Updated Wednesday, January 28
Don’t be alarmed by the startling red and black fliers with a satanic-looking bald man that sprouted up around the Island this past week, just get excited.
The posters are promoting “Sinners and Saints,” the next event in the series of “Whatever the Outcome” (WTO) projects, a community art initiative developed by Craig Miner, a computer technician by day and conceptual artist the rest of the time. The event kicks off at 8 pm at The Ritz on Wednesday February 4 “till late.”
Mr. Miner has hosted similar events around the Island since 2013 at places that include the Field Gallery, Polly Hill, State Road Restaurant, and Noëpe Center. His intent is to help promote local artists on the Island and forge community among them, while creating interactive experiences for the public. “Artists aren’t going to be intimidated by each other; you go to someone else’s show and get so inspired. The goal is to keep having fun exposing people to new art and find new ways to create upon,” said Mr. Miner. “There’s a huge groundswell of support from people (on the Island) who appreciate art and are the sweetest, nicest people.”
Mr. Miner recruited local electrician and artist Dave Miller, whose art he describes as coming from “a little darker of a place,” to create a large-scale acrylic painting, 4 feet by 10 feet, with the theme of Heaven vs. Hell. “I really just wanted to spend time with Dave and get his help in participating in every aspect of this project.”
Mr. Miller was motivated by artist Danielle Mulcahy’s past WTO event at Polly Hill, and knew he had to deliver: “People know I like to draw; they haven’t got a clue.” After Mr. Miller spent months painstakingly perfecting the piece on a giant magnet, Mr. Miner took it and cut it into 30 chunks, all for the sake of a good time and a good cause.
The pieces have been distributed to various friends and influencers, and are being sold for $30 (which includes admission to the event) for those who would like to “host the art” in the time leading up to the show, and who agree to return the art and participate in putting it back together. Come Tuesday night, the 30 pieces are slated to arrive individually at the Ritz, and the audience will be expected to reconstruct the painting, competing with the force of the heavy magnet and potentially a few cocktails.
Asked what happens if pieces are missing come event night, Mr. Miner was not concerned. “Whatever the outcome,” he said. “At State Road the last piece didn’t appear until later in the night. It brings a lot of enthusiasm into the projects. The people that jump in have to be willing to take risks.” Mr. Miner doesn’t stress about the events. “We have come to harvest joy. Plus, there are no rules to a giant magnetic mural. I just want the best idea, I don’t have an ego about it.”
Expect the show to include good rock, curated by Mr. Miner and a live DJ set by DJ-KOS, impressive “Sinners and Saints”-themed costumes (the best will be rewarded with a framed show poster designed by Angela Park-Sayles, avid volunteer and supporter of WTO) and a whole lot of collaboration.
“We wanted to have it at The Ritz. After living here for a while, I’ve realized it’s the most rock-and-roll place on the Island. I’m psyched with Jackie and Larkin’s support at The Ritz, and what they are doing to give MV a heartbeat in the dark days. WTO couldn’t be more grateful to them. We wanted to do it on a night that’s not typically busy there, and prove it can get packed — I have friends who would otherwise never go out on a Tuesday getting sitters for this,” said Mr. Miner.
After the show, the art will be removed from the walls and packaged up to be used again, potentially at future WTO events, and eventually sold for the cause. “We don’t leave a footprint, and when it’s over I’ll be so jazzed for the next piece,” Mr. Miner said.
The next event will likely be a summer festival, and will feature Island artist Dan VanLandingham. In the fall, Mr. Miner is planning a five-week road trip, which he is hoping to fund via Kickstarter.com. He will be embarking on the trip with his friend, distributing free WTO art in the form of clothespins, magnets, and T-shirts, and raising awareness for the project, while hoping to entice local artists to help him put on similar events around the country.
“At every single show, what I thought gets shifted, always in a better direction. People come up and write checks for it. It’s their hard-earned money; I’m not going to let them down.”
“Sinners and Saints” at The Ritz Tuesday, Feb. 4, 8 pm “till late.” Tickets can be purchased online at whatevertheoutcome.com: $15 for general admission, $30 admission to host a piece of art. $20 tickets at the door. Come dressed in a “Sinner or Saint”-themed costume.