Akron, OH – The Akron Art Museum in partnership with Current is pleased to announce a commissioned collective project by Liz Maugans called Mouse House Party, an exhibition of over 150+ (and growing) contemporary Northeast Ohio artists on view August 5-September 30. Conceived during the height of the pandemic, the project offers local artists an opportunity to share their work. Seema Rao, deputy director & chief experience officer, said, “For this project, we reached out to Liz Maugans, who is a convener of people. She expressed a desire to create a platform for radical healing after the pandemic. We loved the collective aspect of her project, and we were thrilled to be able to partner with Current.”
Maugans created an open call for artists, asking each to respond to the prompt “Fill the Hole.” Her framework is both intellectual and physical. She invited each to fill a mousehole-shaped frame, but also to draw on how their art helped to fill the emotional holes felt during the pandemic. As Maugans noted, “during this evolving pandemic we have all experienced great loss and disconnection. We’ve grown used to socially distancing in our homes for togetherness, and to ease our disconnection and isolation. But as people are becoming vaccinated and emerging from these spaces, how did you fill this hole?”
The installation will be a manifestation of the complex creativity of the region. Britney Kuehm, Co-Founder of Current, highlights the complexity of the installation, “The varied perspectives and range of media will present a truly inclusive and expansive exhibition, engaging audiences with the wide spectrum of ideas present in this region with the aim to connect and celebrate our collective energies.”
Maugans was particularly well suited to spearhead this collective venture. Her past work lies at the intersection of contemplative practice and civic engagement, particularly in how artists can engage and connect collectively. Maugans continues to explore communion in public life with communities and organizations with a more-the-merrier-mantra.
The Mouse House Party installation will be at Current at 78th Street Studios in their stand-alone creative space on W 78th. Mouseholes will line the walls from floor to ceiling. The artist, Dana Depew is fabricating the wooden baseboard frames from reused wood stock baseboards. Artists in the show span three generations and live throughout Northeast Ohio. Ongoing work can be submitted and added to vacant holes throughout the exhibition’s run.