Chasing the Moon in Gallery 209

Bryce Parr

Gallery 209 is currently hosting an art display with cosmic influence from three University of Wisconsin—Stout artists. The show, “moonchasers: spear v. lasso,” was conceived by studio art students Jacob Bluhm, Beck Slack and Anthony Clementi. The show is innately tied to the phases of the moon, and the artists plan to change it every two days. “The gallery will be breathing, evolving and adapting as the phases go on,” said Bluhm.

The group has been modifying the space since it opened last weekend. Paintings, sculptures and painted cans of Pabst Blue Ribbon, some still sealed, orbit a sand-filled Zen garden in the center of the room.

Bluhm, a final year student with a concentration in photography, is described by Clementi as the skeleton of the group. He originally reserved the space to display his own work in a solo exhibition. Slack, also with a concentration in photography, asked Bluhm if he was interested in sharing the space before the two asked sculpting student Clementi to join the collaboration.

Bluhm’s ideas on chasing the moon, or longing for things that appear unattainable, were the driving force behind the collaboration. “We thought we would never go to the moon, but now it’s like this jumping off point for the rest of infinity and the rest of space. Jacob’s idea is that seemingly impossible ambitions—once attained—can lead into infinity.” Clementi said.

Showing the dynamic nature of the display is a primary focus of the group. “Even if we say this is the theme, we don’t actually know where it’s going to go as we change it every few nights. [The garden] being the center of the room is the most grounding part, but even that could be [messed] with” Clementi said. “If we had a clean-cut plan, I feel like it wouldn’t be that fruitful of an experience. We can’t keep tabs on each other the whole time, so all that’s left is the display after our performance on a chaotic stage.”

The display is not for any class or credit. “It’s kind of an experiment with time and space. We don’t have to fit any themes from an institution, and it becomes something different for all of us.” Bluhm said.

The display comes down Thursday night, concluding on the first quarter of this month’s moon phase.