Celebrating Local Art: Art Dimensions Baltimore
By Staci Wolfson
In an age of technological innovation and utilitarianism, fine arts can at times fall by the wayside.
Not so in Charm City, where Art Dimensions Baltimore, a charitable organization has formed this summer and dedicated itself to supporting and educating local artists. In addition to providing workshops for artists on artistic techniques and business essentials, the group also plans to engage children in art education and maintain a gallery of local art with regular exhibits and shows.
Art Dimensions held its first exhibit, “That’s Awesome!” in June at Silo Point and has since launched full speed ahead into working on its next endeavors.
CBSBaltimore.com recently sat down with Art Dimensions chief operating officer Yesha Hayes to discuss Art Dimensions’ mission and goals.
CBSBaltimore.com: What is your background and your role with Art Dimensions? How did you get involved with it?
Yesha Hayes: I have always enjoyed art; I have many family members who are heavily involved in art, but I myself had never pursued it with such a passion as the others. Seeing the growing buzz around art, culture and fashion in the Baltimore area inspired me to start getting involved. Then, a good friend of mine, [president] Chris Alder and I started brainstorming one day and he told me about the original chapter of Art Dimensions in St. Louis. I loved the idea.
CBSBaltimore.com: How did the first show go?
YH: Our first show was amazing. With a theme like “That’s Awesome!” it really brought about a lot of chatter. When we would show people some of the art that was showcased, they would say, “That’s awesome!” then giggle because they just realized the spark.
We had over 400 attendees, including some of Baltimore’s top social and art scene people, and some of the artists themselves came, which was really cool for them to talk about their inspirations, backgrounds, etc. to potential buyers or just people browsing. This type of scene helps create that buzz for people. You listen to an artist explain their inspiration and you yourself are inspired. You may not be an artist per se, but it makes you want to support these talented individuals and in turn our city.
Thirteen artists’ works sold at the show that night and I think two or three more sold shortly after. We even had supporters from the Art Dimensions St. Louis chapter come all the way out for our inaugural event. The support by colleagues, peers, artists, the Silo Point venue and other corporate sponsors was a great feeling.
CBSBaltimore.com: What else does Art Dimensions have in the works?
YH: The first workshop we’re going to hold will cover business aspects of exhibiting with galleries – what to expect, how to make your pieces shine in a room of several artists’ works, tax information, etc.
In October, the board members of the Baltimore chapter are traveling to St. Louis to celebrate their 10th anniversary. Ten years!
A few years ago, some royalty members from Dubai randomly stopped by one of their exhibits. Liked it so much, he flew 10 artists and their works to Dubai for an art exhibit there! They were there for a week. I hope this happens in Baltimore.
CBSBaltimore.com: What are the ultimate goals?
YH: Art Dimensions is dedicated to community betterment through the promotion and display of local artwork, as well as involvement with the community through the workshops. We want to inspire inspiration. Not to sound too corny, but it is true – we are all inspired by each other in different ways. We have some really great ideas for future events and we are eager and excited to help the art and culture scene in Baltimore thrive, as well as helping our local talent succeed. The other board members are Chris Alder and [creative director] Scott Mason. We all live in the city from Federal Hill to Canton, so you can see why we would want to make Baltimore better.