2010 Stutz Artists' Open House 

3 stars

Stutz Building

This year, like the last, the Stutz Artists' Open House presented a mixed bag in terms of the quality of the work shown. But this annual event, which features the more than 90 artists with studios in this former automobile manufacturing plant, is still a must for anyone who wants to take the temperature of the Indy arts scene. Certainly there was a wide range of work on hand—everything from Stutz Resident Lydia Burris' colorful fantasy landscape canvases and sculptural death heads to the tightly packed walls of Victoria Gillieron's studio space, where I found a somewhat off-kilter portrait of a woman with an oversized sword, quasi-impressionist takes on ballet dancers, and a golden-framed portrait of C.W. Mundy. I certainly got the impression, as I walked through the Stutz last Friday night, that impressionist-style landscapes do a good business in this town. But selling doesn't necessarily mean selling out. Jerry Points, for example, is a painter who builds on Impressionism with his own style that owes something to his previous history as a graphic designer. Of course, there was more than just art going on at the Open House. There was plenty of wine and cheese and pesto torts from which to partake in just about every studio. There was also flavored vodka being served at the studio of Susan D. Brewer, who doubles as a bar manager at Meridian (indicative of how many in the Indy arts community wear two or more hats). Brewer's abstract diptych canvas "Two are One" was inspired by Stutz Open House featured performer Cynthia Layne who was hand with her band Friday night performing her all-original (and very funky, very groovy) R&B compositions.

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