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Merkin Dream

BALTIMORE, Wednesday, February 5 2020  -- This February Maryland Art Place (MAP) will be presenting Merkin Dream, a group exhibition and invitational ushering artists to consider the merkin, its uses, its need, and in some cases, the inevitable comedy of the merkin as an object. Merkin Dream opens Thursday, February 20 with a reception beginning at 6 pm (free) and closes Saturday, March 28 with a ticketed Fashion Show, doors at 7pm. A portion of proceeds from merkin sales will benefit Planned Parenthood. Artists to be announced.

Brief History

A merkin is a wig for the pubic area originally used by women working in prostitution. According to various sources the merkin first appeared around 1450 primarily to prevent the spread of human lice amongst sex workers. The wigs were derived from goat and horsehides, and at times human hair, serving as a vehicle for hygiene. Women shaved their genitalia to combat lice, but still needed to appear clean and well-groomed to solicit continued patronage. At the time a majority of sex workers were selling themselves to survive and the merkin ensured good business. The utility of merkin was also employed by male actors to cover their genitals when they were cast in a female role. In the mid-1700s, merkins became fashionable and were often threaded with pearls and ribbons, dyed different colors and adorned, used for decoration and to denote status. Today, Hollywood is the leading, contemporary market for the merkin outside of the fetish industry, and is utilized to bypass unwanted viewing ratings for nudity and/or to placate a shy actress unwilling to bare it all on camera.

Armpit shaving emerged in the early 1900s. Unlike pubic hair removal to alleviate lice, armpit shaving was merely a fashion trend instigated and perpetuated by commercialism (Gillette). Leg shaving came later as hemlines started to creep up. In 1960 and 1980 having pubic hair was the mainstay. In more recent history, the porn industry has enforced grooming standards, introducing trends such as the landing strip, the triangle, and fully shaven, pressuring women to groom themselves according to each new fantasy. Over the last 20 years, complete hair removal was normalized and often preferred. According to a 2018 Healthline article, 73 percent of guys and 55.6 percent of gals favor hair removal. More recently we’ve seen an “All Natural” renaissance, supporting the growth of all body hair. These ever-changing standards regarding body hair demonstrate a need to conform; implying that our desire to be desired is driven by sex, allure, chastity, shame, acceptance and more. Shaving or no shaving, merkin or no merkin, what we do with our body hair is more than a preference - it’s a statement. 

Overall Merkin Dream aims to explore intimacy as an umbrella for both serious and light-hearted uses. Topics of consideration include:

  • Sex work is Work: consumption & the commodification of women (elective sex work versus forced)

  • Body Image: disembodiment, shame & identity 

  • Digital Euphoria: technology’s role & our immediate gratification culture (what is real?)

  • Performance: fun, absurdity, merkin as an object, materials use

Merkin Dream Artists Announced

BALTIMORE, Wednesday, February 12, 2020  -- This February Maryland Art Place (MAP) will be presenting Merkin Dream, a group exhibition and invitational ushering individuals to consider the merkin, its uses, its need, and in some cases, the inevitable comedy of the merkin as an object. Merkin Dream opens Thursday, February 20 with a reception beginning at 6 pm (free) and closes Saturday, March 28 with a ticketed Fashion Show, doors at 7pm. A portion of proceeds from merkin sales will benefit Planned Parenthood and FORCE.

Merkin Wall Artists: 

Rahne AlexanderLaura AmussenJackie AndrewsCarly BalesDelaney CateKaren CostonTheresa ColumbusMelissa CormierJoan CoxBonnie CrawfordJacob Whayne DillowLaure DrogoulCaitlin GillAli MirskyMary OpasikMarla ParkerFanni SomogyiErin StellmonDan Van AllenVivienne Varay, Bunny Vicious, and Melissa Webb

Bella La Blanc will host a table featuring 3-D printed pasties at the opening reception on Thursday, February 20. 

Main Exhibiting Artists: Laura AmussenMollye BendellSera BoenoJoan CoxLiz DowningFORCEAmy HelminiakJulia Kim SmithShoog McDanielLiz MillerJennie Thwing, and  Stephanie Williams

Brief HistoryA merkin is a wig for the pubic area originally used by women working in sex work. According to various sources the merkin first appeared around 1450 primarily to prevent the spread of human lice amongst sex workers. The wigs were derived from goat and horsehides, and at times human hair, serving as a vehicle for hygiene. Women shaved their genitalia to combat lice, but still needed to appear clean and well-groomed to solicit continued patronage. At the time a majority of sex workers were selling themselves to survive and the merkin ensured good business. The utility of merkin was also employed by male actors to cover their genitals when they were cast in a female role. In the mid-1700s, merkins became fashionable and were often threaded with pearls and ribbons, dyed different colors and adorned, used for decoration and to denote status. Today, Hollywood is the leading, contemporary market for the merkin outside of the fetish industry, and is utilized to bypass unwanted viewing ratings for nudity and/or to placate a shy actress unwilling to bare it all on camera.

 

Armpit shaving emerged in the early 1900s. Unlike pubic hair removal to alleviate lice, armpit shaving was merely a fashion trend instigated and perpetuated by commercialism (Gillette). Leg shaving came later as hemlines started to creep up. In 1960 and 1980 having pubic hair was the mainstay. In more recent history, the porn industry has enforced grooming standards, introducing trends such as the landing strip, the triangle, and fully shaven, pressuring women to groom themselves according to each new fantasy. Over the last 20 years, complete hair removal was normalized and often preferred. According to a 2018 Healthline article, 73 percent of guys and 55.6 percent of gals favor hair removal. More recently we’ve seen an “All Natural” renaissance, supporting the growth of all body hair. These ever-changing standards regarding body hair demonstrate a need to conform; implying that our desire to be desired is driven by sex, allure, chastity, shame, acceptance and more. Shaving or no shaving, merkin or no merkin, what we do with our body hair is more than a preference - it’s a statement. 

Overall Merkin Dream aims to explore intimacy as an umbrella for both serious and light-hearted uses. Topics of consideration include:

  • Sex work is Work: consumption & the commodification of women (elective sex work versus forced)

  • Body Image: disembodiment, body positivity, shame & identity 

  • Digital Euphoria: technology’s role & our immediate gratification culture (what is real?)

  • Performance: fun, absurdity, merkin as an object, materials use

Safe House

 

Maryland Art Place (MAP) is pleased to be partnering with the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA’s) Curatorial Practices Program this spring. MAP will be hosting two exhibitions simultaneously by students of the program.

Locus amoenus, Locus terribilis is a multimedia group exhibition curated by Ashley He with works by artists: Antonio McAfee, Cooper Holoweski, Rebecca Ou, Dana Matthews, and Seungkyung Oh. The exhibition explores the transformation of the human body and psyche under various apocalyptic conditions, tracing the emergence of progression or degeneration in the endless cycle of birth, death, and re-birth.

The title, Locus amoenus, Locus terribilis is derived from the Roman poet Ovid’s Metamorphoses, meaning the place of pleasure and the place of fear. In a series of commissioned works, conventional notions of what it means to be human are challenged, reflecting on how the value of life itself is brought sharply into focus at the time of crisis. Working in various media, including: photographs, videos, wearable arts, and site-specific installations, the artists investigate the labyrinthine complexity of the relationship between the individual, humanity, and the environment.

Safe House curated by Sungah Kang features the artwork of seven feminist artists based in Korea and also in the US. Each artist expresses their own perspectives on Feminism in different mediums. Artworks range from pop art painted images -to  video - to collage and ground installation. From the various angles of feminism, Safe House contains diversities in big movement. Because most of the artists are located in Korea, the exhibition promotes cross-cultural understanding for visitors based here in Baltimore. Exhibiting artists include: HeeJung Nam, Gyeongyeon Kim, Youngjoo Cho, Yunkyoung Cho, Kyuwon Kim and Seyun Moon

 


In light of COVID-19, we are all in an unprecedented and difficult moment. Every aspect of life has been interrupted, including cultural programming. As a response to the current uncertainty, Ashley He, Sungah Kang and MAP are launching an online exhibition which will also document the transition of this project under the pandemic. The online exhibition will be hosted on MAP's new virtual exhibitions page June 4 - June 27.

 

 

MAP CAPTURES 20 YEARS OF BALTIMORE MUSIC PHOTOGRAPHY 2000-2020

MAP CAPTURES 20 YEARS OF
BALTIMORE MUSIC PHOTOGRAPHY 2000-2020

This September 24, 2020, Maryland Art Place (MAP) will open its first exhibition to the public since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. Long in the making, SEEN, curated by Josh Sisk, Joe Giordano with support from Audrey Gatewood, represents a comprehensive and inclusive overview of music with a heavy emphasis on Baltimore Indie, Rap and Hip-Hop genres and the photographers that captured this important time.
 
Baltimore’s music scene has been on the rise during the last 20 years. SEEN includes images of artists such as KSwift whose untimely death led to the 92Q KSwift Memorial Scholarship Contest and Internship Program in 2009, to indie all stars such as Beach House who have achieved international fame since releasing their first album making Pitchfork’s Best Album list in 2008. The exhibition’s inception came to MAP from local photographer and former Board Trustee, Joe Giordano, "Music photography is left out of galleries and is sometimes looked down on as art. This couldn't be further from the truth. As seen here, music photography deserves its place on the walls of galleries."

 

SEEN is produced in partnership with WTMD radio who is creating a documentary segment on the last 20 years of Baltimore music. The documentary will be screened at MAP in November (details to come.) In the interim, hear more by tuning into WTMD Towson Radio Tuesday, September 15 at 9pm and Sunday, September 20 at 4pm. Collectively MAP & WTMD Radio thank the PNC Foundation for their support of this important exhibition. “The City of Baltimore and its region has a long and noted history of being the center of the club music scene across multiple types of music and genres,” said Will Backstrom, PNC client and community relations director for Greater Maryland. “PNC is proud to partner with MAP and WTMD to tell this fascinating and important story.” 
 
SEEN includes the following photographers (in no order): Mike Jon, Valerie Paulsgrove, Jefferson Jackson Steele, Andrew Mangum, Frank Hamilton, Josh Sisk, Brandon Fieldhouse, Perri Fae, Natasha Tylea, Kate Frese, Sydney Allen, Ted Henn, Kelley Connelly, Farrah Skeiky, Shane Gardner, Megan Elyse Lloyd, Stewart Mostofsky, J.M. Giordano, Dubscience, Pink Lloyd Wright, Micah E. Wood and Theresa Keil. Stage Design Support by Chris Attenborough and Jenna Dutton.
 


SEEN will be on view Thursday, September 24 - Saturday, November, 14.  The exhibition will open Thursday, September 24 with a reception held from 5:00 pm to 8:30 pm. We have designated two hour and a half slots: Reception A with a timeslot from 5 pm to 6:30 pm and Reception B with at timeslot of 7 pm to 8:30 pm. YOU MUST  RSVP TO ATTEND. Click on the link below to RSVP.

 

RECEPTION A- 5pm

RECEPTION B- 7pm


We are allowing Up to 20 guests per slot to view the show at one time. Masks are required at all times unless you're drinking a beverage in which case we ask that you distance yourself a minimum of 6 feet from other guests while you drink per CDC recommendations.
 

For more information visit www.mdartplace.org

 
 

Maryland Art Place (MAP) inspires, supports, and encourages artistic expression through innovative programming, exhibitions, and educational opportunities while recognizing the powerful impact art can have on our community. MAP creates a dynamic environment for artists of our time to engage the public by nurturing
 

 

 

Under $500 Exhibition

Under $500 Exhibition

Opening Reception: Saturday, December 12, 2020 | 11am to 5pm

2nd Chance: Sunday, December 13, 20120 | 11am to 4pm 

Online Exhibition: Tuesday, December 15 | 10am to Saturday, December 19 | 10pm

Maryland Art Place is excited to announce our eighth annual UNDER $500 affordable art sale happening this December! On Saturday, December 12 join us for a first-come, first-served opportunity to purchase affordable and original works of art. The event will feature the work of Baltimore and surrounding area artists at a price point of $500 or less. Purchase work at any point throughout the sale on Saturday from 11am to 5pm and take it home that day!

Deck the walls by giving the gift of art this holiday season! The sales event will take place Saturday, December 12 from 11am to 5pm & Sunday, December 13 from 11am to 4pm. The virtual sale and exhibition will be featured online HERE from Tuesday, December 14 at 10am– Saturday, December 19 at 10pm. Artwork will not be available online until December 14 at 10am but be sure to register in advance!

Tickets are LIMITED and begin at $30 for the first available opportunity to see the physical exhibition on Saturday, December 12 at 11am. Sunday tickets are FREE, but you will need to reserve your spot, as occupancy is limited to 25 attendees per SLOT. To purchase your Saturday tickets  or reserve your Sunday spot visit https://UNDER500.givesmart.com. See ticketing details and event protocol below.

Artists to be Announced 

The Call for Entry is still OPEN for more information click HERE or visit our website HERE

TICKETS
SATURDAY, December 12
SLOT A: 11am – 12:30pm |  $30
SLOT B: 1pm – 2:30pm |  $25
SLOT C: 3:00pm – 4:30pm |  $20

SUNDAY, December 13
SLOT D: 11am – 12pm |  FREE
SLOT E: 12:15pm – 1:15pm |  FREE
SLOT F: 1:30pm – 2:30pm |  FREE
SLOT G: 2:45pm – 3:45pm |  FREE

To purchase tickets for Saturday or reserve your spot for Sunday click HERE

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Maryland Art Place (MAP) inspires, supports, and encourages artistic expression through innovative programming, exhibitions, and educational opportunities while recognizing the powerful impact art can have on our community. MAP creates a dynamic environment for artists of our time to engage the public by nurturing

MASKerade: Virtual Silent Auction and Exhibition

MASKerade

Virtual Silent Auction and Exhibition 
Launches November 7, 2020

 

Join us for MASKerade Baltimore - a virtual silent auction and exhibition hosted by the Baltimore Community Foundation's LGBTQ Fund to raise awareness and funds for issues facing the LGBTQ community in Baltimore. Since launching in 2018, the LGBTQ Fund has awarded nearly $100,000 to organizations fighting discrimination, providing health services, producing arts and culture events, and supporting LGBTQ youth with anti-bullying and suicide prevention programs. Funds from MASKerade will be used to establish an endowment, ensuring vital support for LGBTQ youth programs in perpetuity.

To view the silent auction, LIVE on November 7, or to register to bid click HERE 

More than 100 artists and non-artists picked up canvas masks in August and September and are now in the process of transforming them into works of art!

 

TIMELINE 
 

Application Deadline: Saturday, October 24, 5pm
All participants must register a loan agreement (google form) with Maryland Art Place HERE

Saturday, November 7: Auction Launch 10am

Friday, November 13: Auction closes 10pm
 

The silent auction to view and bid on masks will be held November 7 from 10 a.m. - November 13 at 10 p.m. Register today HERE

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MISSION: Maryland Art Place (MAP) inspires, supports, and encourages artistic expression through innovative programming, exhibitions, and educational opportunities while recognizing the powerful impact art can have on our community. MAP creates a dynamic environment for artists of our time to engage the public by nurturing and promoting new ideas. www.mdartplace.org

Masks provided by Jill Andrews with Quality Mask Supply 

 

 

Our Mission

Maryland Art Place (MAP) inspires, supports, and encourages artistic expression through innovative programming, exhibitions, and educational opportunities while recognizing the powerful impact art can have on our community. MAP creates a dynamic environment for artists of our time to engage the public by nurturing and promoting new ideas. MAP has served as a critical resource for contemporary art in the Mid-Atlantic since 1981.

Contact Us

Phone: 410.962.8565
E-mail: map@mdartplace.org

     
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