tag:jrkortman.com,2013:/posts J. R. Kortman Center for Design / Kortman Gallery 2024-06-07T21:51:30Z J. R. Kortman Center for Design tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/2114888 2024-06-07T21:51:30Z 2024-06-07T21:51:30Z Shop for cool gifts for your Dad at J.R. Kortman Center For Design...open Tu-Fr 11-6, Sa 11-5

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/2111949 2024-05-24T15:32:22Z 2024-05-24T23:32:13Z J.R. Kortman Center for Design & Kortman Gallery OPEN Tu-Fr 11-6, Sa 11-5

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/2107791 2024-05-05T16:22:29Z 2024-05-05T16:22:30Z Shop J.R. Kortman for a special gift for Mom: Tu-Fr 11-6, Sa 11-5

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/2103594 2024-04-14T15:33:07Z 2024-05-01T20:11:25Z Artist John Bell transforms nature’s relics into captivating bird sculptures for ArtScene Kortman exhibit
  
Rockford native John Bell sees inspiration for his work in nature’s fragments such as fallen tree branches, driftwood, or an abandoned wasp nest. Natural relics that he discovers become the found ingredients for creating unusual and captivating sculptures of birds.
Bell’s sculptures along with his evocative paintings will be featured in his solo exhibition, “John’s Birds” opening in the Kortman Gallery, Downtown Rockford (ArtScene weekend).
The unusual shapes and the colorful enhancements of Bell’s natural finds add to the eccentric characteristics of his sculptural birds giving them a sense of motion and fascination. The same sensibility in Bell’s sculptures can also be seen in his almost abstract paintings.
“I think of myself as a figurative artist whose work depicts birds as verbs rather than nouns,” says Bell. “While I always begin with a suggestive stick or particularly evocative brushstroke, the finished sculptures and paintings end up caring very little for my initial intentions. I choose to describe their own bodily limits and define their own space by pacing out the edges of their territory on the canvas or pedestal.”
   Bell, a Rockford native, shows his artwork in park districts, natural history museums, and the bed of his pick-up truck, primarily in the Midwest. He currently lives and works in St. Paul, Minnesota, with his wife, Alanna, two dogs, and cat.
“I hope my work can serve as a small reminder that life does not proceed rationally— it constantly reinvents itself, bubbling over any container that we try to put around it,” said Bell.
 Gallery director, Doc Slafkosky says this is third exhibition Bell has presented in the Kortman Gallery.
“John has shown his intriguing art with us in 2008 and 2012,” said Slafkosky. “His first show in our gallery was with his twin sister, Katie, who is also a successful artist now living in Brooklyn. The “John’s Birds” show follow’s his mom’s exhibit, “Silk Scenes” by Sarah Bell in the Kortman Gallery. It’s wonderful to see this much creativity and talent in one family!”
“John’s Birds” featuring sculptures & paintings by John Bell will open with receptions on  April 19th & 20th, Friday, 5 to 9pm & Saturday, 4 to 9m. upstairs in the Kortman Gallery, 107 North Main Street in Downtown Rockford. His exhibit will run through June 30th. J.R. Kortman Center for Design and Kortman Gallery are open Tuesday through Friday, 11am to 6pm and Saturdays, 11am to 5pm. 
The opening event and gallery are free and open to the public. For more information visit www.jrkortman.com or phone 815-968-0123.


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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/2095075 2024-03-07T21:15:00Z 2024-03-08T13:48:44Z "Silk Scenes," an exhibiton of wearble paintings by Sarah Bell in the Kortman Gallery now through April 13th  Store & Galley open Tuesday-Friday 11-6, and Saturday 11-5

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/2081559 2024-01-27T16:30:30Z 2024-03-08T13:49:04Z Rockford watercolor artist Sarah Bell creates wearable paintings for Kortman Gallery Exhibition…February 2-April 13, 2024

Sarah Bell has been a creative force in the art world in the Rockford area since the early 1970’s. She was not only an art educator with the Rockford Public Schools, but also has shown her elegant watercolor paintings in exhibitions throughout the region.
On Friday, February 2nd, Bell will present an exhibition of her new paintings titled “Silk Scenes” opening in the Kortman Gallery. However, these paintings are not her characteristic watercolors on paper, but created with colorful dyes on silk, culminating in captivating images on scarves.
“Even though my scarves are suitable for framing,” says Bell, “I really like to see them as wearable paintings on silk fabrics that are flowing and interactive.”
Since her background is watercolor, creating images on fabric was a straightforward transformation in technique for Bell.
“These paintings on silk are a natural transition for me,” said Bell.  “Applying silk dye to fabric does the same as wet paper, the dyes spread across the surface in the same manner. I begin with white fabric, draw lines using a liquid resist called gutta. The liquid dries and then acts as dams to hold the color in specific places.”
The result is amazing imagery on a one of a kind scarf that is not only an exciting fashion accessory, but a remarkable work of art.
“We are exhibiting the scarves on the gallery walls as we would traditional paintings,” says Kortman Gallery director Doc Slafkosky. “However, they are unmounted and unframed, allowing the viewer a chance to have not only a visual experience, but tactile interaction with the silk fabrics. Sarah created them with the idea that they are works of art that would be worn.”
“Silk Scenes” featuring paintings on silk by Sarah Bell opening reception is Friday, February 2nd from, 5:30 to 9pm upstairs in the Kortman Gallery, 107 North Main Street in Downtown Rockford. Her exhibit will run through April 13th. J.R. Kortman Center for Design and Kortman Gallery are open Tuesday through Friday, 11am to 6pm and Saturdays, 11am to 5pm. 

The opening event and gallery are free and open to the public. For more information visit phone 815-968-0123. 

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/2071129 2024-01-05T22:48:40Z 2024-03-05T18:52:04Z J.R. Kortman Center for Design is open Tuesday - Friday 11a-6p, Satuday 11a-5p

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/2068662 2023-12-30T21:44:30Z 2023-12-30T21:44:31Z Happy New Year from J.R. Kortman! Store open Tuesday-Friday 11a-6p, Satuday 11a-5p

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/2066298 2023-12-25T20:16:13Z 2023-12-25T20:16:13Z J.R. Kortman will be closed Christmas Day & Boxing Day (Dec 25 & 26). We will return to regular hours on Wednesday, Dec 27

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/2060356 2023-12-09T15:00:28Z 2023-12-22T19:59:01Z J.R. Kortman Center for Design open Monday-Friday 11-6, Saturday 11-5, and Sunday 1-5 ‘til Christmas...Sunday, CHRISTMAS EVE 11-5

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/2057684 2023-12-02T20:53:27Z 2023-12-22T13:24:54Z J.R. Kortman open 7 days a week in Decmber until Christmas: Mo-Fr 11-6, Sa 11-5, Su 1-5

Two Downtown Rockford historic buildings which will going under transformative renovation have bee selected as this years new ornaments added to the Rockford Landmark Ornament collection at J.R. Kortman Cents for Design at 107 North Main Street.
    The Iconic Building (formerly the Rockford News Tower) and the Times Theater are now part this of unique collection of hand painted ornaments that have been created for J.R. Kortman of local landmarks since 1997.
    “Both the Iconic Building and the Times Theater have exciting proposed plans to be reenergised into venues that will be great entertainment and cultural assets to our Downtown that can be enjoyed by residents and visitors alike,” said Doc Slafkosky, co-owner at J.R. Kortman.  ‘We thought this was a perfect time to recognize these two Art Deco inspired landmarks.”
    Other recent additions to the Landmark Collection include the Elks Lodge, the Embassy Suites Hotel, Coronado Theatre and the Rockford Armory. All are on Main Street and are official Registered National Landmark.
    Alexander Liberman’s “Symbol” sculpture in Sinnissippi Park along the river is by far the best selling ornament of all other buildings and places that have been made into ornaments since we started commissioning them back in 1997, said Slafkosky.  “It really has become Rockford’s definitive landmark!”
    Rockford Landmark Ornament Collection also includes the Prairie Street Brewhouse, East and West High Schools, St. Anthony Church, two views of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Laurent House, a special edition of Memorial Hall, the Beattie Park Gazebo, the Faust Landmark Building, the “Y” Log Lodge, Burpee Natural History Museum, Anderson Gardens, and Midway Theater Building.
       In addition to the Swedish Historical Society’s Erlander Home, other historic houses in the collection include the  “Limestone Mansion,” home to the Community Foundation of Northern Illinois, and the “Cobblestone House,” located at 2127 Broadway, one of Rockford’s oldest houses.    
    All the Landmark ornament images are individually hand-painted on the inside of a glass sphere, utilizing an ancient Chinese technique originally applied to “snuff” bottles. Each collectable ornament is a miniature work of art.
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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/2047368 2023-11-11T22:56:22Z 2023-11-12T22:21:18Z 25 Rockford artists celebrate Symbol’s 45th anniversary in Kortman Gallery “red” holiday exhibit

The late Alexander Liberman was well renowned in the world of art and design. Besides being  art director for Vogue Magazine, he was an accomplished artists in his own right, creating both paintings and sculptures that are now in collections in places around the world. And one of those places is Rockford!
His iconic “Symbol” sculpture is celebrating its 45th anniversary as a major piece of public art. It had a controversial start when it was placed on the east end of the State Street mall, dedicated in 1978 by Liberman, himself. Although, controversy still haunts the piece, most Rockfordians have developed an acceptance, and many, even an affection for this grand work of art.
In many of his works, Liberman used the color red…a specific red he created known as Liberman Red…which is the authentic color of “Symbol.” 
To celebrate the sculpture’s 45th anniversary, the Kortman Gallery has invited 25 Rockford artists to create a piece of art utilizing Liberman Red in their work. The exhibition which opens Friday, November 17th in the Kortman Gallery is appropriately titled, “Liberman Red.”
“I was intrigued about the theme of the show that is just about a color,” said John Deill, one of the featured artists in the exhibition. “Color can be both  captivating and controversial, since everyone perceives colors differently. For instance, some people see “Symbol” as red, while others see it as more orange. However, there is no right or wrong when it comes to perception.”
It is this relative and personal perception of color that was the inspiration behind the theme of the exhibition according to Doc Slafkosky, gallery director.
“Rather than have the exhibit specifically about Symbol, we thought we would not limit the subject matter to an object, but more of a concept…and the color red is in itself engaging, if not exciting,” said Slafkosky. “And Liberman used the color boldly, and often in his art. And he did have a specific formula for his ‘red’.”
“We thought it would interesting to let each artist create a piece of work that presents their interpretation of what Liberman Red looks like, with no restrictions on the imagery,” said Slafkosky. “Consequently the artists did not have to include images of “Symbol” in their art work, just the color, Liberman Red. The result is a fascinating exhibition that confirms the amazing creativity and vision that each of these remarkable artists brings to this must see show!”
Participating artists include: Stephen Warde Anderson, Molly Carter, John Deill, Michelle Dorr, Drew Eurek, Fatherless, Laura Gomel , Brian Hierstein, Margret Hynes, Javier Jimenez, Lisa Jimenez, Carrie Johnson, Jeremy Klonicki, Norm Knott, R. Scott Long, Jenny Mathews, Nancie King Mertz, Valerie Olafson, Rebecca Downing Pelley, Nick Cashmere, Joe Tallman, Carmen Turner, Alison Weust, Brett Whitacre, and Kyle Wolfe. 
The opening reception for “Liberman Red” featuring works by 25 Rockford artists is Friday, November 17th from 5:30 to 9pm upstairs in the Kortman Gallery, 107 North Main Street in Downtown Rockford. This special holiday group exhibition exhibit will run through January 13th, 2024. J.R. Kortman Center for Design & Kortman Gallery are open Tuesday through Friday, 11am to 6pm and Saturdays, 11am to 5pm. The opening event and gallery are free and open to the public. For more information visit www.jrkortman.com or phone 815-968-0123.








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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/2030917 2023-09-30T19:11:34Z 2023-10-27T03:07:00Z Emerging Rockford artist Dysen White exhibits expressive, urban art paintings in Kortman Gallery: Opening October 6-7

    Urban or Independent Art has spontaneous, expressive, and sometimes chaotic imagery heavily influenced by street art and graffiti. Dysen White, a young and emerging artist, paints with these same sensibilities adding his personal vision and experiences to his art.
    The results are captivating, exciting, and colorful works of art.
    White’s paintings are featured in a premier exhibition titled, “Odyssey: The Teen” which opens Friday, October 6th, Fall ArtScene, in the Kortman Gallery Downtown Rockford.
    “Artist and art educator Kyle Wolfe introduced us to Dysen’s work which immediately impressed us with its highly expressive, stimulating imagery that is both honest and energizing,” said Kortman Gallery director. “Dysen could be characterized as a naive artist, however his deliberate, yet spontaneous approach to his imagery gives his work an urbane vibe that I’m sure will mature as he continues to learn and grow as an artist.”
    Kyle Wolfe who is Dysen’s teacher at Roosevelt High School, has also become his mentor.
     “I teach digital art, but have also worked in traditional art forms,” says Kyle.  “Dysen’s artistic prowess with painting is self taught. He seems to have a compulsion for painting that is remarkable. He is a prolific artist, always creating and evolving which is refreshing to see in a person his age.”
    “Odyssey: The Teen” featuring paintings by Dysen White opening receptions are Friday, October 6th, 5:00 to 9pm and Saturday, October 7th, 3:00 to 9pm (Fall ArtScene) upstairs in the Kortman Gallery, 107 North Main Street in Downtown Rockford. His exhibit will run through November 11th. J.R. Kortman Center for Design and Kortman Gallery are open Tuesday through Friday, 11am to 6pm and Saturdays, 11am to 5pm.
    The opening event and gallery are free and open to the public. For more information visit www.jrkortman.com or phone 815-968-0123.
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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1991761 2023-06-23T22:26:47Z 2023-09-03T23:16:52Z Rockford artist Braydon Letsinger exhibits compelling portrait paintings in Kortman Gallery...opening June 30th! Exhibition runs thru September 30th

Originally pursuing a career path in criminal justice, Rockford artist Braydon Letsinger’s plans changed when he felt called to formally use and pursue his gifts of art-making. As a Studio Arts major, he has created an intriguing body of works that are featured in an exhibition with an equally intriguing title. Letsinger’s “Staring at Strangers: becoming acquainted with humanity through portraiture” opens Friday, June 30th in the Kortman Gallery.
    HIs compelling paintings combine traditional, realistic portraiture with geometric, abstract patterns in conjunction with contemporary materials like holographic film, fluorescent paint, and aluminum panels.
    “All of my work focuses on what I consider to be the most interesting, but most confusing subject – people and their inner workings,” said Letsinger. “For me, portraiture has been a way to break down barriers to more deeply understand others around me, and to begin to connect my viewers with these painted ‘strangers’ who are more similar to them than they realize.”
    Letsinger approached the Kortman Gallery more than a year ago with a portfolio of his work says gallery director, Doc Slafkosky. “The caliber of Braydon’s work showed that he was a serious, and most certainly, talented, aspiring artist,” said Slafkosky. “His unique combination of traditional realist painting with modern, colorful imagery is approachable, while still honoring the painting tradition and keeping his work relevant and fresh.”
    The majority of Letsinger’s somber-faced subjects were fellow students and faculty from Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas, where he completed his arts degree. His captivating work utilizes the combination of classic realistic portraits of these “strangers” with abstract, geometric elements to speak into the character of his subjects and humanity as a whole.
    “Staring at Strangers” featuring paintings by Braydon Letsinger opening reception is Friday, June 30th from 5:30 to 9pm upstairs in the Kortman Gallery, 107 North Main Street in Downtown Rockford. His exhibit will run through September 30th. J.R. Kortman Center for Design & Kortman Gallery are open Tuesday through Friday, 11am to 6pm and Saturdays, 11am to 5pm. The opening event and gallery are free and open to the public. For more information phone 815-968-0123.

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1984754 2023-06-06T19:05:40Z 2023-09-03T23:17:05Z Shop J.R. Kortman Center for Design for Graduations & Father's Day Tuesday-Friday 11-6, & Satuday 11-5

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1966282 2023-04-15T20:14:14Z 2023-05-23T17:12:25Z New Art Book launch and Art Zone TV series reboot in Kortman Gallery Exhibit...now through June 17th
 

  “Celebrating the creative spirit of artists, artisans, and craftsman who inspire, elevate, and enrich…” These words, on the back cover of a new art book, “Collection,” by Doc Slafkosky and Jerry Kortman, express the motivation behind this colorful, “cocktail table” edition.
    The new book is a visual journal of fine art and artifacts from Rockford and beyond. It will be introduced this ArtScene weekend, April 21st & 22nd in the Kortman Gallery.  This multi media exhibition will feature art posters from works by Rockford artists in the collection, plus a vibrant video presentation of scenes from the original 1990’s Art Zone TV series.
    Works by Maggie Thienemann, Betsy Youngquist, John Libowski, Cherri Rittenhouse, Jim Julin, Jacob Polhill, Robin McCauley, Lisa Jimenez, and Brian Hierstein are some of the featured images in the art poster exhibit.
    “Jerry and I have always thought we should document our art collection,” said Doc Slafkosky, the book’s coauthor and director of the Kortman Gallery. “We have hundreds of works of art by Rockford artists that we’ve been collecting for more than 50 years that not many people have had a chance to see.”
    “During covid, we spent a great deal of time at home which provided an opportunity to capture our collection in photographs,” Slafkosky continues. “We started to realize our collection represented a sort of history of art in the Rockford area…illustrating how the visual arts evolved in the community over the years.”
    Jerry Kortman started collecting in the 1960’s and the collection grew substantially after he and Slafkosky opened J.R. Kortman Center for Design and the Kortman Gallery in 1986.
“Rockford has so many amazing artists now, and in the past,” said Kortman. “This book and exhibition of art images, along with Art Zone videos should be quite an educational and entertaining experience. It is truly a retrospective look at the arts in Rockford covering more than  a half-century.”
     The Art Zone was a TV series, co-produced by Doug Connell and Kevin Cronin of Engine Studios. The show aired weekly on Rockford Cablevision from 1991-99, covering the arts, artists, and art events that took place in Rockford. Nearly 40 episodes were produced which included interviews with artists and performers, capturing on location, art openings, RSO events, New American Theater, Rockford Dance Company, Rockford Art Museum and more.
    The original episodes have been remastered and are now available on You Tube.
    “The collection of Art Zone shows is a rare, and amazing, look into a decade where the arts really began to blossom in Rockford,” says Connell, producer and technical director. 
     “The 1990’s was the last decade of the 20th Century and there was was so much optimism and enthusiasm in the Rockford arts community…and this TV series really captures that excitement,” said Holli Connell of Engine Studios.
   “Collection,” book launch, poster exhibition, and Art Zone reboot opens in the Kortman Gallery on Friday, April 21st, 5 to 9pmand Saturday, 11am to 6pm, Spring ArtScene weekend. The gallery is located upstairs at J. R. Kortman Center for Design, 107 North Main Street in Downtown Rockford. The exhibit is free, and open to the public. The exhibition will run though June 17th, 2023. For more information call 815-968-0123  

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1935679 2023-01-31T23:02:26Z 2023-04-03T13:39:12Z Penny McGuire and Summer Wagner exhibit ‘photography reimagined’ in Kortman Gallery, now through April 15th!

  

 Rockford artists Penny McGuire and Summer Wagner capture their images through the lens of a camera. However, their creative energy goes beyond the subsequent photograph. They both reimagine their photographs and create images that offer a unique perspective that defines their art.
    The engaging images from each these photographers will be presented in the Kortman Gallery in “Photography reimagined,” an exhibition opening Friday, February 10th in the Kortman Gallery, Downtown Rockford.
    In her photographs, Penny McGuire is drawn to architecture, landscape and still life images.
    “I started experimenting with different settings on my 12 yr old Sony Cybershot to find different ways to record the images I saw”, says McGuire. “I am drawn to architecture, outdoor art and odd things as they relate to their natural environment and to each other.  Many of my photos are several different photos of the same shot in different modes.”
    Most of McGuire’s images in this show are primarily Rockford-related with a few eccentric still life’s and historic sites around the Midwest artistically enhanced to interject her expressive perspective to the photograph.
    After living in Los Angeles for ten years, the pandemic brought Summer Wagner back to Rockford, where she had spent much of her childhood.   
    Wagner’s images offer an extraordinary departure from what can be seen through the lens of a camera alone. Her photographs are ethereal fantasy of people in romantic, yet provocative settings that she visually creates.
    “My work contemplates the spiritual and psychological threads of everyday life and the blur of poetry that is our society's collective dreamscape,” writes Wagner in her artist’s statement.
    Doc Slafkosky, Kortman gallery director says these two artists were chosen because of the entirely different approaches they bring to photography.
    “Not only do Penny and Summer represent different generations, but their artistic vision also represents a different kind of photographic imagery,” said Slafkosky. They both, in some way, reimagine their photographs, but their style and subject matter are so different, that the contrast makes for an engaging and visually entertaining exhibition.”
    Meet the artists at the Kortman Gallery opening reception for “Photography reimagined,” featuring works by Penny McGuire and Summer Wagner Friday, February 10th from 5:30 to 9pm.  The gallery is located upstairs at J. R. Kortman Center for Design, 107 North Main Street in Downtown Rockford. The exhibit is free, and open to the public. The exhibition will run though April 25th, 2023. For more information call 815-968-0123 or visit www.jrkortman.com.


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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1927384 2023-01-10T18:36:18Z 2023-03-26T19:45:08Z J.R. Kortman Center for Design is open Tuesday-Friday 11am to 6pm, and Satuday 11am to 5pm

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1924692 2023-01-03T20:50:12Z 2023-01-03T20:50:13Z J.R. Kortman is open Tuesday-Friday 11am to 6pm, and Satuday 11am to 5pm

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1919072 2022-12-21T23:43:43Z 2022-12-22T23:39:44Z Shop J.R Kortman Tu-Fr 11-6, Saturday (Christmas Eve) 11-5...closed Sunday & Monday Dec. 25-26

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1912178 2022-12-03T22:23:36Z 2022-12-03T22:23:36Z J.R. Kortman now OPEN 7 days a week 'til Christmas: M-F 11-6, Sa 11-5, Su 1-5

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1902704 2022-11-12T23:00:20Z 2022-11-12T23:00:20Z 26 Artists reimagine chairs as art in Kortman Gallery holiday group exhibition opening Friday, Nov. 18th!
  

 Chairs have been a part of every day life since the dawn of civilization. They have evolved from not only a purely functional piece of furniture, but also a statement of design, social strata, and comfort. For centuries the chair has appeared in works of art from ancient Egyptian scroll paintings  to works by classical masters to modern day paintings and sculpture.
     Kortman Gallery has invited twenty-six artists who work in different styles and media to create works of art inspired by the chair. The exhibition titled, “Sit. Chairs as Art” opens Friday, November 18th from 5:30 to 9pm in the downtown Rockford Kortman Gallery.
    “All twenty-five of these imaginative, accomplished artists have created works that either visually depict a chair in a painting, ceramics, photography, or sculpture…and some are actually functional chairs,” said gallery director Doc Slafkosky.
    Clay artist Lynn Fischer-Carlson said she welcomes the challenge of creating a piece for a show that has a designated theme.
    “It compels you to apply your artistic skills often in different ways,” says Fischer-Carlson. “You want to participate in the theme without sacrificing your own aesthetic vision or style.”
    One of the inspirations for this exhibition was to recognize the 20th anniversary of the creation of “The Big Chair” by Rockford artist, Jim Julin who passed away in 2012.
    “Jim created the chair for a Kortman Gallery exhibit in 2002,” said Slafkosky. “He built the large scale sculpture to honor his Rockford Swedish furniture manufacturing heritage. The Big Chair was placed on the then downtown mall in front of our gallery. It was acquired by Lon and Dick Behr and donated to the Rockford Art Museum’s sculpture garden where it stands tall today on North Main Street.”    
    Participating artists include Zoa Ace, Stephen Warde Anderson, Lynn Fischer-Carlson, Molly Carter, Jesus Correa, John Deill, Michelle Dorr, Fatherless, Roni Golan, Laura Gomel, Brian Hierstein, Jane Peterson Hooker, Lisa Jimenez , Carrie Johnson, Jeremy Klonicki, Jenny Mathews, Robin McCauley, Nancie King Mertz, Valerie Olafson, Jacob Polhill, Jane Weis Proudfoot, Louis Recchia, Joe Tallman, Alison Weust, Brett Whitacre, and Kyle Wolfe.
    Meet the artists at the Kortman Gallery opening reception for “Sit. Chairs as Art,” a holiday group exhibition is  Friday, November 18th from 5:30 to 9pm.  The gallery is located upstairs at J. R. Kortman Center for Design, 107 North Main Street in Downtown Rockford. The exhibit is free, and open to the public. The exhibition will run though January 14th, 2023. For more information call 815-968-0123.


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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1896382 2022-10-28T18:44:10Z 2022-10-28T18:45:42Z J.R Kortman Center forDesign is OPEN: Tu-Fr 11-6, Sa 11-5..."Imaginary Friends," new works by Kyle Wolfe is now on exhibit in the Kortman Gallery thru Nov. 12

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1891561 2022-10-16T23:27:15Z 2022-10-16T23:27:15Z J.R. Kortman CLOSED for VACATION Oct. 17-26!

The store and gallery will be CLOSED October 17th through October 26th for VACATION! We will resume normal hours on Thursday, October 27th. Looking forward to seeing you when we return!

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1887357 2022-10-05T22:51:34Z 2022-10-08T18:24:17Z Rockford artist Kyle Wolfe introduces his “Imaginary Friends” in multi media, interactive exhibit in Kortman Gallery...opening October 14th

 

 

 Growing up, Kyle Wolfe was always attracted to visually charged toys, video games, comics, and pop culture objects from the past. With a natural talent for art, he cultivated his artistic talent and curiosity that lead to a career not only as a multimedia visual artist, but an art educator.
    On Friday, October 14th Wolfe brings his extraordinary visual, interactive new works to the Kortman Gallery in an exhibit he calls, “Imaginary Friends.” The opening receptions, coincide with this year’s ArtSene weekend on Friday, October 14 from 5-9pm and  and Saturday, October 15, 4- 9pm.
    Wolfe’s imaginative, innovative exhibit includes painting with acrylics or oil, on recently rediscovered found objects from his past like skateboards, shoes, and even telephone. His attraction to comics, video games and the visual culture of his youth is also the inspiration for digital and print work that will also be featured in this exhibit.
    “My approach to creating has always been evolving,” says Wolfe. “I’m at point in my career where I feel the freedom to create in any way that moves me. This show has given me the opportunity to let go of control and express myself in multiple media utilizing anything that inspires me to become my canvas.”
    Since his personal relationship to the imagery of pop culture was such an important part of his early life, he relates to his newly created visual images as his “imaginary friends.” Some of his art makes references to known characters like Pac-man, Muppets characters, etc. while other creatures in his eye-popping, colorful works are pure fantasy.
    Many of his pieces will include an interactive QR code along side that will enhance and engage the viewers experience.
    “This is going to be a fun and entertaining exhibit for all ages,” said Doc Slafkosky, Kortman Gallery director. “This is not just paintings on the wall. You will have a great time exploring the imagination and creative spirit of this expressive and inspired artist.”
    This is Kyle Wolfe’s second solo exhibit in the Kortman Gallery. His first show in 2010 featured digital works called “A Thousand Words” creating images from visual fragments he created on the computer. Wolfe, a graduate of Northern Illinois University, teaches art in the Rockford Public Schools at Roosevelt High School.
    “Imaginary Friends,” new works by Kyle Wolfe opens Friday, October 14th from 5 to 9pm and Saturday, October 15th from 4 to 9pm upstairs in the Kortman Gallery, 107 North Main Street in Downtown Rockford. His exhibit will run through November 12th. J.R. Kortman Center for Design & Kortman Gallery are openTuesday to Friday, 11am to 6pm and Saturdays, 11 to 5pm. For more information visit www.jrkortman.com of phone 815-968-0123


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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1871001 2022-08-20T19:27:00Z 2022-08-20T20:02:08Z Shop J.R. Kortman Center for Design: Tu-Fr 11-6, Sa 11-5...See "Botanic Flourish," paintings by Valentina Fedoseeva & Jenny Mathews upstairs in the Kortman Gallery

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1857727 2022-07-20T19:39:45Z 2022-07-23T15:42:15Z Nature flourishes on canvas as two Rockford artists present colorful floral paintings in Kortman Gallery exhibition opening July 29th
 
  "Color is a power which directly influences the soul,” says emerging Rockford artist Valentina Fedoseeva quoting Wassily Kandinsky.
    “Telling universal stories, is how I like to highlight the magical elements in our shared culture,” says Rockford artist Jenny Mathews.
    These two exuberant artists are teaming up in an expression of the colorful beauty of nature in “Botanic Flourish,” an exhibition of floral paintings opening Friday, July 29th in the Kortman Gallery, Downtown Rockford.
    “Both Mathews and Fedoseeva have an artistic gift to create works that have universal appeal because of their classic painterly styles,” says Kortman gallery director Doc Slafkosky.  “Jenny introduced me to not only the idea for this show, but also to Valentina, a newcomer to the Rockford art community.”
    Valentina Fedoseeva was born and raised in Moldavia. Her work is influenced by her travel experiences that heave taken her to such colorful cultures as India and Central America. Nature is her inspiration as most of her works captures imagery such as flowers, botanicals, and landscapes.
    “I love nature very much! It's the main source of my inspiration. Shapes, colors, and motifs are collected grain by grain in my subconscious,” said Fedoseeva.  “When I enter the studio, something huge, something that cannot be described in words, seems to take possession of me.”
    Jenny Mathews is a well-known and accomplished Rockford artist. She has exhibited work in a galleries and museums throughout the region including a 2019 solo exhibit in the Kortman Gallery. She is best known for her public art murals that have graced the Rockford urban landscape for years…her latest in Rockford’s North End above the Norwegian Restaurant at 1402 North Main.
    “I enjoy creating small paintings and illustrations as much as large public murals,” said Mathews. “My artistic vision is driven by my love for bringing people together and my work aims to be the catalyst of a shared experience.”
    Kortman Gallery opening reception for “Botanic Flourish,” an exhibition of floral paintings by Valentina Fedoseeva and Jenny Mathews opens Friday, July 29th from 5:30 to 9pm.  The gallery is located upstairs at J. R. Kortman Center for Design, 107 North Main Street in Downtown Rockford. The exhibit is free, and open to the public..
    “Botanic Flourish” will run though September 30th. For more information call 815-968-0123.


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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1852702 2022-07-08T22:25:41Z 2022-07-08T22:28:00Z Shop at J.R. Kortman Center for Design Tu-Fr 11-6, Sa 11-5/See "Amorous,"group exhibit upstairs in the Kortman Gallery extended thru July 22nd

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1841954 2022-06-14T19:34:08Z 2022-06-14T19:54:37Z Shop at J.R. Kortman Center for Design Tu-Fr 11-6, Sa 11-5/See "Amorous,"group exhibit upstairs in the Kortman Gallery thru June 30
From Alessi designed by the late Virgil Abloh, the international design & fashion genius and Rockford native...
A new approach to designing tableware, Occasional Object is a stainless steel cutlery set consisting of a spoon, fork, knife and a carabiner to attach all three together, either in the context of a new way of setting the table, or as a means of attaching these utensils to the body. A new take on cutlery in a limited edition of 999 numbered pieces.
The set features geometric forms and an aesthetic closer to that of work tools than of table settings. It’s the first of a series of ‘Occasional Objects’, which will be joined by more pieces, including ceramics, tableware and a new interpretation by Vigil Abloh of an Alessi classic.
Available by special order @ J.R. Kortman Center for Design




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J. R. Kortman Center for Design
tag:jrkortman.com,2013:Post/1825064 2022-04-30T20:09:56Z 2022-06-09T18:55:00Z Shop at J.R. Kortman Center for Design Tu-Fr 11-6, Sa 11-5/See "Amorous,"group exhibit upstairs in the Kortman Gallery thru June 30

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J. R. Kortman Center for Design