Billed as an "exploration and response to the natural world," "Second Nature" opens as part of Arts on the Road, a revamping of Lincoln Road's customary gallery walk. Knight says the new gallery night, now held on the second Thursday of each month, is "really about reminding people that there's still a vital arts scene on Lincoln Road." According to Knight: "Gallery walks began in the early Nineties, a time when there were many more artists' studios here."
In addition to ArtCenter, a handful of commercial galleries have endured the relentless Pottery Barnization of the formerly funky outdoor mall. Knight sees the transformation as an opportunity for the artists who remain: "In season you can easily have 15,000 people walk down Lincoln Road on a single night, with 20,000 to 30,000 people in any given week." Knight believes this increase in traffic demands that arts institutions be "clever at marketing, at presenting people with the arts." ArtCenter eschews outright sales in favor of providing artists with workspace, teaching opportunities, and exposure to a massive public through storefront exhibits and events, such as a curator's discussion that will include the four artists featured in "Second Nature": Wilhelm, Jens Diercks, Robert Flynn, and Jorge Aguereverre.
Further away from ArtCenter but also on Lincoln Road, Howard Austin Feld Digital Photographic Art explores another age-old truth: Sex sells. A highly successful advertising photographer, Feld does a brisk business with his computer-generated soft-core portraits. For Arts on the Road, Feld will treat voyeurs to a photographic shoot, with live! girls! posing for computer enhancement. Seems the cross between commerce and culture can take many forms.