Whether you like food, art, or music, a weekend in Grand Rapids offers a multitude of events to attend. With the warmer weather still here, more people are out and about looking for night life. This past Saturday was no exception.
I took an Uber downtown and got out near Division ave and Cherry St. Before i reached my first destination I met local artist and musician Ahmad Mustafa Mali, who was outside one of the galleries soulfully plucking his guitar. Mali had some of his artwork for sale on display in the shop window. We had a brief conversation about the events going on that night and I continued on.
I reached the Craft House, which was hosting the 'Shop Hop' - a year end review of the different artists that have been featured at the Craft House for 2015. These included; Amanda Carmer, Charled Dinderbeck, Taylor Cole Greenfield, Ryan Hay, Kate Lewis, and Matt Loeks. The artists had different pieces for sale ranging from hand crafted ceramics to drawings and paintings.
At Neighbor Gallery, next door to the Craft House, Artist Tyler Priest was hosting a solo exhibition called Introspection; drawing my way through obstacles. --
Comprised of charcoal drawings on paper. As the title of the exhibit implies, Priest's work is personal and introspective; focusing on Priest's relationship with Autism Spectrum Disorder. The artwork was interpretations of Priest's experiences with past relationships, mental health, family life, and improving cognitive patterns. Looking at the artwork done by Priest was as if i had been brought into his world.
Leaving the Craft House and Neighbor gallery with a belly full of cheese and fine wine, I made my way down Division to The Harris Building; where Mali had tipped me off to an event earlier in the night. I walked upstairs into a warehouse to find a variety of art strung along the walls. There I met California native Tyrell Bronx, who was just beginning his set on a Grand Piano. Bronx performed a beautiful rendition of indie-rock band Arcade Fire's
"Song on the Beach; Photograph" which was also used in the Spike Jonz film Her. This piece tapped into a variety of emotions for myself, and was one that resonated strongly.
While exploring around the Harris Building, I stumbled upon a small dark lit room. The smell of incense was strong and there was calming electronic music playing. The room was filled with a dozen people all dancing in their own way. Andrea Sulak, a chakradance facilitator explained this was a peace dance. As I closed my eyes and joined in the dancing, there certainly was a calming factor to it. The majority of people had their eyes closed in meditation. I felt no feelings or judgement, only peace and serenity.
As the night continued, I had one last stop that I knew I wouldn't want to miss. I went to the West Side to see what was being held at an undisclosed venue, owned by several Grand Rapids artists.
MODUL8, a group of Independent artists aimed at sharing knowledge of underground music and culture, was hosting a night of music, fun, and dancing. An array of tunes were provided by several DJ's which included; Sylock, Neśto B2B H-Bomb, and Superdre. I had h
eard only good things about these artists, but had not yet been able to make it to a show. With a packed house, and
every DJ providing their own personal soundtrack for the night, it's safe to say everyone involved was having a great time. I'm definitely looking forward to seeing future Modul8 events as they create a time you do not want to miss.