February 28, 2010

Can you help a struggling artist?

Former Tattoo great Joe Bun Keo, who grew up in Bristol and graduated last year from the University of Hartford after studying art, is having his first solo show soon at the Bristol Historical Society. He's a great young man with a real passion, and talent, for art.
Jackie and I have had the joy of watching Joe grow up, through high school and college. We know his wonderful family. We love the guy, really, so I can't claim to be dispassionate in rooting for his success. [Here are his Tattoo cartoons, by the way, which hold up pretty well over the years.]
But I can't fund his show or buy his supplies because, well, reporters get paychecks that amount to diddly squat.
These sorts of shows cost a lot of money, of course, so Joe's looking for financial help. If you're in a position to help, please do. And if you can't anything more than show up and see Joe's work, that's great, too. His show is slated to open March 19, though I'll keep you updated.
Here's a letter that Joe is sending out now looking for help:

To Whom It May Concern:
 My name is Joe Bun Keo. I’m an artist hailing from Bristol, CT. I have a solo show coming up in the next few weeks (MARCH 19TH) and I’m looking for some assistance.
 Being an artist, making art, and showing art is mostly a self-funded endeavor, but sometimes one needs to go out and solicit outside resources.
 Currently, the economy isn’t seeing the best of days, but nonetheless the arts seem to still be thriving.
 My show is being showcased at the Bristol Historical Society and Museum in Bristol,CT. The Young Artist Series at the Bristol Historical Society (YAS@BHS) has special opportunities for interested candidates for Sponsorship of the show.
 There are 2 levels of Sponsors:
 Primary Sponsor: $500 or more
 Co-Sponsors: $250
 Though any amount or donation is welcomed and highly appreciated to further assist the costs of the event (materials, refreshments, maintenance, etc.). 
 If you’re interested please contact the following:
 dadanotprada@gmail.com/ 860-940-8588 -Joe Bun Keo, Exhibiting Artist
lindsayvigue@gmail.com/ 860-919-8009- Lindsay Vigue, Chairwoman of YAS@BHS
 Checks can be made out to:
 The Bristol Historical Society and Museum
 If you know of other organizations or persons that would be interesting in helping out please forward them this email.
 Thank You,
 Joe Bun Keo
 Bristol native, JOE BUN KEO, a graduate of the Hartford Art School at the University of Hartford, will be kicking off the 2010 season of YAS@BHS with his first solo exhibition: "Youth Vernacular".
Joe was a Sculpture major with a minor in Art History. He works mostly in installation art, interactive situations, and altered/non-altered found objects.
"Youth Vernacular" will launch the next chapter of YAS@BHS by ushering in some contemporary flare into a beautiful and historical Victorian house located in the hills of Downtown Bristol.
Keo works with everyday objects, breaks down the structure of language as we know it, and at the same time finds a way to throw in some clich├ęs, puns, punchlines,one-liners and clever humor for good measure. 
Joe believes that even the mundane and mass produced consumer products of our daily lives carry a story, deeper meanings and alternative utility. All it takes is a new light and a second chance.
Musical Performance by String Theorie
The YOUNG ARTIST SERIES debuted at the Bristol Historical Society & Museum (YAS@BHS) in 2009 under the direction of Bristol's own, Lindsay Vigue (an established photographer in her own right). 
The program/series looks to highlight the artistic energy and creative community of young and emerging Bristol artists. 
YAS@BHS aims to showcase homegrown talent to its resident and those beyond Bristol's town line.
Past Installments of the YAS@BHS included the following artists:
Kenneth Lundquist, Jr. http://www.kljinc.com
Jennifer Lepke
Ryan Casey http://www.favoritemedia.net
Lindsay Vigue http://www.lindsayviguephotography.com
The mission of the Bristol Historical Society is to promote an interest in local history and encourage an appreciation for its importance. The Bristol Historical Society collects, preserves, and interprets significant historical resources to enhance the present community and provide a historical context for future growth.
Sustained by the work of staff and volunteers and supported by the generosity of the community, the Bristol Historical Society strives to:
1. Develop and operate a vigorous center for a variety of community educational activities.
2. Collect, preserve, and interpret a collection of local historic artifacts and records.
3. Promote community events of historical significance with public appeal.
4. Encourage the preservation and restoration of the community’s historical assets.
Copyright 2010. All rights reserved.
Contact Steve Collins at scollins@bristolpress.com

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