Essence Unique Shrine and Showroom

Cleveland SGS
May 11 - July 13, 2012

As part of SPACES' public project The Cleveland Convention and Visitor's Bureau (May 11 ? July 13, 2012) the artist collective Cleveland SGS will participate as artists-in-residence in the SPACES World Artists Program. For their residency, SGS will unleash a "synchronized awareness campaign" on the city, a set of carefully crafted advertisements meant to draw travelers to their installation at SPACES-the long-anticipated tourist destination, Essence Unique Shrine and Showroom.

Cleveland SGS is a homegrown group of street archivists and artists who, since 2006, have investigated the hidden meaning of Cleveland's commercial narrative, one block at a time. From pawnshops to carryout, hair care to daycare, and back alleys to bar stools, SGS has painstakingly chronicled the homemade imagery that makes up so much of Cleveland's landscape. Drawing heavily on the stories, images and visual vernacular they unearth in their travels across the city, SGS produces video, paintings, installations and signage deeply entwined with the city's pulse.

The shrine pulls from the visual language of storefront spiritualists, dream books, tourist brochures, and the symbolic possibilities of parlor games to delve into traditions of spiritual tourism in Cleveland.

Need some guidance divining your chances at success from numbers or dreams? Here's the attraction for you: Visitors are invited to immerse themselves in the sensory chaos of a spiritual destination devoted to the vagaries of chance, faith, and gambling all at once. Draw upon the wisdom of Reverend True, Cleveland's forgotten Master Specialist- to whom SGS dedicates this shrine- who knows the score when it comes to calculating odds from the mystical implications of games and luck.

Come, take succor, and make an offering to the forces of chance. It may help and it may not, but SGS promises, you'll never know until you try your luck.

Video and Streaming Media

Project Video Catalog


National Endowment for the Arts Ohio Arts Council

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This project is a part of the SWAP Program.

The SPACES World Artists Program (SWAP) offers residencies to international, national and local artists who explore and experiment. SWAP supports artists in the creation, presentation and discussion of new work, while facilitating opportunities for them to collaborate with artists and audiences in Northeast Ohio.

Regional Artists, Apply for this Program.

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