Results tagged “Saturday series” from ARTicles

This is part of a series on people and organizations that make it possible for artists' work to be made and presented.

Robert Lyons Ohio Theatre.jpg

It was 9:30 at night when Robert Lyons ducked out of rehearsal at the Ohio Theatre, on Wooster Street in New York's Soho, to get some coffee. He's a big guy, 6 feet 4 inches tall, so walking unaccompanied to the deli should not have been a problem. But it was the late 1980s, and Soho then wasn't what Soho has become; for one thing, there were still delis to go to. There was no Barneys Co-Op on the next block, no Trump hotel-condominium sales office just up the cobblestoned street. There wasn't the pervasive sense of safety.

So when he returned a few minutes later with his coffee and saw four guys with broomsticks walking by, his impulse was to close the door to the Ohio and stand in front of it, as if he were protecting the theater. "And they just circled around me, and they wanted my money," Lyons recalled yesterday, sitting at a café table in the theater's lobby as the rain came down outside. "They all kind of hit me at the same time, and then somebody down the street yelled, and then they all ran, so they didn't even get my wallet. But my chin split open, and so blood was pouring down." At 50, he still has the scar.

March 13, 2010 5:51 PM |

This is the first in a series on people and organizations that make it possible for artists' work to be made and presented.

If there were such a thing as an ideal moment for a small, experimental arts group to find itself in temporary digs, trying to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars to pay for a new home and stabilize its finances, the Great Recession probably wouldn't be it. Nonetheless, that was the unlucky timing of San Francisco visual arts organization Southern Exposure, which had decamped in 2006 from its longtime space, expecting to return after a seismic upgrade.

Instead, a series of delays foiled that plan, leaving it a nomad in the depths of the downturn, in a famously expensive city. But SoEx has been rooted in that city since 1974, and vulnerability did not turn into defeat. This past October, it finally moved into its new home: a sleek, 4,000-square-foot rented space in a gritty, industrial zone of the Mission District, kitty-corner from a pipe organ factory. The inaugural exhibition of commissioned work addressed a topic that must have been much on Southern Exposure's collective mind during those wandering years: "scenarios related to an uncertain and ever-shifting future."

March 6, 2010 2:24 PM |


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