8 to Create highlights artists’ processes


Courtesy of 8 to Create

Visitors watch an artist explain their work at last year’s 8 to Create event. 8 to Create will host their third-annual showing from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday at [co][lab] in downtown Urbana.

By Jess Peterson, Staff Writer

Walking up and down a museum’s hallways or flipping through the pages of a text are common ways to admire works created in the past. But, seeing the first lines of a drawing sketched onto the page and paints blended to get the exact shade of purple needed to reflect the sky are moments that happen long before the finished product is hung in a frame for the public to admire.

8 to Create is filling in the gaps of the creative process with its third-annual live art show from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.this Saturday at the [co][lab] in downtown Urbana. The CU community can attend free of charge to observe eight artists, each working on their own art piece, from start to finish.

The first show planned and hosted by the non-for-profit group was in March 2015. Local artists, ones who travel out of state, and those who are still honing their craft as graduate students have been featured in past shows.

This year’s lineup includes Hong Chun Zhang, Neurotik, Jason Michael Bentley, Kathleen Durkin, Maya Bauer, Nicole Brunel, Shannon Tomanovich, and Ghi Fremaux. All of the artists for Saturday’s show have been highlighted on the event’s Facebook page. The featured artist of the event, Hong Chun Zhang, will also be holding a free lecture at 5:30 p.m. in room 315 of the Art and Design Building.

Eleven University students from varying academic backgrounds have been preparing for the show for the past year. Billy Galant, in charge of public relations and advertising the show, joined the RSO this past year. Galant says his Quad Day experience freshman year left him disappointed with the lack of art related groups on campus. After becoming involved with 8 to Create this year, Galant says he anticipates the years that are to come.

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“After seeing the show last year, it has definitely been an interesting experience to see exactly how much behind the scenes work there is for just one annual show,” Galant said. “I believe that what we have currently organized is probably the best show out of all three … I’m confident (for) the coming years to create a club that’s open and helpful to anyone that wants to join us and see what the experience is like.”

Donations for the annual art show can be given at the GoFundMe page for the event, and also will be accepted on Saturday in person. Everyone at the event who makes a donation on Saturday will be entered in a raffle to win a $25 gift card from one of the sponsors, Amara Yoga in Urbana.

A reception will be held after the event with free refreshments, and the opportunity to talk to the artists while admiring their complete pieces. There will be a large range of mediums used, even one artist who will be sculpting rather than drawing or painting. According to the website, the hope is to break down institutional and social hierarchies by allowing for the mixture of adding variables between artists in the same space.

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Editor’s note: Billy Galant is an Illini Media Company employee.