‘Plat du Jour: Art’ on the Menu for Kortman Gallery Holiday Group Exhibit opening Friday, Novmber 20th


          Plates are not only functional, but they have provided a medium for the decorative arts for thousands of years. They can be made from a myriad of materials, come in various shapes and sizes, and be passed on from one generation to the other. They serve as a conveyance for one of our most basic needs...food, yet they can be commemorative, collectible souvenirs, that celebrate places, people, and life events.
    The Kortman Gallery celebrates the plate as art in a holiday group exhibition featuring 40 artists who have created works of art on or about the plate. The show, titled “Plat du Jour: Art” presents plates and images of plates in a diverse range of artists and media, including painting, drawing, digital imagery, ceramics, and sculpture.
    “Souvenir and decorative plates have been around for a long time and collecting them was very popular in the 1950’s and 60’s,” says Doc Slafkosky, Kortman Gallery director. “That plate collecting trend is back, and taken on a more sophisticated flavor with more galleries and museums offering artist designed plates. We thought it would be great to see what some of Rockford’s most notable and prolific artists would create if inspired by this plate concept.”
    See what plate themed works created by 40  artists have created for this holiday group exhibit, “Plat du Jour: Art” which opens Friday, November 20th from 5:30 to 10pm in the Kortman Gallery located upstairs at J. R. Kortman Center for Design, 107 North Main Street in Downtown Rockford. It will be on display Monday through Saturday 10am to 6pm and Sundays (in December) noon to 5pm. The show runs through December 31st.
    Exhibiting artists include: Zoa Ace, Michelle Dorr, John Deill, Kyle Wolfe,  Becky Pelley, Brian Hierstein, Joanne Gustafson,  Sarah Danielle Stewart,  Johnathan Kuss, Paul Pinzarrone, Drew Helge, Norm Knott, Margret Hesler-Hynes, Javier Jimenez, R. Scott Long, Betsy Youngquist, Joseph Goral,Lisa Jimenez,Lynn Fischer Carlson, Dave Menard, Jesus Correa, Molly Carter, Pam Kehoe-Peterson, Sarah Reed-McNamara, Valerie Olafson, Karen Harding, Cherri Rittenhouse, Jarrod Hennis, Britney Lindgren, Michael Bugler, Leslie Arbetman,Matt Vincent, Jeremy Klonicki, Louis Recchia,  Jeanne Ludeke, Barry Treu, Michelle Dal Pra,  Stephen Warde Anderson, and Ellie Pinzarrone.
    .For more information call 815-968-0123 or visit www.jrkortman.com.

Preview the J.R. Kortman Holiday Jewelry Collection First Friday, Nov. 6th, 6-9pm upstairs in the Kortman Gallery!

First Friday, November 6th, Denise Glasenapp, Leah Budde, Nancy Froelich, Dana Glasenapp, & artist Lynn Fischer-Carlson will be modeling selections from the the J. R. Kortman Holiday Jewelry Collection. We have just returned from the Pearl & Jewelry markets in Shanghai and Beijing with new and exciting designs for you to see! Relax upstairs in the Kortman Gallery over a refreshing beverage served up by ace mixologist Dennis Horton while our beautiful models show off some of our newest and classic jewelry.

Rockford ceramic artist Lynn Fischer-Carlson's exhibit "Disguised: Portraits in Clay" continues through November 14th in Kortman Gallery

    When you hear the term pottery, the first images that come to mind are earth-toned vessels of functional shapes and sizes. However, Rockford ceramic artist and professor Lynn Fischer-Carlson takes you to a different visual realm with her clay works. They are narrative sculptures, portraits in clay that generate individual personalities that are colorful, quirky, humorous, and can even be disturbing.
    Fischer-Carlson’s exhibition “Disguised: Portraits in Clay" opens Fall ArtScene, Friday & Saturday October 2nd and 3rd, in the Kortman Gallery.
    “The ceramic heads in this Kortman exhibit deal with my observations of absurd human behaviors, awkward experiences and complicated relationships,” says Fisher-Carlson. “Often poignant, maybe disturbing or disguised, and definitely with double meanings, these ceramic sculptures have become explorations about people and their odd ways. The human experience always guarantees a full spectrum of situations and interactions.”
    Fischer-Carlson’s heads are stylized, simplified forms. She hand builds these sculptures using coils of clay, pinching and compressing them together. She then adds bits of clay to provide facial expressions and other attributes, including texture and color, which adds another layer of emotion, energy or reaction.
    Fischer-Carlson is a professor in the art department at Rock Valley College. She has a BFA from Illinois State University and earned her Masters of Fine Arts from NIU, both degrees in ceramics with an emphasis in art history.  She started and designed the ceramic art program at RVC. Throughout her 16 years at RVC she has been able to bring many aspects of art and culture to our community through teaching ceramics, providing lectures to various community groups and as a working artist.
    The Kortman Gallery exhibit “Disguised: Portraits in Clay” by Lynn Fischer-Carlson will open in conjunction with Fall ArtScene, Friday October 2nd, 5 to 10pm and Saturday, October 3rd, 3p to 9pm. It will be on display through November 14th.    Kortman Gallery is located upstairs at J. R. Kortman Center for Design, 107 North Main Street in Downtown Rockford. For more information call 815-968-0123 or visit www.jrkortman.com.

Lynn Fischer-Carlson's Quirky, Colorful Ceramic Works to be on exhibit in Kortman Gallery for Fall ArtScene

 Lynn Fischer - Carlson is a professor in the art department at Rock Valley College. She has a BFA from Illinois State University and she earned her Masters of Fine Arts from NIU, both degrees are in ceramics with an emphasis in art history.  She had the extreme privilege to have started and designed the ceramic art program at RVC.  Throughout her 16 years at RVC she has been able to bring many aspects of art and culture to our community through teaching ceramics, providing lectures to various community groups and as a working artist. See her new works opening Friday & Saturday, October 2nd & 3rd, ArtSene weekend upstairs in the Kortman Gallery.

J. R. Kortman invites you to Point! Bar at RAM's Greenwich Village Art Fair, September 19th & 20th

This Saturday & Sunday is Rockford Art Museum's Greenwich Village Art Fair/2015. Enjoy works by over 135 artists along the Rock River at Riverfront Museum Park. While at the fair, stop by Point Bar! presented by Kortman Gallery and enjoy a Love Lemon Martini, a blend of vodka. limoncello, and a splash of fresh lemonade garnished with a lemon slice pierced with a peppermint stick!...now a fair tradition...and new this year...Fresa Mojada Martini, a blend of strawberry run, tequila, finished with a splash of ginger ale and garnished with a fresh strawberry! Both cocktails are deliciously refreshing! And of course a selection of beer and wine and other popular drinks.
      We also want to invite you to the Point Bar! AFTER HOURS PARTY on Saturday evening from 5pm to 8pm...meet the artists, museum staff, and dance to music from DJ's Dan Minick & Eric Nofsinger. A splendid time is guaranteed for all!

J. R. Kortman & Alessi celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Juicy Salif by Philippe Starck

Not all squeezers are actually meant to squeeze. Perhaps the most famous example of this is the Juicy Salif, designed by Philippe Starck in 1990. It is considered an icon of industrial design that has been displayed in New York's Museum of Modern Art. It is manufactured by Italian kitchenware company Alessi. Its diameter is 14 cm, height 29 cm, and it is made from cast and polished aluminium. As the founder of the company Alberto Alessi recalls "I received a napkin from Starck, on it among some incomprehensible marks (tomato sauce, in all likelihood) there were some sketches. Sketches of squid. They started on the left, and as they worked their way over to the right, they took on the unmistakable shape of what was to become the juicy salif. While eating a dish of squid and squeezing a lemon over it, Starck drew on the napkin his famous lemon squeezer."

The 25th Anniversary limited edition Juicy Salif by Starck ( whick actually does function quite admirably as a juicer) is now available at J. R. Kortman Center for Design!

Fatherless artists open ‘Popstractions’ First Friday in the Kortman Gallery

“Popstractions” featuring energetic and colorful works by Fatherless will open in the Kortman Gallery, First Friday, September 4th from 5:30 to 10pm. Fatherless is a collaborative print posse from Rockford whose work is currently on exhibit at the Rockford Art Museum in an exciting and successful show called “Printmaker’s Ball.”
    “Our works are the result of 5 individual artists working cohesively with each other’s artwork,” says Fatherless artist Javier Jimenez.  “Described as a visual mix-tape of ‘shenagination,’ we combine our cultural influences in ways that finished works are not only unique to our collaboration, but unique among the editions of hand-screened prints as well...we make certain no two prints are ever the same.”
    Started as venture between Corey Hagberg, Jarrod Hennis, Javier Jimenez, and Greg Lang in the Spring of 2010, Fatherless began to plan seasonal shows in which they created screen prints together – live, during the event. When the idea came about to feature a guest artist for a series, they chose a local artist and instructor of printmaking to work with, and it was a natural fit. Dave Menard of Rockford University became a full time member following that show.
    “When the Fatherless artists are together the gallery is ignited with visual and spirited excitement,” says Kortman gallerist Doc Slafkosky. “There accessible work is filled with creative enthusiasm and spontaneity.”
    The Kortman Gallery exhibit “Popstractions” is like a satellite version of the Rockford Art Museum show, Printmaker's Ball, which features 14 printmakers pushing the boundaries of the art world by exploring new methods of printing and expression, from portable presses to complex installations, often addressing social and political issues head-on – and always leaving their skilled mark. Both exhibits will be on display through September 27th.
    Kortman Gallery is located upstairs at J. R. Kortman Center for Design, 107 North Main Street, just seven blocks south of the Rockford Art Museum.

Influential designer Philippe Starck's iconic designs available at J.R. Kortman Center for Design

Starck gazing...Philippe Starck is probably one of the most influential designers of the past 35 years. He has designed furniture, functional housewares, hotel and restaurant interiors, eyeware, and even a few iconic buildings along the way. We have often said that most of contemporary design is a footnote to Starck's genius. "It is not enough to make things of beauty; they must be good," write Starck. "A good object not only does the job, but also contains humor and love. A good object renders its service with grace." Here are some of his fascinating elegant and functional designs available @ J. R. Kortman. The last photos are of chairs (NFS) used in the Kortman Gallery and Jerry Kortman's glasses (also, NFS) all designed by Starck...