On The Town

Art opening and a proposal

An art opening in Patterson Park inspires an important question.

By Jess Mayhugh | September 18, 2009, 12:30 pm

On The Town

Art opening and a proposal

An art opening in Patterson Park inspires an important question.

By Jess Mayhugh | September 18, 2009, 12:30 pm

Get Baltimore Daily.

Sign up today and you'll get our latest stories delivered straight to your inbox every weekday afternoon.

Last night I attended an art opening at Patterson Park restaurant/bar, Three. While not a gallery space, Three is among many local businesses that support artists living in its community. The artist being celebrated last night was M. Jordan Tierney, who was debuting her exhibition "Falling in Love in Patterson Park."

Tierney's pieces (like "Phoenix," pictured) play with texture and light to ultimately give the viewer a very tangible feeling of optimism. "This show is so great because it’s about happiness," Tierney says. "And I think there’s something weird in the art world where it’s taboo to do something positive. I was finally able to express that without judgement, mainly because I am so happy."

It's no wonder that Tierney's 22 pieces, and overall theme, express such a joyous emotion. Last Friday, she brought her girlfriend, Molly, by the the exhibit just to show her some of the pieces she had hung. Molly got to one piece that incorporated text, "Do you want to sit on this park bench with me forever?" Then, Tierney handed Molly the label for the piece, which was called "Proposal." Molly instantly started crying and, of course, said yes.

This kind of story, though a little bit exceptional, is an example of what can happen when businesses support local artists in the community. Neighborhoods like Patterson Park, and others like Station North, have a plethora of local exhibits hosted by neighborhood spots (like Three, Romans, High Grounds, Patterson Perk, and Yellow Dog Tavern, to name a few).

Tierney, a trained artist and MICA alum, says that these sorts of shows are unique in the art world. "I lived in Washington D.C. for 20 years and most of those coffee shops and businesses have gotten gentrified," she says. "There is no local presence, so this idea is definitely particular to Baltimore."

This phenomenon could be attributed to the area being so walkable, Tierney suggests. "I think this neighborhood art phenomenon is also due to this being a pedestrian, as opposed to car-based, lifestyle," she says. "We support each other in a radius of what can be reached on foot, and we build relationships with those around us instead of going to chain stores by car and seeing strangers."

Along those same lines, Tierney's studio is going to be one of the spaces featured in School 33's Open Studio Tour on October 18, where the general public can tour more than 70 artist studios around the city. As Tierney put its, "Baltimore is so cool because everyone is encouraged to do their own weird thing."




Meet The Author
Jess Mayhugh is the digital editor for Baltimore, where she covers nightlife, sports, food, and events.

You May Also Like


Arts & Culture

The Book Thing Bounces Back

A Baltimore literary institution gets reborn, thanks to the community.

Arts & Culture

This Is What Activism Looks Like

We take a look at some of the key figures who are shaping both arts and activism in the city.

MaxSpace

Review: Only the Brave

Old-fashioned male weepy has some new tricks up its sleeve.


Arts & Culture

Watch This Tape

A Remington shop brings video back from the dead.

Arts & Culture

Cameo: Bob Benson

We talk to the mirror artist from the American Visionary Art Museum.

Arts & Culture

Music Reviews: October 2017

The latest from Outcalls and Us and Us Only.

Connect With Us

Most Read


110 Years of Covering Baltimore
We celebrate a milestone and reflect on longevity.

Flickering Treasures
Photographer Amy Davis describes her new book that explores Baltimore’s forgotten movie theaters.

This Is What Activism Looks Like
We take a look at some of the key figures who are shaping both arts and activism in the city.

The Launch: October 2017
Our nine musts from this month's calendar of events.

Sex and the City
Rec Pier Chop House adds glam factor to Fells Point.