On Saturday the 9th of March a diverse and international exhibit opened at The Gallery at the Gay and Lesbian Community Center in Salt Lake City. The exhibit was entitled the International Coaster Project, Destination: The World and was coordinated by the Transcultural Exchange in Boston and brought to Salt Lake City by myself local artist and poet, Shawn Dallas Stradley.
In October of 2001, 100 artists from around the world were invited to participate in The Coaster Project. The requirements were as follows: to make 100 coasters, approximately 4″x4,” intended for exhibition and then use; establish a venue and schedule for exhibition sometime between the 9th of March and the 19th of May, 2002, and then arrange for a local establishment to use and distribute the coasters after the exhibit.
Each of the participating artists rose to the challenge and produced truly amazing and unique work. All of the coasters were then sent to Transcultural Exchange, divided into 100 different groups, each containing 100 coasters, one from each artist. A full set was then sent back to each artist in their respective cities for exhibition.
The world wide opening of the exhibit was the 9th of March with the main exhibition taking place at the Fuller Art Museum in Boston. On this same day other exhibitions of the coaster project opened in China, Russia, Canada, Finland and Salt Lake City. The local reception was very well attended, light in attitude, fun and informative. The work ranges from original photographs to poetry, original acrylic paintings to drawings, tire rubber to tortillas and mixed media. The images portray a wide range of topics and interests from comedy to religion, social issues to beauty. With 100 different pieces from around the world there really was lot to look at in close detail as the exhibit was viewed.
In completing the final phase of The Coaster Project locally the coasters have been taken to Red Rock Brewing Company for final use and distribution. They are beautiful, diverse and amusing. If you collect coasters, or are just interested in art as everyday object, or everyday object as art, you may want to stop by before they are all gone. As the project comes to full completion in Boston one complete set will be donated to the Fuller Art Museum Permanent Collection.