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BMA press release:
BALTIMORE, MD (February 19, 2014)—The BMA celebrates Baltimore’s arts community with Baker Artist Awards 2013, an annual exhibition showcasing the winners of the prestigious $25,000 Mary Sawyers Baker Prize. On view February 26 through April 6 in the revitalized Contemporary Wing, the exhibition includes a new sculptural installation by Jonathan Latiano, photography by Lynne Parks, and a video of cellist Dariusz Skoraczewski. Since 2008, the Baker Artist Awards have provided financial support and career-changing opportunities to emerging and established artists in Baltimore City and the five surrounding counties.
For the exhibition at the BMA, visual artists Jonathan Latiano and Lynne Parks explore the idea of loss from different conceptual perspectives: Jonathan Latiano taking a more symbolic approach and Lynne Parks capturing real-world consequences. Latiano’s immersive, site-specific installation calls attention to the extinction of the baiji dolphin, an aquatic mammal known as the Goddess of the Yangtze. Suspended driftwood sculptures, carved to mimic the dolphin’s skeleton, gradually take shape and cascade above viewers across an expansive gallery in the Contemporary Wing then slowly revert to the natural form of driftwood. Park’s installation focuses on two parallel bodies of work. The first series of photographs portray deceased birds that were unable to navigate during migration season due to light pollution and buildings without visible glass. This phenomenon of light altering perception is the subject of the second series, which documents the glass structures and spaces that create this disorienting effect for birds and people alike. Dariusz Skoraczewski is the principal cellist for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. A video display in the galleries will provide a sample of his brilliant mastery of the cello. Works performed include Bach’s Suite No. 1 in G major; Hindemith’s Sonata for Cello Solo Op. 25 No. 3; and Lutosławski’s Sacher Variation for Cello solo.
The Baker Artist Awards were established by the William G. Baker, Jr. Memorial Fund and are a program of the Greater Baltimore Cultural Alliance. A diverse selection of works by nine $1,000 b-grant winners, curated by the Maryland Institute College of Art’s MFA in Curatorial Practice Class of 2015, was presented at D center Baltimore last December.
The BMA exhibition is curated by Helene Grabow, Curatorial Assistant of Contemporary Art, and Benjamin Levy, Curatorial Assistant of Prints, Drawings & Photographs. The exhibition is sponsored by The William G. Baker Memorial Fund.