The impact of The Talking Cure has been extraordinary in each city that accepted the challenge to realize both its potential and relevance. The project is based on personal revelations and convictions, with audience members providing their own stories, inspired by the human personalities imbued in each artwork. It was designed to foster community engagement and involvement. The interactive nature of the work has resulted in vast open-ended participation: veteran’s groups, the Guthrie Theater and fashion designers in Minneapolis; Spoleto Festival USA attendees, South Carolina Public Radio listeners and charter school students in Charleston; psychotherapists in Hartford; poets and writers in Akron; young actors in New York and elementary school children in Seattle; among many other community groups.
Just as Freud’s original concept of free association- what he called “The Talking Cure” -was meant to allow the subject’s unconscious mind to follow its own path. Stern’s evocative multimedia humanoid creations entice audiences to enhance consciousness and solicit creative reactions.
Now it is our turn to engage with this participatory exhibition and make sure it has a lasting positive impact. We seek your participation -- your creative ideas and skills on how best to activate and innovate – providing assurance that this opportunity is transformative for both the sensibilities of individuals and the identities of social structures.
We want to thank Melissa Stern and Richard Fisher, Director, The Institute for Venture Philanthropy and their vision and generosity in sharing this unique exhibition with our organization. We have been impressed at every stage with their commitment, their goodwill and their energy. Their guidance has been invaluable. We have been encouraged to have the exhibition dynamically support our impressive multidimensionality expressive community.
About the Kranzberg Arts Foundation
It is no accident that the producers of The Talking Cure reached out to the Kranzberg Arts Foundation and the GALLERY at KAC for the next presentation of this exhibit. In reviewing our gallery mission, they understood that we have a shared commitment to the impact of art for everyone in a community.
The Gallery at KAC looks with fresh eyes at how we define and value art in our community and how visual art can most directly impact and engage the widest possible audience. “Fresh eyes” also allow new examinations of what art is can be regarding materials, concepts and social relevance. The focused consideration of this gallery on new and varied points of views invites new opportunities in St. Louis for conceptual art and mixed media explorations. The Gallery at KAC will serve the St. Louis community and regional area by offering visually relevant art to an increasingly broader and more diverse audience. We are committed to listening to the multi-layered voices that compose the cultural and historical identity of St. Louis and its extended region of influence.
We cannot overstate the richness and vibrancy of this community as a platform for The Talking Cure in St. Louis. The Gallery at Kranzberg Arts Center is located at 501 N. Grand at Olive which is at the heart of St. Louis’s thriving visual and performing arts community. We are bordered to the south by the landmark universities of Harris Stowe and St. Louis Universities each of which have defining social and historical significance in our community. For decades, Big brothers and Big Sisters has been a mainstay in the community and even now is active in furthering the development of greater opportunities in the area. Likewise, Craft Alliance, which has served the art community for decades as well, has had a second location here for several years and occupies a beautiful suite of studios in the lower level of the building. For several years, they have been offering studio classes and hosting resident artists. Programming for both KETC and NPR, via UMSL’S satellite campus, are broadcast from just a half a block away.
The Fox Theater is immediately north of Kranzberg Arts Center as well as Powell Symphony Hall. Turning west at Washington Blvd. you will immediately approach the Sheldon Concert Hall which has a long tradition of intimate theatrical and musical performance but also hosts a variety of art exhibitions throughout the year. Just beyond the Sheldon are the Pulitzer and Contemporary Art Museum, 2 of St. Louis’s major art museums. The Kranzberg Art Foundation is also supporting theater, dance and other performing arts at the Marcelle, .Zack, and the Grandel Theater which is the new home of the Darkroom and our photography exhibits.
We are witnessing a significant series of unfolding events that have already impacted St. Louis in yielding a heightened cultural awareness of identity and self-expression. The historical alignment of resources and the anticipated growth and the commitment to the arts is now unprecedented in St. Louis. The convergence of new energy and ideas with the existing artistic community promises the beginning of a St. Louisan artistic Renaissance. This area is a culturally dense hothouse already breeding unique collaborations and it is rich with the promise of future artistic possibilities and cross-pollinations.