Bain Project Holds Forth Downtown
The Bain Project artists and supporters put together a huge bash on Martin Street and raised awareness of and funds for this fascinating and rapidly developing project. Ten artists, joined by three documenters, are transforming an abandoned historic Art Decco structure on South Wilmington, and making some great individual art along the way. Many of the individual responses were on display Saturday at 313 West Martin Street, a space provided by Clearscapes. The transformation of the 1940 water treatment plant will be on display the middle two weekends in May.
The big draw this weekend was the marathon music session, helpfully bannered at New Raleigh, which eventually drew a large evening crowd. The early afternoon acts were experimental and sparsely attended, but a truly amazing event took place at 4 PM. Benito Crawford, on the left below, devised and conducted a performance where the audience participated through a net interface. Crawford is a doctoral student in music at Duke, and the piece performed Saturday is part of his dissertation.
It was fantastic watching numerous people in the crowd getting their laptops ready, logging on to the website, and then offering their input into the outputs of the musicians and the synthesizers.
The evening music drew much larger crowds, but being generationally impaired, I spent most of my evening visit out in the front room with the Bain artists, who were rotating duties at the door, selling t-shirts and networking. There were small heavily layered iconic pieces from Marty Baird and Lee Moore, traditional oils from project leader Daniel Kelly, reflective collages on graph paper from Sarah Powers, a photo montage from Lia Newman, a piece of mail art from Stacey Kirby, and much more.
This project has picked up critical mass and velocity, and that was made clear on Saturday. Lots of energy, lots of fascinating work, and now a ground-breaking presentation of music in downtown. Go Bain!!
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