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Oct. 27, 2014

The Galleries to host 21st annual People’s Art Show

By Nicole Drake

“People’s Art Show Drop-off, Enter Here,” a sign read, directing traffic into the back entrance of the gallery as participants walk through the door, stepping up the marble staircase.

A busy woman sits behind the submission desk as the artists line up in the empty room full of barren walls and transparent display cases awaiting to be showcased with student artwork.

Students who wish to witness some home-grown artwork can do so only a couple blocks away.
Thursday, Oct. 30, the walls of The Galleries at CSU will be visited by a new wave of upcoming and aspiring artists.Nicole Drake

The Galleries at CSU will be hosting its 21st annual People’s Art Show with an opening reception on Thursday, Oct. 30 from 5-8 p.m.

The exhibition will run through Thursday, Dec. 4. Call for entries was held on Friday, Oct. 17 and Saturday, Oct. 18.

This specific art show is open to all students on campus with a passion to celebrate creativity, diversity and pure imagination with a touch of uncensored, jury-free excitement.

Robert Thurmer, director of The Galleries at CSU since 1990, said that submissions have been very consistent over the 24 years that he’s been at the galleries.

“We have had approximately 300 to 350 artists participating and 500 to 600 works of art,” Thurmer said.
With all the submissions, making room for it all might pose an issue — or so you’d think. Thurmer said this has never been a problem.

“We have never yet run out of space, even though there are no size limitations,” Thurmer said. “We accommodate everything that comes in the door.”

He said the gallery is very creative in displaying the submissions and they have not yet turned anything away.

According to Thurmer, the largest work that has ever come in the door was a 78-foot long, 4-foot wide drawing, which was displayed on the floor at one point.

The People’s Art show is all about making a space and place where students can market themselves as well as have the opportunity to be free and expressive through their work.

As a warning, Thurmer talks about the ability for students to utilize the space for their creative expressionism, although the work may be a little on the offensive side.

“As far as the visually, most salient works, since we do not censor anything, there are certain sexually explicit images that are submitted,” Thurmer said. “Then there are some religiously oriented works which are offensive to some, but the artists themselves take responsibility for their own work.”

Thurmer said the gallery is an open forum, and the university provides that forum.
“It’s a free speech thing,” Thurmer said. “People can basically say what they want. Some if it is offensive — we tolerate that in the free society, but we don’t endorse it. We ask people to use their own judgment and to not submit anything that is intentionally offensive.”

Thurmer clarified that the gallery is open minded — everything is accepted and there is no discrimination.
“Art is defined by the artist,” Thurmer said. “If you say it’s art, we’re not going to argue with you.”

All entries will be exhibited — in any medium, of any size — in the gallery during the exhibition.
The Art Gallery will gladly accept a suggested donation of $5 per entry and a 25 percent donation for works sold during the exhibition.

The gallery is housed at 1307 Euclid Ave. — in the Cowell and Hubbard building — in the central location for the Arts Campus at Playhouse Square.