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Press Room

2/8/01

"Game Fish" Artist Larry Fuente to Speak at the Renwick Gallery

Contact: Smithsonian American Art Museum's Public Affairs Office AmericanArtinfo[at]si.edu
American Art's Web site: AmericanArt.si.edu
Recorded information: (202) 633-8998


California artist Larry Fuente, whose mixed media piece "Game Fish" (1988) has become an icon of the permanent collection at the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, visits the museum on Saturday, Feb. 24 at 2 p.m. to discuss his work. Before the lecture, the museum will hold a collage workshop from noon to 2 p.m.

"With 'Game Fish,' I have endeavored to play with my audience, bombarding their senses and tickling their sensibilities, to create a feeling of frivolous fun and excitement, while extracting an aesthetic integrity from the chaos of our cultural images and artifacts," said Fuente.

In this popular piece, Fuente covered a mounted sailfish trophy with a number of game-related objects in a variety of colors. Dice, poker chips, figurines, ping-pong balls, yo-yos, domino and Scrabble tiles, and badminton birdies, among numerous other game pieces and toys create a three-dimensional, collage like work.

Fuente's visit to Washington, D.C., is supported by a National Endowment for the Arts grant, titled "Creative Links: Positive Alternatives for Youth." The grant provides the opportunity for Fuente to hold the position of artist in residence at WVSA arts connection (formerly Washington Very Special Arts), as well as lecture at the Renwick. At WVSA arts connection Fuente will be creating a project along with children with special needs as part of the organization's Arts Around the Block Festival 2001, a hands-on arts program for D.C. public school children, from May 7 to 11. For more information call Mary Connole at (202) 261-0232.

"Mr. Fuente is a multi talented artist and 'Game Fish' is one of our most popular pieces," said Kenneth Trapp, curator-in-charge at the Renwick. "We are so pleased that thanks to WVSA arts connection and NEA, we can offer this much anticipated program."

Fuente, who is well-known for transforming ordinary commercial products into works of art, will return to the Renwick for a lecture on Sunday, May 6, also as part of the NEA's grant to the Renwick and WVSA arts connection.

WVSA arts connection is a nonprofit organization that has been helping Washington, D.C., area children and young people achieve success for more than 20 years. Employing the arts as an alternative method of education, WVSA arts connection provides a series of integrated and innovative arts programs and services.

The Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum is dedicated to exhibiting American crafts from the 19th to the 21st century. The Renwick is located on Pennsylvania Avenue at 17th Street, N.W., near the Farragut North (Red line) and Farragut West (Blue and Orange lines) Metrorail stations. Museum hours are from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily. Admission is free. Public information: (202) 357-2700; (202) 786-2393 (TTY); (202) 633-9126 (Spanish). Recorded information: (202) 633-8998. Please visit the museum's award-winning Web site at AmericanArt.si.edu.

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