BALTIMORE — An immersive theater experience based on the brooding writing of Edgar Allan Poe is reopening a historic Baltimore house that has been closed for a decade.
Baltimore’s McKeldin Fountain, a fixture of the city’s inner harbor since water started cascading down its tiered basins in 1982, may soon be demolished.
Many neighborhoods of stately row houses that rose along the East Coast late in the 19th century have declined into decay, or been torn down entirely. Yet sometimes there’s one solitary holdout standing tall and proud, its neighbors long since demolished.
Last spring, the Contemporary Museum in Baltimore shut down suddenly, mid-exhibition, without warning to its director, staff, or artists. More than a year later, the Baltimore City Paper reported the Contemporary’s return. And last week, the museum’s new website went live, along with a welcome letter sent out from the institution’s new director, Deana Haggag.
All visitors to the American Visionary Art Museum get their hands stamped with a singe gazing blue eye, the logo for the museum that focuses on self-taught artists who use their work as an avenue for their personal vision. But while it’s an institution devoted to the inner voice, the museum is hardly an introverted place. In fact, its exterior is an overwhelming jumble of mosaics, strange sculptures embedded in the garden or riding motorcycles on the roof, and even a gold “hand of god” reaching out from one side. I visited on a recent rainy afternoon and even though the weather was dreary, the art inside and out of the museum was a flurry of whimsy and gleeful, almost manic, creation.
Baltimore’s Contemporary Museum closed suddenly this month, shutting down in the middle of an exhibition run and posting a notice to announce the decision a few days later.
“More than 10,000 items in the Walters Art Museum — about a third of the total collection — can now be viewed and downloaded online for free, without copyright restrictions.” [Baltimore Sun]
Coming across a work by Gaia on the street is a special experience. His work is intelligent, emotional, well-executed, and informed by the wider world. He looks beyond pop culture, where most street art gets stuck. His linocut prints and drawings, often of animals, are beautifully rendered and react to the intensity of the urbanscape and its manmade fauna.