Clark Priftis Art Gallery Grand Opening

Photo by Brooke Hall

Friday night was the canvas on which Clark Priftis Art’s grand opening in Harbor East’s Legg Mason building was splashed with the color of so many supporters and innovators of the Baltimore Renaissance. The place was bursting with flavor from artists Amanda Brisbane, Steven Colucci, Jane Genarro, Abby Modell, Nicole Salzano and Daniel Stuelpnagel and enhanced by the sensual, electronic sounds of local IDM favorites, The Megadrives.

Let’s all take a moment to appreciate what Ann Priftis is doing. By putting her faith in the emerging art scene in Baltimore, she has helped reinforce the importance of the art economy and cultural scene that’s leading an economic and cultural revitalization in Baltimore. It certainly doesn’t hurt that Ann personally invited New York art buyer and art consultant Momo Takanashi.

Photo and story by Brooke Hall.

Photo by Brooke Hall

It’s a known fact that beautiful women are naturally drawn to beautiful art. That’s just one of many reasons to stop by Clark Priftis Art next time you’re in Harbor East. Pictured here in front of Steven Colucci’s (NYC) “Current” is Cheri Landry of Divergence Fine Art, Lisa Egger, and Kelli Riley.

It’s obvious to us that Baltimore is the womb for some of the most vibrant art we’ve ever seen. On the fringe of a national and international scene, we can get away with much, much more; we can live cheaply, yet richly. Like SoHo in the 70s: The artists built the value, but, as the story goes, the convergence of creative forces was fast discovered and thrust into the limelight. The fringe became the center. The art scene in Baltimore needs monetary investment to support its growth, and everyone knows that the city’s overall economy will benefit from the arts. The question is then: Is it possible to grow the art scene and stay on the fringe simultaneously? How do we support the arts and, at the same time, keep it real?

Photo and story by Brooke Hall.

Photo by Brooke Hall

Painter Daniel Stuelpnagel and world-renowned performance artist, simply known as Brenza, demonstrate exactly how to keep it real. We captured this image of them traveling through the ether on yet another inter-dimensional escapade via custom Rubix Flux Capacitor that seems to be nothing more than an amazing painting from our limited perspective. Though they may appear to be frozen between parallel universes, I assure you that these two are quite lucid.

Look past Daniel and Brenza and observe the work of Baltimore’s own Daniel Stuelpnagel: “Urban Legend #40,” acrylic on canvas. Daniel’s car is the epitome of ‘Urban Legend,’ in fact. If you’ve seen a vehicle driving around town that looks similar to this painting then you’ve probably spotted the man himself. The elusive Stuelpnagel strikes again.

Photo and story by Brooke Hall.

Photo by Brooke Hall

Clark Priftis Art is 2,400-square feet of towering windows and pristine white walls on the Harbor East circle in the Legg Mason Building. The opening was very well-attended and we spotted a who’s who or two.

Owner Ann Priftis has been an art dealer and appraiser for over 10 years working in galleries in New York, Washington, DC and Baltimore. In an old interview with Michael Corbin, Priftis was quoted saying “While I deal in a wide variety of work—everything from Barye to Picasso, emerging artists can be the most exciting genre to work with. I think every art dealer and collector dreams of finding the ‘next big thing’—that artist whose work is discovered in a random warehouse somewhere, still selling for $500… truly undiscovered talent is becoming increasingly scarce. If an artist has not been discovered by someone in the industry yet, they simply set up their own website and introduce themselves to the community.”

If you’re creating art, you should be paying attention.

Clark Priftis Art gives a percentage of all sales to Maryland Lawyers for the Arts (MLA) and offers art services including professional appraisals and corporate art consulting.

Photo and story by Brooke Hall.

Photo by Brooke Hall

Jane Gennaro’s (New York City) “Fixing Things is Sometimes Easy” was particularly intriguing because of the incredible array of mixed media. Inside this piece you’ll find an antique handkerchief, coloring book illustrations and animal bones. We’re guessing they’re bird skeletons, but perhaps you should see for yourself. It’s nostalgia on speed; history torn apart and put back together with a melancholy awareness of things lost but not forgotten. It reminds me that death, too, can be elegant.

Photo and story by Brooke Hall.

Photo by Brooke Hall

Not only are the Megadrives the perfect accompaniment for sweaty nightclubs, late night warehouse parties, outdoor summer festivals, or any other typical ballyhoo, as you can see, they also fit in quite nicely in a proper gallery setting. We are not at leisure to reveal exactly what they’re doing at this moment in time, but we can say that the music was, in fact, delectable.

Photo and story by Brooke Hall.

Photo by Brooke Hall

Cellist Kate Zahradnik and lawyer John Sweeney enjoying opening night at Clark Priftis Art.

Photo and story by Brooke Hall.

Photo by Brooke Hall

Friends Michael Ivan Schwartz and Jennifer Yee Burkholder take a pause from solving the world’s problem to smile for the camera. I’m not joking, they really do solve the world’s problems. Jennifer works for World Relief and Michael runs Loud Communications, a freelance video production company specializing in videos for non-profits.

Photo and story by Brooke Hall.

  • Dorinda Gilmore

    It came out looking wonderful from this end Ann (and Jon)… Love ya both MOM…

  • http://www.feedthemodelsgallery.com Jane Gennaro

    Brooke Hall said it all…

    Let’s all take a moment to appreciate what Ann Clark Priftis is doing. By putting her faith in the emerging art scene in Baltimore, she has helped reinforce the importance of the art economy and cultural scene that’s leading an economic and cultural revitalization in Baltimore

  • Vanessa

    Congratulations, Ann! Your hard work and passion for Baltimore made this a fabulous success! I am sorry that “wild horses dragged me away” and I couldn’t be there in person. Put your seatbelt on, the best is yet to come!

    Much Love, Vanessa