Monday, July 6, 2009

Art Looping on Independence Weekend

By Guest Blogger, Jessica Graae

Pulling into Toscana’s parking lot at 5:42, I was lucky to get the last seat on the Art Loop bus. Most of us aboard were new to Wilmington's Art of the Town experience and were happily chatting as our guide/driver, Shawn, wove his way from Trolley Square to downtown Wilmington. He made sure we had plenty of time for exhibit-viewing and that we got to each destination on the Loop. Great job, Shawn!

At Gallery 919 Market, Peter Kaplan’s photography demanded attention with its bold, daring hues. A renegade, Kaplan related how his persistence has paid off, as he gained special access to the Statue of Liberty, becoming the preferred photographer of Statue of Liberty/Ellis Island Foundation. Though many of his photographs are shot from dizzying heights, he is fascinated by detail: April, 1938 is a close-up of The Statue of Liberty’s toe with the date carved in it. Other notable pieces include aerials of the Golden Gate Bridge, for which he was named the official 50th anniversary celebration photographer.

For information on his upcoming book America From Above, see

Our bus reached the Delaware Art Museum just in time for us to hear Ne Ne Ali, the eleven-year-old headliner of YouthSpeaks! A brilliant and insightful young poet, Ali stunned the audience with her wisdom, words and grace. Her social commentary included an observation that MTV and BET were “trying to raise her.” Through her dynamic verse, she reminded us that the spoken word is virtuous, can lead to reading and free thinking, and can guide away from negative stereotypes.

For information on Ali and to hear her poetry, see Be sure to visit!

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