makes large-scale fire murals using a blowtorch on wood. Some of these murals are installed at the Catahoula Hotel and the St. Claude Art Garage, both in New Orleans. He feels an imperative to explore and create processes involving new materials. Wielding a blowtorch and chemicals with fantastical names such as Liver of Sulphur, Babington is learning to selectively patinate images onto brass, bronze, and copper. “This process . . . creates a wild green flame that looks like some kinda Harry Potter sh--.” Consulting with an architect and an engineer to ensure his creations’ structural integrity, Babington is also pushing himself to go big with his sculptural work. He is developing three-dimensional pieces that he hopes to see come to fruition in New Orleans and Annapolis. A recent near-death experience served not only as an acute reminder of Babington’s new parental responsibilities but also jolted him out of a creative comfort zone. But adulthood has not dulled Babington’s ability to see the world with childlike wonder. His unusual perspective and sense of playfulness is

Marshall (2015) by Walker Babington. Rusted panel from back of metal shelf.

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infectious. Annapolis-based photographer and filmmaker Alison Harbaugh, who has worked with Babington on several projects, says, “Working with him brings out this childlike spirit of creativity that so many of us tend to squash . . . collaborating with someone who approaches each project with limitless possibilities and enthusiasm is so refreshing.” She notes that Babington also served as ringmaster for Harbaugh’s 1920s-style circusthemed wedding. Jonathan Stone, a local musician, muses, “As long as people like [Babington] exist, it seems like getting a real alien decoder ring in your Cracker Jack® box is still inside the realm of possibility.” █ Explore Babington’s artistic endeavors at

Burning of the Baba Yaga Hut (2015) by Walker Babington. Mixed reclaimed materials Southern Louisiana-fire. 10'L x 6'w x 20'h.

Trixie by Walker Babginton. Burnt wood and tarnished copper, commissioned by The Catahoula Hotel in New Orleans, LA. 8' x 32'.


Skerling (2007) by Walker Babington. Griptape on skate decks. | 17

RISE TO NEW HEIGHTS with the Visual Arts department at Anne Arundel Community College

Courses range from the traditional fine arts to digital design and time-based media. Curriculum emphasizes the technical and conceptual aspects of visual inspiration. Newest course additions include Screen Printing and Metal Art Fabrication.

AACC teaches courses in: • Art History. • Ceramics. • Graphic Design. • Painting and Drawing. • Photography. • Printmaking. • Sculpture. • Video Game Design. • Video and Media Production. • Web Design.

If you love art and want to see what AACC can offer you, visit and select Liberal Arts.

Photo courtesy of Tyler Mitchell


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Beautiful Life Bumpin Uglies by THERESA C. SANCHEZ

Photo by Scott Kostelnik.


ake a moment. Look back and reflect on your youth. Were there any hasty decisions you might have made with your friends? Singer, songwriter, musician, and native son Brandon Hardesty is all too familiar with the repercussions of choosing a bawdy euphemism for his band’s name. “I was about 20 or 21, and me and my buddies wanted something different, funny, and memorable,” says Hardesty, talking about his musical group Bumpin Uglies. “It’s the bane of my existence, now. It’s created some headaches over the years [in terms of bookings]. I didn’t realize I’d be doing this when I was in my 30s.” Hardesty, now 32, has no problem being taken seriously. His talented quartet has logged thousands of hours on the road, played countless venues and festivals, and evolved into a creative powerhouse hard to ignore. Its critically acclaimed fourth studio album, Beast from the East,

(Space Duck Records) debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Chart for Reggae Albums in April. Hardesty attributes the group’s successful trajectory to having a strong work ethic, setting specific goals, making strategic choices, and staying true to their brand. “My whole philosophy on the band is that we stay true to our foundation in ska, punk rock, and reggae,” he says. “We don’t have anyone telling us what to do, so we don’t have to adhere to any formula. We can do stuff that is interesting and intriguing to us, and we can expand and add on to what we’ve always done, organically changing the sound over the years. What I try to do as a songwriter is tell a story.” The most impressive raconteurs use words to transport listeners to another place and time, be it a long-since-filed-away memory or something never personally experienced but easy to identify with. While the group has credited Sublime, The Beach Boys, Bad | 21

Photos by Mark

Religion, and Reel Big Fish as musical inspirations, its main lyrical influence is a four-letter word: life. In an effort to reach the most fans possible, Hardesty ensures his lyrics are as broad as they are impassioned. Take, for example, “City by the Bay,” the second track on the new recording. Hardesty’s contemplative lyrics bear witness to growing up in Maryland’s state capital and describe how both he and the historic city have changed over the years. While there is mention of the Chesapeake Bay by name, the chorus— “No matter where I go, I’ll always come back home. To my city by the bay, city by the bay”— could apply to any inlet from San Francisco to Biscay. By capitalizing on nostalgia and its wellspring of material à la singer-songwriting giants Bryan Adams and John Mellancamp, Hardesty achieves one of his main objectives to engage the audience. “I connect with words and want to bring that to other people,” he says. Delivering a musical message to the masses requires more than just finding the right words. Sometimes tough decisions are made in order to realize a band’s full potential. “[Hardesty]has always got a vision and a good plan, and while it’s changed over the years, it’s always been attainable,” says bassist Dave “Wolfie” Wolf, who also drives the band’s touring van. “We had to see the big picture and had to do things that aren’t exactly fun.” TJ Haslett became the band’s fourth drummer in April 2015. Last year, in an effort to elevate the overall sound, Bumpin Uglies added a fourth member: multiinstrumentalist Chad Wright, joining Hardesty and Wolf.

Establishing a creative synergy is paramount to the group, and collaboration takes place along every step, from the studio to the stage. Bumpin Uglies’ biggest and most recent musical leap forward involved working for the first time with a producer, Howi Spangler, lead singer and guitarist of the Aberdeen-based band Ballyhoo! “I’m a firm believer that, in order to grow, you have to try new things,” says Hardesty. “So we gave it a shot. It was such a good decision because [Spangler] really took what we were doing to another level. It was a perfect fit.” Over the course of about a year, the band painstakingly worked to create a robust East Coast sound showcase—a new album featuring contributions by musicians from the East Coast, including Spangler, The Movement’s Gary Dread, Passafire’s Ted Bowne, Ballyhoo!’s Howi Spangler, and members from Oogee Wawa, Sun-Dried Vibes, and Tropidelic. Artist Nick Kubley designed the record’s cover, with a clever Maryland spin on the beloved Maurice Sendak Where the Wild Things Are monsters. The resulting tracks and package are a testament to ambitious teamwork and Maryland pride. “Brandon’s had a real long journey. I think he has always had this flame, and it sparked in him real hard from day one,” says Ryan Cullen, the band’s longtime sound engineer and owner of Annapolis Audio Lab. “So much has matured from their first record to what they have just achieved with this last one. They have just created this really cool symbiosis, and now

have a solid drive, direction, and confidence. You can just hear and feel the difference. The flame is still there, but it’s brighter and burns harder.” “I feel like our show and the songs are two entirely different things,” says Hardesty. “A live set these days is super energetic and very much a party.” █ The Bumpin Uglies perform aboard the Harbor Queen for a three-hour booze cruise around the Chesapeake Bay on August 17, 2018. The Harbor Queen leaves from Dock Street in Annapolis. For more information, visit

22 | Summer 2018

Photo by Scott Kostelnik.

“I’m a f irm believer that, in order to grow, you have to try new things.”

k Peria.


From left to right: TJ Haslett, Brandon Hardesty, Dave Wolf, Chad Wright. Photo by Will Kubley. | 23


Introducing 's Anniversary Show

Fiber Options June 21 - July 21 Reception: July 1


American Landscapes Aug 23 - Sep 22 Reception: Sep 9

Also on display...

Part of Annapolis Artwalk

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Fall Member Show Sep 22 - Oct 20 Reception: Oct 7


COLLECTOR'S CHOICE The Biggest Annapolis Art Event Oct 28

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Commissioned by Campion Hruby Landscape Architects.


trip through photographer David Burroughs’s website is a journey to the chic, the fashionable, the elegant, the corporate, the sensitive, and the hip. This is a sojourn through David Burroughs’s sensibility. Models are casually glamorous, adorned with beautiful leather handbags. Architecture and gardens are infused with atmosphere that is impeccably lit, with a sense of serenity. Portraits infer a relationship between subject and viewer. There’s something special going on here, something that goes beyond your typical photograph. “I try to find narratives that I can explore through visual means,” says Burroughs. “I come from the film business. I like to tell stories. That’s my approach.” Burroughs’ earliest experience with film came when he was a child growing up in Laurel, Maryland. His father, a media specialist, brought home Super 8 and video cameras. Burroughs and his lifelong friend, Brian Lichty, messed around with the cameras and made animated movies (Burroughs and Lichty are now married to sisters). | 27

Commissioned by Alt Breeding Associates Architecture and Pyramid Builders.

“ That’s how I started learning the lighting . . . It just clicked. I was drawn to it.” 28 | Summer 2018

After high school, in the early 1990s, Burroughs attended film school at New York University and waited tables by night. “In New York, most people eat out almost every night,” explains Burroughs. “You would get to know people. The same couple came in several nights a week. She happened to be a music video director, and her boyfriend was a producer. So, I just hammered them for six months." Through his connections with the couple, Burroughs broke

into the music video world, first working as a production assistant. “That’s how I started learning the lighting," he says. “ It just clicked. I was drawn to it.” Burroughs got to know cameras and lighting inside out, eventually moving to Los Angeles. He worked in film, on music videos, and in photography with the best in the business: Spike Jonze, Lance Acord, and Matt Mahurin, among others. He became a master of lighting and image making. In 2000, with his young family,

Commissioned by Campion Hruby Landscape Architects.

Burroughs moved to Annapolis. “Parenting is a full-time job,” he says. His oldest daughter is in her freshman year at the University of Maryland, where she’s studying journalism. His youngest daughter attends Annapolis High School. Both are learning photography on an old Pentax K1000 film camera. Right now, his studio is filled, floor to ceiling, with handbags so he can shoot the entire web product photography catalogue for HOBO handbags. This would explain all the pictures of purses

on Burroughs’ website. He also specializes in architecture and corporate portraits. There is magic in Burroughs’ architectural photography, a timelessness with a bit of the human element. He seems to get to the essence of a beautiful place. Recently, he spent a full day photographing a kitchen, ensuring that the lighting was absolutely right. He may photograph a certain home as many as eight times for different clients—the architect, the

interior designer, the landscape architect, and the builder. Burroughs is loath to take all the credit for the scenes he creates. His clients are often the creatives in design fields and are hands-on during the shoots. They know what they want in the final image. “It’s really nice to collaborate at that level,” says Burroughs, “where we’re all speaking the same language and working toward the same goal.” | 29

In 2016, with Lichty and Chad Knight, Burroughs started Dirt Media, a multimedia creative marketing company. It has worked with the Hope for Henry Foundation and the Connected Warrior Foundation, making promotional films for public awareness and fundraising purposes. Burroughs has quite a collection of cameras, as one might imagine. When he started out in the business, film was still the method of capture, and shots had to be tested on Polaroid film. Today, he uses instant film for a specific kind of experience. It takes time for instant film to develop. The photographer and the subject have to wait for a minute or two after the shot is taken before they Portrait of Alejandro of Sailor Oyster Bar, for the Oyster Recovery Partnership.

Portrait Polaroid 4x5 of Walker Babington.

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Portrait Polaroid 4x5 of Ruben Dobbs of Swampcandy.

“ [ Y ]ou get to know the person that you’re photographing, and it creates this whole different way of working, it’s more personable.”

Portrait Polaroid Diptych of Brian Lichty.


can see the photograph. During this down time, conversations ensue. “[Y ] ou get to know the person that you’re photographing,” says Burroughs, “and it creates this whole different way of working, it’s more personable.” He uses an old Polaroid passport camera with two lenses to shoot diptychs. He covers one lens with gaffer tape, exposes the film, moves the tape to the other lens, and takes a second shot. A wall in Tsunami Restaurant in Annapolis is covered with several of these types of shots, telling the tale of a night at the bar. “It all goes back to the narrative, telling the story,” says Burroughs. Does Burroughs have a dream project that he’d like to work on? “I already do what I like to do,” he says. “If anything, I want to do more of the storytelling through video with Dirt Media. I think that’s definitely where I’d like to go.” Be sure to check out the elegant swimsuit calendar put out by Sailor Oyster Bar to benefit the Oyster Recovery Effort. You will see Burroughs’ photographs of the lovely boys of Sailor in cheesecake fashion— quite the narrative, indeed. █

Dirt Media Behind The Scenes Video Shoot. | 31


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t’s a gorgeous summer day at the Anne Arundel County Farmers' Market. Rows of pottery are lined up on tables, basking in the sun. The mild, sweet smell of wet earth is carried on the breeze as I feel warm rays on my back. Each spectacular creation used to be a lump of clay and now stands at attention in all its glory, letting the sun take its moisture away and waiting patiently for the next phase of metamorphosis, which is even hotter still. It is apparent, viewing the clay garden planted there by Printemps Pottery, that each piece is made with love. I step into Printemps Pottery’s allsolar-powered studio and see Nevan Pearson-Cody Wise and Doug Wise at their potter’s wheels. Nevan, with laser-like focus, is forming clay into a new shape, the spinning wheel at full speed. Doug is steadily trimming what is to become a mug, making sure he gives it an accurate edge. Both glance up with beaming smiles and say “Hello!” in unison. | 35

These two are partners in work and life. Their story is as beautiful as the pottery they create. Now married nearly eleven years, they met when they became roommates upon the suggestion of a mutual friend and inadvertent matchmaker. Doug fell in love with Nevan and she taught him how create a multitude of functional designs bursting with artistry.

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Nevan earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts in ceramics at Southern Illinois University. She moved to Maryland to take a job at Baltimore Clayworks, a national ceramic arts center. She was also a metal artist in Cockeysville and an art studio technician in Catonsville. She moved to Annapolis to take a job as production manager for Annapolis Pottery, choosing that job over graduate school; she considers the experience a substantial part of learning how to make a living as a potter. Bill and Genevieve McWilliams, then owners of Annapolis Pottery, taught Nevan a great deal, as did her mentor, Ian Stainton, also associated with Annapolis Pottery. During that time, Nevan also taught ceramics at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, where Doug took her class— Nevan became Doug’s roommate first, before becoming his best friend, wife, and ceramics teacher. Doug previously worked as a carpet installer for new construction and in carpet repair. Unfortunately, with the economic downturn of 2008, the volume of his contracted work diminished. He likes to stay busy and enjoys working with his hands, so instead of letting his hands be idle, he asked Nevan to teach him to work with clay. Initially, he sat at the wheel for six hours a day, throwing cylinders. His persistence paid off. Nevan created Printemps Pottery in 2008. Printemps is French for springtime, and Nevan thought it a fitting name for the business, as spring is about rebirth and creation. Doug and Nevan produce 50 unique pieces with seven glazes and/or specific patterns. “It took me two years to learn all of the designs,” says Doug, modestly. He initially sold

his apprentice pots out of a box, “They get to enjoy the sensory graduating to the shelf later that year. pleasure on a daily basis as well When asked what his advice would as the form and function of the be to new ceramics students, he design.” Doug adds, “We listen to wittily replies, “Listen to the teacher. our customers. Some of our best If you experiment ideas come from too much, the clay them.” ends up on the You can find the “ That’s right! wall!” Nevan quickly Printemps Pottery It’s harder than agrees. “That’s pair at many openright! It’s harder air exhibits. They people think, to than people think, display at least 30 make things that to make things designs at events that are functional such as First Sunday are functional and beautiful,” she Arts Festival and beautiful.” says, brush in hand, in Annapolis, perfectly painting a Baltimore Farmers’ dragonfly and bamboo motif. “Nevan Market & Bazaar, and Eastern has a good eye for style and design,” Market in Washington, DC as says Doug, beaming. He explains well as at FinArt Gallery on the process step-by-step: cut, throw, West Street in Annapolis. They trim, sand, bisque, glaze, wipe, wax. also participate in many outdoor Depending on the design, there are festivals in Florida, Georgia, 8 to 10 production phases before New York, Pennsylvania, and a piece of earth can sit proudly on Virginia. Printemps Pottery display in its final functional state. pieces have been collected by fans Nevan enjoys sharing her designs from Argentina, Chile, China, with people because these creations Columbia, Japan, Singapore, and are more than just pieces of art. “It’s all over Europe—beloved treasures interactive for the user,” she says. planted across the globe. █


See Printemps Pottery’s award-winning work at | 37

38 | Summer 2018

Get Some. a nna p olisc anoeandk ayak . c om 311 Third St. Annapolis, MD 21403

& 222 Severn Ave. Bldg. 2 Annapolis, MD 21403 | 410.263.2303


40 | Summer 2018

Arts on Fire by EMMY NICKLIN photography by ALISON HARBAUGH


t’s early April and the sun generously streams through the floor-to-ceiling windows at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, where Elizabeth Ramirez and Pamela Godfrey Stevens tell the story of the Annapolis Arts Alliance. Born out of a project from then Annapolis Mayor Ellen Moyer in 2003, the Alliance started as a group of local artists— representatives from the visual arts, dance, music, theater, written word—and art organizations. They came together to discuss ways that the city and the arts could work together to foster this fundamental part of community. Fifteen years later, the Alliance is flourishing. With more than 100 members and 12 board members, the nonprofit’s website says that it strives “to provide one collective voice for anyone interested in or touched by arts.” Throughout the year, it puts together exhibits

and art shows featuring the work of Alliance members, including an annual Petite Squares exhibit showing 2D and 3D works of art under 12 inches in size and in a particular theme (this year’s being “floral” in honor of the spring season). The organization also offers an array of valuable business of arts seminars, ranging in topic from marketing oneself online as an artist to setting up one’s space at an art fair or festival in the most visually appealing way possible. In addition to networking events, the Alliance also hosts a popup store every holiday season, which features the art of many Alliance members. “[The arts] enrich everybody’s lives on so many levels,” says Stevens. “And it creates community. It creates conversation. It brings people together. It supports people in times of good and bad, you know—art and music are always there.” A flutist who plays with the Annapolis Chamber Orchestra,

Board Members of the Annapolis Arts Alliance pose above Annapolis downtown. L-R: Sonja Holleman (Membership), Elizabeth Ramirez (President) Pamela Godfrey Stevens (Secretary), Dale Hall (PR), Cindy Viener-Hoff (VP), Bill Donaldson, and Frank Brennan. | 41

wholeheartedly immerses herself in bettering her community, including her work as the Alliance’s president. “Music and art are my life,” Ramirez says. She takes pride especially in the collaboration and partnerships the Alliance fosters— whether it be working with the Anne Arundel County Public Library to create a more inviting, colorful space in its temporary location at the Annapolis Mall as its West Street location undergoes renovations or inspiring a newly graduated MICA student to offer help to a local shop with blank walls. Last September, in partnership with Four Rivers Heritage, the Alliance invited 20 students from the Anne Arundel Performing and Visual Arts Middle and high school magnet programs to participate in a sketch crawl with other Alliance artists around downtown Annapolis, painting and sketching historic sites around town. “We ended up in The Chase–Lloyd House Garden where we held up the artwork on clothes lines in this fun, organic, impromptu way,” says Ramirez. “We really love working with others, and I think we do that well.” Membership in the Alliance is open to everyone—artists and art appreciators alike—and ranges in cost from $10 for students to $35 for adults and $55 for organizations. Benefits include discounts on Alliance seminars

“We really love working with others, and I think we do that well.”

2016 juried show at the Maritime Museum. Catherine (Cat) Dolch holding her winning entry.

Holiday shoppers check out an Annapolis Arts Alliance member's work during the holiday pop up shop on West Street. Photo by Dale Hall.

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Stevens is the only board member who has been with the Alliance from the beginning. Now, when she’s not working as the Annapolis campus coordinator for Johns Hopkins Peabody Preparatory or pursuing her third master’s degree, she serves as the organization’s secretary and de facto historian. Ramirez is equally ambitious in her pursuits but like Stevens, her dedication to the Alliance does not waver despite how busy she is. A homeschooling parent, owner of Wimsey Cove Framing and Fine Art Printing, and dedicated member of multiple art and heritage boards, Ramirez

of collaboration between this organization and the mayor’s office and city council once again.” As if on cue, a bright streak of sun pools through the window before Stevens continues. “I think there’s a renaissance happening here. The arts community has finally got a little fire under it. I would like to see the Annapolis Arts Alliance be the center that sort of holds all the arts together. We’re always open to new ideas, we just need to hear them. I’m excited that the arts community is on fire right now!” So are we. █ For a full listing of the Annapolis Arts Alliance events, shows, and workshops, please visit the website:

2016 juried show at the Maritime Museum. Katherine Carney with her category winner. 2016 juried show at the Maritime Museum. Carly Sargant Piel with her award-winning fused glass entry.


and workshops; opportunities to exhibit, sell, or perform at Alliance showcase events; and marketing and promotional support on the Alliance website and in other publications. Above all, the Alliance aims to create a true sense of community that encompasses all forms of art— music, poetry, visual arts, and beyond. Despite the partnerships and plethora of projects the Alliance has created and inspired over the years, Stevens, at times, feels the organization has often been overlooked. “We’ve been [Annapolis’] best-kept secret, and I don’t really want to be that secret anymore.” Lately, though, Stevens feels a shift. “I’m very excited about looking forward, now that we’re really blossoming, now that we have a new mayor. I think there’s going to be a lot | 43



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Music to YourMouth by DAVID O'HIGGINS photography by JOHN BILDAHL


nce upon a time in Annapolis, Sam’s on the Waterfront became immersed in a nightmarish fake-pineapple, coconut-bra brand image that was an ocean away from the culinary mores of local sea-foodies. Consequently, Sam’s has spent the past 30 years struggling with changing identities and with its cuisine in the doldrums, leaving patrons with one big yawn of a dining experience. Today, a renaissance is happening at Sam’s as its owner, Andrew (Andy) Parks, ushers in a fresh direction for the eatery. The undertaking is formidable, as it not only encompasses the reengineering of the interiors but also the revitalization of the quality of its food, its customer service, and the brand. Achieving all these things commands the right blend of guidance and teamwork. Eureka! Park has found a restaurant professional who can assist him with the challenges Sam’s faces. That person is Matty Rose, who has recently taken up the mantle of head chef. Rose, a Marylander, is formally trained in classic French culinary

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techniques. His big break came when he was asked to join David Chang’s twoMichelin-star restaurant Momofuku CCDC in Washington, DC. It was there, he says, that he honed his skills “fine-tuning flavors, food presentation, and testing my plates under the guidance of a master chef.” His food loves are Italian cuisine and seafood with pasta or noodles prepared in the South East Asian style. Working at Momofuku CCDC gave him the opportunity to develop and express his particular culinary passion for the magic of durum wheat. Rose made the decision to join Sam’s because he felt that there was an opportunity to turn the restaurant into something truly great. He is eager to address this challenge. He has an interesting philosophy about customer service: “I think the customer is always right, even when they might be wrong. That is a chance for us to make it right, but in a different way. We listen to customer feedback and use it to improve our culinary offerings and service. I want my customers to be happy and come back.” | 47

L-R:. Jeff Schramek, Matty Rose, Andrew Carr, Andy Parks, Peter Aluzzo.

Andrew Carr, Matty Rose, and Conrado Olivera.

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“It’s not just about me being in charge,” says Rose about his role as head chef. “It’s about delegating in such a way as to engender a strong sense of camaraderie and teamwork. I want everyone in my team to take responsibility and aspire to create an area of ownership that is theirs and make the best of it.” He is graced with kitchen support by way of youngbloods Paul Spangle (lead line cook) and Andrew Carr (line cook), who both sparkle with ambition and promise. Rose is also an accomplished musician. This experience translates to the kitchen, where he and his team cultivate the crescendo of each dish, leaving a symphony of flavors to garnish the plate. Two house managers oversee Sam’s frontline. Peter Aluzzo, a solid, innovative Sam’s veteran, ensures things run smoothly while newcomer Jeff Schramek uses his experience to enliven customer interactions. Their combined expertise brings a zesty style to the front of the house. Sam’s aims to be the go-to dining destination for seafood—an exciting, unique hangout for the locals. Its clientele is diverse. Seniors tend to come in for lunch, whereas in the evenings, hipsters rub shoulders with millionaires and political luminaries mingle with power-boaters. Yes, Sam’s is a veritable melting pot of characters and conversations. Any brand expert will tell you that to develop a successful business you must focus on doing one thing well. This philosophy doesn’t prohibit variations on a theme, but the theme must be simple enough to enable variety. Sam’s leadership knows this principle well. That’s why, from a brand evolution perspective, they’re going back to basics, starting with good old-fashioned culinary techniques. Sam’s fundamental theme is seafood par excellence, primed and expressed in a myriad of groundbreaking ways but based on traditional cooking methods.


The ultimate difference from its competitors, though, is that if the staff aren’t slammed with demand, they will happily endeavor to create whatever dish a customer desires. Nowadays, such devotion to customer service is almost extinct—yet another good reason to come and enjoy the new water-frontier of great Annapolis seafood that is Sam’s on the Waterfront. While Sam’s used to serenade patrons with a kitschy dining experience, its virtuosos are orchestrating sweet harmony between the kitchen and the dining room. █

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Signs L-R Tim Cook, ow ner John Prehn, art isan Tony Thamas angvarn.



ome business enterprises become inextricably woven into a community’s fabric, able to remain anchored during turbulent commercial times when dreams open storefronts and market forces shutter them. Signcraft is not only solidly in that category, but has also served clients with roots firmly planted in Annapolis’ maritime-steeped soil: Rams Head, McGarvey’s, Historic Inns of Annapolis, St. John’s College, US Naval Academy, and other equally storied institutions and enterprises. In a world of digital-on-

demand services, Signcraft has adapted by placing one foot in the new world while holding fast to its heritage in traditional art and graphic design. Owner John Prehn launched the business in 1980, out of the basement of his home in downtown Annapolis. He got his start in the sign business in the 1970s, working with Annapolis Graphics. When he asked the owner to give him a percentage of the business, the owner declined and so Prehn struck out on his own. Over time, he moved the business into a friend’s garage in Eastport. | 53

Photo by Virgil Stephens.

Photo by Tim Cook.

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Annapolis was a smaller town then, and competition from sign franchises hadn’t yet blipped onto the radar. It wasn’t long before people in America’s Sailing Capital learned of Prehn’s steady hand, a necessity for the careful hand-lettering he was doing on boats. He did other work raround town, including for shops and proprietors stationed along downtown’s historic destination thoroughfare, Main Street, traveling from job to job with paint brushes and paints in tow. The niche Prehn has created is a melding of classic graphic arts with the razzle-dazzle elements of computer-based design. While some relics of the trade, such as silkscreen machines, paints, and squeegees, have been removed from the current warehouse location in Annapolis to make way for digital printers, computer stations, and vinyl plotters, craftsmanship is a mainstay. The market favors traditional design and art over products churned out in five minutes, along with accuracy, timeliness, and attention to customer needs.

Signcraft boasts an artisan of its very own—Tony Thamasangvarn—who has a studio on site. Thamasangvarn joined Prehn 30 years ago and brings artistic versatility to Signcraft’s offerings. He can do anything, from sculptures and portraiture to vignettes and animal likenesses such as foxes and herons. At one time, prior to digital prints fulfilling such orders, he was hand-painting banners such as those of the 50-foot variety that hang along overpasses for big-name clients like Northrop Grumman and Westinghouse. Tim Cook, Prehn’s stepson, acknowledges that they have a creative edge over their competition. “We lean toward things like carving, stone work, metal work, bronze casting, [and] sculpture, and also do a lot of industrialtype graphic design. But the prevailing thing is deeper and has a more historical side to it—[with] techniques such as gold leaf and gilding.” Signcraft does a lot of work for the US Naval Academy, fulfilling orders in keeping with the institution’s classic style. “They do things [that] are timeless, so our work has to be the same caliber,” says Cook. A few years back, Signcraft made several sculptures for the USNA, including a full-cast bronze of

the 15-foot Navy goat now located in the Naval Stadium. Other commissions are scattered throughout the academy, including a bronze bust of Charles Larson, a former Navy Admiral, and the dedication plaques for the Academy’s Larson Hall. Cook notes that computers have changed output. “It saves some time, and you can make things bigger, faster. I can order a digital print for a 40-story building, and it shows up the next week.” He joined the business about 20 years ago, after graduating from college and traveling before returning to Annapolis. He decided that graphic design was a good business, and if he was going to work for someone, he may as well help build the family’s business rather than someone else’s. “I appreciated what was before me and committed to it,” he says. There’s an art behind the creation of a sign that grabs and communicates with someone. Cook believes that, in graphic design, you should get the main point across immediately, in a unique and tasteful way, so it doesn’t need much time to figure out what it’s for and what it means—“not full of chaos and extra things,” he explains.

Cook finds that Annapolitans appreciate quality, recognizing that it pays dividends over the long term. When given a choice, Signcraft tends to opt for high-end materials. “We don’t try to upsell them, but let them know the value and know what the differences are.” This is in keeping with the company’s focus on providing quality work and materials that reflect an artisan at work. Certain minor techniques accomplish this—master touches that the layperson may not notice, such as putting metal edges on the tops of signs for an established business, using metal instead of plastics for optimal wear, and using betterquality paints. “We want to make sure we don’t have to go back out for a sign or have someone needing to replace one in a year or two,” says Cook. "We build things with a sense of permanence, that will be around longer than the customer, such as bronze sculptures. We bring that philosophy into the product offering. We continue to focus on making something that can’t be replaced by a nameless, faceless internet presence.” █


Photo by Virgil Stephens. | 55


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Art as



hen people say, ‘I don’t have an artistic bone in my body,’ I will argue that strongly. Everyone has some creative bent, otherwise we would just be clones of each other,” says The Mitchell Gallery’s Lucinda Edinberg. As the museum’s art educator, Edinberg has been facilitating relationships between the general public and the art world since 2001. She collaborates with the preparator on the design and layout of exhibitions and installations and acts as tour guide, lecturer, and host for school groups that come to the gallery. “The artwork speaks for itself, and I hope that I’m just facilitating the appreciation with factoids and promotion of thoughts,” she says. Edinberg creates space not only for the exhibitions but also for visitors of all ages to share their varying opinions on what they see. Not all visitors to the recent exhibit of Robert Indiana’s iconic pop art were impressed, and some described it to Edinberg as “flippant.” Indiana’s most famous

work has the letters in the word LOVE stacked two-by-two, forming a square. Rather than disagreeing with critics, she describes Indiana’s use of negative and positive space and his understanding of composition. “My job isn’t to convince people, but it is to give them a different point of view. I’m the first to say there are some exhibitions I like better than others, but if everyone liked the same thing, there would be a long line,” she explains. A grant from The Helena Foundation created a part-time art educator position for her at the St. John’s College gallery. In 2004, it became full time. “The position has grown because I’ve created more work, and our public has grown, too,” she says. Edinberg noticed an increase in school group field trips as budget cuts eliminated school art programs. “Science, technology, and engineering, that’s all very much needed, but what about the soul? The soul needs to be nourished,” she says. Edinberg enjoys the insights and honesty of her young visitors, whose

Edinburg in the Mitchell Gallery. Frame courtesty of West Annapolis Artworks & Fine Framing. | 59

her. In geometry class, she astute observations can sometimes enjoyed drafting theorems with remain with her for days after her protractor and compass. a workshop. “[The children] In geography she found joy in generally don’t come with a lot of cartography, and in English class bias, and because they don’t have she found that sketching covers a lot of world experience yet,” she for her book reports was always says. “They can just say what they more gratifying than writing the feel.” actual report. “I found the artistic This spring, the gallery hosted way through the subjects,” says kindergartners from The Key Edinberg. She later received a School for a workshop. Edinberg Bachelor of Fine Arts degree showed the students Indiana’s from the University of Texas at Four Seasons of Hope, four distinct Arlington and a master’s degree yet related paintings of the word in art history, philosophy, and HOPE. She remembers asking literature from the College of the children how they felt about Notre Dame of the colors they saw Maryland. She in each painting also took graphic without yet having “[The children] design classes at told them the generally don’t Maryland Institute premise. “One girl College of Art said, ‘That painting come with a lot and has a teaching makes me feel like of bias . . . They certificate. I want to go to the Edinberg beach,’ and it was can just say what recommends indeed the summer they feel.” that aspiring picture. A second girl artists and those said, ‘Excuse me, but desiring a career in the art world is he trying to paint emotions?’ hone a number of viable talents So they just get it,” says Edinberg, and remain flexible. “What helps marveling at her guests. is having a full palette of skills There was a time when besides a color palette,” she says. Edinberg never thought she “Be good at social media, be a would be an art educator. She good business person, and know was discouraged when, as an art how to write. Very few people teacher at a local high school, have the luxury of just being in the she witnessed art classes serving studio to paint.” as a last-ditch effort to engage When Edinberg leaves The a struggling student. “I thought, Mitchell Gallery for the day, she if I don’t help to change that takes her work home with her in perception of art education, then the best possible way and says she I am as guilty as anyone else,” she is never bored. “I’m always looking reflects. to recraft what I do, or think about Ironically, the seeds of her how to relay the message better,” artistic career were not planted she says. “I have a fabulous job through an early immersion that I’m really honored to have. I in art, but by finding the art never leave art.” █ in whatever subject was before

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or centuries, compasses have served as a critical navigational tool for journeyers. The flat, circular device orients travelers by designating their location in relation to the four cardinal points: north, south, east, and west. Nowadays, such tools are digitized and part of everyday devices, from automobiles to smartphones. But for the Annapolitan youths participating in Box of Rain’s Summer on the Bay program —many of whom lack access to these methods of physical and virtual transport — the compass takes on a different kind of significance. “We presented the first Sailor of the Year Award, which is an engraved compass, in 2003 to a young boy named Roland,” says Box of Rain Founder and Board Chair Anne Harrington. “The program changed his life, and he still has it. When faced with the

occasional setback, I say to him, ‘Look at your compass. Keep your eye on it and remember what it stands for.’ That’s why the award is so symbolic. If you start to go off course, all you have to do is refer to it to get back on your path and keep moving straight ahead in life.” Award recipients are handpicked by the counselors and instructors who work directly with the children in water-related activities every Tuesday and Thursday over the course of seven weeks, from June to August. An awardee must have perfect attendance, display a good attitude, prove an ability to be a team player, and demonstrate leadership skills and a willingness to learn. In addition to earning the trophy, the child’s name is put on a plaque, alongside previous winners, that features a painting by local artist Kathryn Leonard. The ceremony helps to show the children what it means to win an award.

Annapolis Canoe & Kayak owner Dave Young donates his fleet of kayaks for a day every summer to 50 Box of Rain youths.

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The Annapolis-based nonprofit has been teaching through example since its inception 16 years ago. When 51-year-old entrepreneur and local sailor Lee Griffin was killed in a random and senseless act of violence on the night of September 19, 2002, his friends and family could have become bitter. Instead, in an effort to prevent something like that from happening again in this historic waterfront city, they banded together and developed a plan to help transform the lives of those who, like the perpetrators, live in underprivileged areas. “I was so totally driven to make things right,” says Harrington. “I almost felt like [Lee Griffin] was working through me. I was not going to start it and let it go by the wayside.” She helped cofound the charity with community activist Larry Griffin (no relation) who also runs the nonprofit We Care and Friends. They chose to name the organization Box of Rain in honor of Lee, who christened his 27-foot Hunter sailboat after the popular Grateful Dead song. It seemed a fitting tribute, given his previous video production work with the legendary folk-rock jam band and that the lyrics addressed issues of mortality and life choices while on this box of rain—this world. From the outset, Box of Rain’s primary mission has been to provide low-income children in Annapolis with an opportunity to get out on the water, gain maritime-based skills, learn about the Chesapeake Bay and its diverse wildlife, engage in character-building exercises, and cultivate relationships with adults and peers. “Everyone should have the experience of boating, crabbing, fishing, sailing, and paddle boarding,” says Harrington. It also provides paid jobs and leadership training to qualified 66 | Summer 2018

Summer Program Director Candi Brown congratulates Sailor of the Year Jodi Downs as Box of Rain founder and Board Chair Anne Harrington looks on.

teens throughout the summer, so they gain a better understanding of the responsibilities of having a job and earning a paycheck. Tammy Bruneman participated in the program and has worked as a paid counselor for the last three years. One of her brothers has also assisted in the past. “It’s truly an enriching experience. You come into contact with kids who don’t get exposed to activities like this. You get to be with them, talk to them, help them grow

and learn and experience things they never would have thought of doing.” What started as summer involvement with the youth has, over the years, expanded to a year-round commitment, helping to nurture self-esteem and self-worth and guide towards a sustainable life and career. It now includes an eight-week Build a Boat program, a Step it Up Kids fitness program, and the 100 Book Challenge.

Volunteer tutor Patrick Fleeharty helps a Box of Rain child learn how to read as part of the 100 Book Challenge literacy program.

Box of Rain General Program Director Meredith Krissoff teaches Box of Rain children the basics of sailing Rainbows.


In 2016, Executive Director Karen Colburn launched an intensive, social emotional learning program called Charting Careers, starting with fifth graders and ending at graduation. Students work with guidance counselors, teachers, and mentors to determine what they want to achieve. “I noticed, “ There’s nothing three years ago when I first started, that if you more validating don’t have continuous and rewarding than engagement with the kids—and I mean having a kid come like every month— back to me and say, you lose them,” says ‘ You saved my life.’ ” Colburn. “I realized that we needed to be continuing relationships, and not just with the kids, but with the families, too." Apparently, the program has done so well that the board decided it will become its own separate entity. Looking ahead, Box of Rain will return to its maritime focus and develop additional maritime relationships. Statistics confirm the importance of long-term projects. Sixty-six percent of the 75 Box of Rain youth do not participate in anything like it, and 43 percent do not partake in other extracurricular activities. Harrington is humbled by what Box of Rain has accomplished. “I think 16 years is a wonderful achievement,” she says. “I’m proud of all the people I work with and of the kids who keep us going. There’s nothing more validating and rewarding than having a kid come back to me and say, ‘You saved my life’ or ‘My brother and I wouldn’t have gotten through without the support from Box of Rain.’ That is what makes all the hard effort worth it.” █ Box of Rain youths collaborate on Eastport Shell station mural with local artist Charles Lawrance and Future History Now's Jeff Huntington and Julia Gibb. | 67


URBAN WALLS BRAZIL Through murals, workshops, and a series of Art Talks in public schools, Urban Walls Brazil (UWB) created a platform for cultural exchange. UWB is making sure people understand the importance and value of diversity in our society while partnering with socially engaged organizations to advocate for their cause and bring our community together. In partnership with Maryland Theatre for The Performing Arts, a new mural painted by Brazilian artist Erica Mizu will be reviewed at the Annapolis Arts Week Kick Off party on June 1st. Erica, who is one of the most prominent Brazilian urban artists, will be painting the mural with local high school students as she demonstrates the power of art when used as a tool to unite and educate people.


Visit Annapolis & Anne Arundel County is a proud supporter of the Annapolis Arts District and it’s creative verve. Create your moment in the cultural hub of the Annapolis Arts District, where creatives and small businesses are serving artistic flavor.


(Re)Creating the Gallery by LEAH WEISS photography by JOHN BILDAHL


rtist Cindy Fletcher Holden had a predicament: the painter/muralist needed a large space for a weekend art exhibit. It was 2002, and she was eyeing the McNasby Oyster Company building, which the Annapolis Maritime Museum had recently leased from the City of Annapolis. Holden could use the Eastport building on two conditions. First, she would be responsible for clearing and cleaning the space. “It was still a 100-year-old oyster house that smelled like a 100-year-old oyster house, and it was filled, from floor to ceiling, with stuff,” Holden recalls, laughing. Second, the show must have something maritime—not a focus of the artists’ works—associated with it. While pondering this problem, Holden, working on a mural in Galesville, spilled some paint. “It was oozing into the cracks in the sidewalk, which I thought was really pretty,” she says. A brainstorm ensued, and “art between the cracks” morphed into Art Between the Creeks (ABTC)— an apt name for an exhibition of artists living around greater Annapolis.

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Preparing the space was a formidable task. Holden recruited some nearby boatyard workers to clear out heavy items, and she and her fellow artists gave considerable time and muscle as they

Aerial view of the gallery.

cleaned and painted, transforming the space. The exhibit was successful, and ABTC took off, surprising Holden as it evolved into a well-known biannual weekend event. Each June and November, hundreds come to ABTC’s Friday night opening party at its current home in the Backyard Boats building at 222 Severn Avenue to see the latest works from notoften-seen artists. Holden wasn’t looking to lead ABTC. In 1992, artist Simeon Coxe invited her to be part of a three-person art show in a warehouse on Bestgate Road. “He

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knew I was doing large, relatively unusual paintings that, his words, ‘didn’t fit the normal Main Street Annapolis arts scene,’” she explains. He titled the show “Warehouse of the Refused,” a playful riff on “Salon of the Refused,” a nineteenthcentury impressionist French art exhibition. The concept shifted to recruiting talented artists without an established venue or who thought their art would not be accepted. When Coxe moved away from Annapolis after a few more shows, he told Holden, “It’s all yours.” The project lay dormant for nearly a decade, until Holden gathered some artist friends who didn’t know whether or where to show their work. One such artist, Michael Matthews, created beautiful wrapping paper with inks and mixed media and then threw it away after use. Holden’s reaction was, “Get it on a wall!” And with Coxe’s concept in her head, she sprang into action. After Hurricane Isabel severely damaged the McNasby building, ABTC found space in the Annapolis Yacht Club’s storage building. But it had an abundance of shelving, and its walls and shelves could not be drilled into. Artist Channing Houston devised a plan: the artists wiretied 1x4-inch boards to the shelving and then attached 4x8-foot sheets of plywood that they’d painted white. After hiring an electrician to install plugs, they hung

Leonard Koscianski

Channing Houston

and positioned bucket lights, and the transformation was complete. “When we were done, it was shocking how beautiful the space looked. It looked like a New York gallery,” Holden says. Over time, Annapolis Yacht Club needed more of its space, and ABTC was welcomed at Backyard Boats, housed in the historic Trumpy Yacht Yard building. There, the artists again engineered a complete gallery without modifying the walls. Says Holden, “The other spaces felt like an art galley first, with remnants of other uses. But in this space, we don’t create a room, we only create a wall inside this old, wooden warehouse. The boats are there, and they create a character.” Audience crossover occurs during the exhibition, as art lovers see the boats for sale and boat clients view the art. Molly Winans | 73

Holden finds new ABTC artists unconventionally. Once, while in Eastport Liquors, she struck up a conversation with an employee; his artwork is now in the show. She seeks artists of all ages, with a variety of styles, “from conservative to offthe-wall, scratch-your-head,” she explains. A few months before each show, Holden convenes the artists. They share what they are doing with their art, discuss business, and name the show—but there is no obligation for the artists to respond to the name. “I can’t bring myself to dictate to them what to do,” she says. “The only thing I request is that the art be new.” This provides motivation and a deadline. Over the years, Holden has seen artists become more experimental, supportively push each other, and create friendships. The week leading up to the show runs like clockwork. On Monday, the walls go up—they now take 90 minutes to assemble and 60 minutes to take down— and on Tuesday, lights are installed and positioned. Wednesday is “hanging night,” when artist Leonard Koscianski curates the exhibit: artists arrive with all potential entries at 5 p.m., and by 7 p.m. pieces are selected and their placement decided. The show starts late Friday morning and concludes on Sunday afternoon. By Monday morning, business at Boatyard Boats resumes, “like in Cinderella, back to the pumpkin,” smiles Holden. ABTC is self-sufficient, neither relying on grants nor turning a profit but thriving by other standards. Artists pay a modest entry fee, and a stunningly low percent commission is taken for sales. Backyard Boats provides the space gratis. For the Friday night party, Boatyard Bar & Grill donates toward liquor and incidentals, the artists bring finger food, and Box of Rain provides onsite bartenders. Drinks are free, and the tip jar is usually full. “[There’s] nothing drippy, nothing red, nothing stainy,” says Holden, mindful of the space, boats, and art.

Artwork by and with Sandy Travis Bildahl.

Artists Matthew Stone and Charles Lawrance.

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Cindy Fletcher Holden in front of one of her pieces.

Art Between the Creeks 15 Friday, June 8, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., party begins at 6 p.m. Saturday, June 9, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, June 10, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Learn more about Art Between the Creeks at


2018 marks ABTC’s fifteenth anniversary. “I am still shocked that this is still going,” exclaims Holden, but she is clearly motivated to continue. “It’s a passion, because I’ve watched some of my artists friends go from [obscurity] to respectfully selling work. It’s to let the Annapolis public know that there’s a boatload of talent here!” █

Anita Hagan in front of one of her linoleum block prints, The Journey Back. Acrylic and gold leaf. | 75


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At Open Eye Gallery, Art ist Colin Lacey has a tab le set up containing ma ny pieces and works in progress.




his year, more than 42 million— one in four—Americans will experience a mental health disorder regardless of age, race, religion, gender, or economic status. Such a disorder could include depression, anxiety, attention deficit disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia, among others. According to the American Psychological Association, only 44 percent of individuals with a mental illness receive the treatment they need. One contributing factor is lack of access to care: either behavioral health facilities do not exist in the area of need, or community facilities cater to individuals who have private insurance or who can afford to pay out of pocket for services. In 1955, the US government began deinstitutionalizing (releasing) long-stay patients—most with behavioral health disorders—from psychiatric hospitals. By the late 1970s, President Jimmy Carter’s Commission on Mental Health stated that deinstitutionalization had “the

objective of maintaining the greatest degree of freedom, self-determination, autonomy, dignity, and integrity of body, mind, and spirit for the individual [with mental illness] while he or she participates in treatment or receives services.” This strategy, however, brought with it a new and serious problem: individuals and their families could not find places to receive proper treatment or services, leading many to forgo treatment. In 1975, a group of parents in Anne Arundel County who found themselves in this situation with their adult children decided to take action by founding Arundel Lodge. The new nonprofit organization set out to improve the lives of children, adults, and families affected by mental health and substance use disorders. Guided by the Recovery Model, Arundel Lodge’s philosophy is rooted in treating individuals experiencing behavioral health disorders with respect. The focus is on the needs, strengths, and goals of the community members it serves, assisting them | 79

in achieving their endeavors, helping them make decisions about treatment through education and linkages, and facilitating opportunities for social interaction, creative expression, and community involvement. By 2005, growth in the community’s need prompted an expansion. Turning to architect Catherine Purple Cherry, who specializes in designing spaces for people with special needs, a welcoming, healing space was created. The expansion allowed the Arundel Lodge to add programs, such as the Open Eye Gallery and Studio Art Program. The Open Eye Gallery and Studio Art Program offers a supportive environment for a community of artists in recovery from mental health and substance use disorders to grow, cope with trauma, and gain confidence through the visual arts. Much of the artwork produced by participants in Arundel Lodge’s art program is for sale. Eighty percent of profits from sales go directly to the artists, many of whom are on medical assistance, and the remaining 20 percent helps replenish art supplies. Most importantly, participants have the opportunity to explore their artistic interests and create expressive works that come from the heart.

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Works from the Open Eye Gallery are displayed in shows and exhibitions around the community. This has included a recent Artists Without Limits Over the Rainbow show at the Arundel Center. In April, at 49 West Coffeehouse, Winebar & Galley, the exhibit Transformations displayed 54 works by 11 artists and included paintings, drawings, and mixed media. Asymmetrik, a software development company in Annapolis Junction, is hosting a spring and summer show featuring 35 works by 8 artists. On Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons, the Open Eye Gallery is open to the community for use as a studio space, with a suggested annual donation of $10, plus $2 per visit. While basic drawing supplies are provided, artists are

also invited to bring their own supplies. The Open Eye Gallery and Art Studio Program also seeks volunteers to help with activities such as framing and hanging art, offering support and encouragement to clients, and more. Today, Arundel Lodge serves over 3,000 community members annually and has been designated as a Center for Excellence in Recovery by the State of Maryland. In 2015, it added two important programs: First Step Recovery Program, to

25—in identifying educational and career goals and working to achieve them. One of Arundel Lodge’s most recent endeavors is creating Military Veterans Support Services (MoVeSS) for veterans and their families. MoVeSS will be the “Call for a Cause” at Arundel Lodge’s 2018 annual fall fundraiser. Its theme is “Night in Havana,” and will include dinner, dancing, entertainment, and auctions. The organization is seeking sponsorship and item donations for the event.

assist community members with substance use disorders, and the Marcus Youth and Family Center, which provides services to youth aged 4 to 17. In 2017, Arundel Lodge added a program to support transition-age youth—ages 16 to

Arundel Lodge seeks to improve the health and happiness of individuals and families through recovery-oriented services, and we are fortunate to have such a resource in our community. █

To learn more, volunteer, or make a donation, visit or contact Tanya St. John at 443-433-5928 or For more information about The Open Eye Gallery, contact Corinna Woodard, Art Program and Gallery Director at 443-433-5914 or

HOOD | 81



The Inner West Street Association is a 501(c)6 nonprofit organization The Annapolis Arts & Entertainment District is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization

19fiftythree & ArtFarm 45 West Street • 49 West Coffeehouse & Gallery 49 West Street • Annapolis Collection Gallery 55 West Street • Art at Large 112 West Street • Bignell Watkins Hasser Architects 1 Park Place • Bohl Architects 3 Church Circle • Cafe Ole 33-1/2 West Street

Cindy Loo Hoo’s Boutique

124 West Street • Finart 214 West St •

Good Architecture 132 West Street • Hammond Wilson Architecture 209 West Street • Herrmann Advertising 30 West Street • Hudson and Fouquet Salon 181 West Street • Loews Annapolis Hotel 126 West Street • Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts 801 Chase Street • Maryland Theater for the Performing Arts Park Place • Nancy Hammond Editions 192 West Street • Rams Head On Stage 33 West Street • Sadona Salon and Spa 15 West Street • Stan and Joes Saloon 37 West Street • Sugar Farm Productions 45 West Street • UMI Studio Yoomi Yoon • 35 West Street Whitehall Gallery 57 West Street •





Photo by Pieter Gaspersz.