top of page
September 8 – November 11, 2012
Steve Wilson Gallery, First Floor
Al Shands and Bill and Lindy Street Galleries, Second Floor

Vyasa addressed him thus, "O guide of the Ganas! Be thou the writer of the ‘Bharata which I have formed in my imagination, and which I am about to repeat.”

Ganesa, upon hearing this address, thus answered, "I will become the writer of thy work, provided my pen does not for a moment cease writing."
- The Mahabharata, Adi Parva, section 1 Translated from Sanskrit by Kisari Mohan Ganguli


Exhibiting Artists: Ellie Ga, Theaster Gates, Denzel GoodPaster, Ralph Eugene Meatyard,

Arturo Alonzo Sandoval, Rebekka Seigel, Mindy Shapero, Cindy Sherman, Edgar Tolson,

Tris Vonna-Michell, and Frank X Walker (Affrilachian Poets)


Storytelling as Craft, Chapter One is an exhibition that includes poetry, photography, performance, quilting, video, and folk art. The show will explore the relationship between craft and contemporary art with works that use the narrative and narrative structures as the primary medium.  As long as human beings have coalesced and communicated, oral traditions were essential in transferring knowledge, history, and ethics from one generation to the next. Works in this show evoke tales of passion, faith, hate, jealousy and a wide range of other human traits as the artists formulate their own opinions of humanity.


The Indian creationist tale, The Mahabharata, illustrates a colorful story being told and an awareness of the telling.  This exhibition explores the process of the telling through sound and object-based works that are activated by spoken and written words in performances by visiting artists or storytellers.  Oral histories are often described as using structures, materials, and traditions (process). The exploration of non-object based art in the exhibition program will illuminate the ways we formulate powerful images that seem tangible from a cognitive standpoint.  Because of developments in scientific research and powerful scans of the brains activities, scientists document how our thoughts exist in the physical world.


Is craft synonymous with a material and process at a time when craft artists are using traditional processes all the while asking existential questions? On the other hand, materiality, process and labor are concepts embedded in the lingua franca of a contemporary artist.


The last component of this exhibition explores DIY trends in the art and craft relationship by giving non-professional storytellers the same stage as professional artists, poets and speakers.  Museum visitors, the Affrilachian Poets, performance artists, musical groups, and storytellers from The Mothradio program will perform on a stage within the exhibition.  During open hours viewers will be encouraged to participate with their own personal stories on the stage, and these stories will be streamed live over the internet.


This exhibition is generously supported by the Kentucky Arts Council, Fund For the Arts, the National Endowment of the Arts, The Windgate Foundation, The Brown-Forman Corporation, WFPL ““The Moth, The Huntington Museum of Art, The University of Louisville Photographic Archives, Louisville Classical Society, Kentucky Historical Society, The University of Kentucky, Marianne Boesky Gallery, Kavi Gupka Gallery, Eleanor Bingham Miller, Paul Marks, Gregory Stewart, and the collection of Michael Hall and Pat Glascock.


Discussions with:

  • Mindy Shapero

  • Ellie Ga Performance / Artist-in-Residence

  • Glenn Adamson

  • Frank X. Walker


Music performances by:

  • Sao Paulo Underground

  • FIELDED with Softcheque and Head-Head

  • Sic Alps



  • Louisville Walking Tour -The Story of our City conducted by historian Rick Bell.

  • Storytellers from The Moth (Radio Hour, WFPL) produced by Tara Anderson.

  • Complete reading of The Iliad organized by the Louisville Classical Academy.




Selected Pieces

bottom of page