The Birdsell Project
It’s been nearly two months since The Birdsell Project’s first visual arts show opened. It’s focus, site-specific installation art. In that time nearly 1700 people have entered its massive, quarter-sawn oak doors. Some for the art, some for parties, some to view the mansion. Now it’s time to close…this show, but not the doors.
The Birdsell Project seeks to revitalize once abandoned spaces by opening them to artists and the community. That means putting a little time in. Talking to A LOT of people, brainstorming, dreaming, maybe crying….learning.
We first entered the space in September 2014. Since then we’ve had nearly 3000 people through the once vacant mansion. Though success can’t be measured strictly in numbers, it’s a good start. But just a start. There are still mountains of obstacles to traverse, many of which we haven’t begun to see. I think that’s part of the intrigue. The learning curve is steep and as a result each day is eye-opening.
We’ve got some big plans in the works, and though I don’t want to reveal everything here, I will says this: We will remain in the mansion for at least another six months.
This is where I attempt to persuade you to come to our Closing Reception held on Friday, February 13th. Though we’re planning our next chapter, we still need to make sure this one ends in such a way as to dovetail into it.
I could tell you what I think about the exhibit and what it means to me, but instead, I offer words from others, their thoughts on what The Birdsell Project offers. To you. To the community. To art.
The responses below are from members of our community. They are parents, teachers, artists, farmers, professors, students, all of the above and more. They are people that have been to the exhibit and attended our events. They are from people I’ve met at least once, some as a result of The Birdsell Project’s existence. As a result, they may be biased. In any event, take a look at what they had to say and consider investing $10 in what we’re doing by purchasing a ticket to the closing. Yes, it’s an investment. Possibly one of high-social impact. If you have any questions, let us know. firstname.lastname@example.org
*The Closing Reception will include food and wine as well as live music by Amateur Hour*
The Birdsell Project
“Sophisticated. Hip. Urban.”
“The first exhibit at Birdsell was Radical.”
“The perfect blend of urban decay and progressive art.”
“The best art installation I’ve seen in the entire state.
” The Birdsell Project is a thought-provoking collection of work worthy of a significant urban metropolis.”
” Some pieces remind a person (happily) of folk art, taking objects found in our daily lives and forming sometimes grotesque, sometimes subtly beautiful invitations to reflect on and question our world and ourselves. ”
” The exhibit was intimate and left a lot to the viewer’s imagination for interpretation”
” A great display of talent located in the city of South Bend!”
” A unique, new experience that has been a lot of fun!”
” The Birdsell Project has breathed new life into the regional art scene, establishing South Bend as the place to watch”
” Pretty amazing!!! Love the building….”
” The Birdsell Project juxtaposes the greatness of South Bend’s past, as evidenced by the expansive but decaying mansion that houses the project, with the bold, innovative, and creative art work of people that are living in our city that are not afraid to live in the now.”
” A great example of community partnership at its best”
” The Birdsell can not be justified with a couple of words, you have to see it to be amazed like my family was! (sorry I ended with was and I know that is wrong – but I am not good with the words)”
” Art and atmosphere.
Room to a view.
The Art House of South Bend.
A surprise at every turn.”
” Hard to believe it’s something in South Bend”
” The Birdsell project contained a variety of intriguing art forms in all mediums that kept the viewer interested and left to his/her own interpretation. Each room held a new artistic experience.”
“The Birdsell has been so enriched with creative energy that I believe it has become a sort of living organism. Don’t kill it!”
” An undiscovered treasure that is literally being brought back to life by talented local artists! A must see!”
” Art isn’t a question of external quality but one of internal content! #loveNAKED”
” Art. History.”
” It was only a dream of anyone who passed it. Until it became a thing of reality which surpassed it.”
” Creative use of space and time.”
” The South Bend region needs to support projects like the Birdsell in order to thrive over the next several decades. In other words: look people, South Bend needs to support stuff like this if it wants to be a place where people want to be. Which we need to be if we want to continuing being….”
“If you missed the Birdsell art Exhibit this January, you missed one of the coolest events the city has seen in years.”
” At the nexus of South Bend’s history and its future lives the Birdsell Project, a vibrant metaphor of the city’s rebirth.”
” Art grows out of and into all the imperfect and emerging spaces of our lives. Relish it!”
“Inspired and inspiring.”
” A labyrinth of freshness..”