Doodle-friendly event 

New exhibit pairs local artists with turntable talent

By Nicole Fitzgerald

What: Audio/Visual art exhibition

When: Monday, Nov. 27, 9 p.m.

Where: Maxx Fish

Admission: $5

As cover art director for Pique Newsmagazine, Jon Parris receives a steady stream of artists looking for a means to showcase their work.

Not all art mediums or styles are conducive to a cover page spotlighting a feature story with only 52 coveted spots allocated per year. Parris saw a need for an alternative way to provide exposure to Whistler’s creative talent.

He decided to animate a new creative force with the Audio/Visual art exhibition night, combining fine art with turntable artistry twice a month at a makeshift gallery.

Cartoonist Leah Tiscione will be the first to showcase her artwork at the bi-monthly celebration on Monday, Nov. 27 at 9 p.m. at Maxx Fish.

“There are a lot of artists around town and I can’t put everyone on the cover,” said Parris who spins every Monday night at Maxx Fish. “It came to mind that I could do this with a night out. It’s something different to do for a night out. You can’t go out in this town without doing the party dance circuit, so I wanted to set up a more lounge setting with a mingling focus… Just to get creative types together every second week to meet with friends and inspire each other.”

Placing art in a laidback soundscape was the perfect match for the graphic designer and resident DJ.

Parris’s love of deep West Coast house, old school Chicago and New York tunes will be on deck with downtempo lounging house music. However, unlike most club nights, the focus is off the tables and onto the walls with Tiscione’s cartoon illustrations.

“Cartoons aren’t normally the typical kind of art shown at an art show,” Parris said. “It's the kind of thing that interests those people who love art but wouldn’t be caught perusing Gallery Row in the Hilton. Also I'd like the focus of these shows to really represent a single artist’s style as a theme. Comic art is a great example of this. Leah is also fairly new in town, so I wanted to highlight someone fresh to the Whistler arts scene.”

The New York native’s cartoons have jumped from comic books to newspapers to merchandise design and commercials.

After graduating from the University of Arizona with a BFA in Illustration/Design, Tiscione interned at Marvel Comics. She has also produced a daily comic strip for the university.

Her freelance work runs the gamut. She designed works for companies such as Raytheon, Mark Irvin Commercial Real Estate, Ike’s Coffee and Tea, Beaudry RV and Bobby & Brad 94.9 Mix FM, just to name a few. Her most recent work includes The Alphabet of Manliness by George “Maddox” Ouzounian. Tiscione was one of eight illustrators working on the comic. She is currently working on the next release, The Best Comic Book in the Universe.

Parris invites art enthusiasts to get involved by picking up their own pencil at the event. Two contests will be hosted throughout the evening: the most creative use of onomatopoeia and if you were a comic book character, what kind would you be? Scrapbooks will be available for anyone to pencil in words or images. Tiscione prints will be awarded to the competition’s victors.

“It’s a doodle-friendly event,” Parris said.

Doors open at 9 p.m. Cover is $5.

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