‘Folk Modern’ exhibit blends traditional and fine art

Going to the airport during the holidays? Escape the hustle-bustle on the third floor, where you can
Quilt-inspired geometric images, acrylic on panel, by Matt LaFleur.
Quilt-inspired geometric images, acrylic on panel, by Matt LaFleur.

Going to the airport during the holidays?

Escape the hustle-bustle on the third floor, where you can watch the planes take off and look at artwork at the same time.

The current exhibit is “Folk Modern,” a group show by eight artists who make works that blend traditional handiwork and fine art.

John McQueen of Saratoga Springs creates intricate woven sculptures from willow branches he gathers in his backyard.

Susanna Starr makes lacey cutouts from wood veneer that look like supersized versions of the the doilies you remember from your grandma’s parlor.

The Albany International Airport Gallery is open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily, and you don’t have to go through security to get there.

Admission is free.

Interested in looking at art in other airports?

At www.stuckattheairport.com, you can read about a show at the Philadelphia International Airport that features hundreds of toys, including “Star Wars” figures and Barbies.

Last minute gifts?

While you’re at the airport, go shopping at DepARTure, a unique boutique that sells hand-crafted gifts, artwork and books from more than 60 regional museums and cultural institutions.

DepARTure, which you’ll find on the first floor, next to baggage claim, is open today, Christmas Eve, from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

It’s closed on Christmas Day but opens again on Saturday and returns to its regular hours, which are 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. daily.

Violins instead of drums

Children with autism reveal their creativity in “Spectral Beauty,” a new exhibit at Go! World Awareness Children’s Museum in Glens Falls.

“We wanted to celebrate the talents that those children have with a unique art exhibit,” says museum director Heather E. Hickland.

Artists in the exhibit range in age from 6 to 18 and live in Warren County, Saratoga County and all across the country.

“We did get one submission from overseas, from Sri Lanka,” Hickland says.

For “Spectral Beauty,” which opened Dec. 17 and runs into May, the museum refreshed sections of its 3,300 square feet of interactive play space to make it more welcoming to children with sensory sensitivities.

“We have supplies in our art room that are more tactile. We have a new light table,” she says.

The World Music Room, which has always been filled with percussion instruments from around the world, has changed.

“For those children who had sensory sensitivities, we had got some feedback that the noise level from there could be a little overwhelming. We’ve installed new instruments from our collection that are stringed instruments. There’s a softer sound and a more contained sound but still as much fun.”

Two new interactive sections focus on money conversion.

“If you travel some place, the money might be different. We have a magnetic interactive where kids have to sort money from different countries. We also have a small international market for them to shop in, where all the items are priced in different currencies.”

A quiet corner of the museum was also set up, where noise-canceling headphones are available.

“There are estimates that as many as 1 in 6 children are impacted by sensory sensitivities, whether it be autism, ADD, ADHD or information processing disorder. Even young children, as they develop, can struggle with these,” says Hickland.

“Spectral Beauty” is the third new exhibit, also called an Experience Project, presented this year, following “Cars, Trains and Things That Go” and “Technologies Around the World.”

“The goal for them is to shift their experience when kids come to the museum, just a little. It’s very similar to the way your experience shifts a bit when you travel to a new country.”

The next Experience Project, opening in the summer, will explore the culture of Brazil.

“It will have a component that focuses on the Olympics,” she says.

For more information, go to www.worldchildrensmuseum.org or phone 793-2773.

During the holidays, the museum will be open Saturday through Wednesday and Jan. 2 and 3, with special school vacation programs Monday through Wednesday.

Reach Gazette reporter Karen Bjornland at 395-3197, [email protected] or on Twitter @bjorngazette.

Categories: Entertainment

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