WHYY's ArtWorks draws on performing and visual arts stories from its sister PBS stations to bring viewers a geographically diverse arts experience.



Featured Artists: Chuck Weber, Cross Currents, Sherlock Holmes and early American furniture

In this edition of Artworks, young artists push back again stereotypes, Sherlock Holmes is on display in Columbus, Ohio, a serious diagnosis fuels an artistic surge, and master craftsman of the past are honored in an elaborate exhibit.

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Episode Highlights:

Cross Currents

Metropolitan State University of Denver, Center for Visual Art presents Cross Currents, an exhibition that interrogates the constructs of cultural identity, the power of representation and the ways in which meaning shifts depending on the origin of an image.

The artists of Cross Currents represent the spirit of innovation by blending elements found in traditional Native American art with meaning and strategies born of 21st century art making, adding unique voices to the visual language of today. From this platform they present new possibilities for understanding the complexities of cultural identity from the varied perspective of individuals with different indigenous backgrounds. Acts of misrepresentation and appropriation of traditional symbols propagated by mass media are confronted head-on, while declarations of individuality, rejecting labels and stereotypes, offer new models of self-ascribed cultural identification.

The wide range of expression and media found in the exhibition demonstrates the futility of attempting to confine artists of native descent to one category. A common thread, however, is found in the exploration of identity, traversing between indigenous heritages and life in the twenty-first century. These artists neither exist nor create art in the vacuum of a singular society, but flow through the many influences of contemporary life and art, while challenging preconceptions of a singular Native American culture frozen in the past.

Cross Currents is the second of two CVA exhibitions, curated by CVA creative director Cecily Cullen, that feature the work of innovative artists engaging in a cross-cultural dialogue regarding Native American legacies in the context of contemporary art.

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International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes

The streets of London – dark, shadowy, mysterious – set the stage for The International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes at COSI. At the exhibit, visitors are invited to follow in the footsteps of Sherlock Holmes, the literary creation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Guests join the master detective on his pursuit to crack the most intricate mysteries and dreadful crimes using the powers of deduction and the most cutting–edge 19th century techniques of forensic science. The International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes was developed by Exhibits Development Group and Geoffrey M. Curley + Associates in collaboration with the Conan Doyle Estate Limited, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, and the Museum of London. COSI is Columbus, Ohio’s dynamic Center of Science and Industry.

Slideshow below: Inside the Sherlock exhibit. Photos by COSI Columbus


Chuck Weber

Meet Chuck Weber, a distinguished portrait painter with an impressive portfolio. Up until 14 years ago, Weber was spending his days in an office, running a Wisconsin ad agency. Learn what drove him back to art.

“Portraits are a passion for me. Pure, unadulterated joy. A joy I am hopeful shows in my work. I relish painting people in action, particularly children, who bring such vitality to everything they do, and accomplishing this in a contemporary impressionist style.”

Chuck Weber


Four Centuries of Massachusetts Furniture

Four Centuries of Massachusetts Furniture unites eleven institutions in an unprecedented partnership to celebrate furniture-making in the Bay State. Massachusetts brings to mind such diverse images as the Pilgrims or the Red Sox, John Adams or John Kennedy, the Big Dig or the Berkshires—but not furniture. Yet over the past 400 years no state has had a greater impact on this craft. The products of the state’s workmen number in the tens of millions and include some of the finest furniture made in America, from lavishly carved oak chests of the 17th century to the inventive studio designs of today.