Rock Island-based Quad City Arts has two special events coming up the next couple of days.

On Thursday, July 7, at 6 p.m., the Metro Arts program will have its Final Showcase outside at Arts Alley, next to the gallery at 1715 2nd Ave., Rock Island.

The 40-plus student apprentices will talk about their projects and what they learned through their five-week process (which met weekday mornings). This year, apprentices worked on film, graphic design, mural painting, and poetry.

Metro Arts apprentices in front of their mural with lead artist Heidi Sallows (standing, second from left).

Metro Arts brings together creative young adults and provides them with productive, paid apprenticeships in the arts. The program is open to any student age 15-21 residing in the Quad Cities region. Participants will work on group projects under the supervision of a professional artist. Participants learn techniques and applications of their particular genre while developing professional skills.

Find out more about this program on its website HERE.

Opening reception on Friday

On Friday, July 8, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Quad City Arts will host an artists’ reception in the gallery for the current exhibit. At the opening reception, artists will be present, and refreshments will be served.

Through Aug. 12, 2022, the gallery presents jewelry-like sculptures by Ali Hval and multi-media installations by Melissa Airy.

Ali Hval, of Iowa City, is a muralist and sculptor who balances the sensuality of forms and the innocence and playfulness of the materials used. Hval’s jewelry-like sculptures reflect her interest in adornment of the body. The forms resemble anything from bodies to brooches and earrings to nipple tassels, according to an exhibit release.

Disco Drops created by Ali Hval.

“I explore the ties between domesticity, femininity, fashion, and consumerism and how these affect our day-to-day encounters,” Hval said. “They embrace, highlight, and empower women’s sensuality and femininity rather than hiding or denying it, as well as acknowledging the awkwardness, humor, and performance that can come with it.” 

Melissa Airy, of Stevens Point, Wis., is an interdisciplinary artist that primarily combines installation, performance, and video art to create a visual exploration of her identity as a pilgrim.

Through her artistic research and practice, Airy strives to understand and translate religious experiences to a secular world. Her work is a visual representation of her personal experiences as a sojourner to sacred landscapes in an attempt to understand the profound sense of purpose and awakening that was encountered along the way.

A piece by artist Melissa Airy, “Here, There, Where.”

Airy uses performance art, video, and installation as avenues to understand, express and share the experiences she had while journeying. She aims to create spaces and experiences that form a meeting ground for diverse viewers momentarily uniting those who choose to journey through the work.

In addition to the Rock Island gallery, the current artists’ works can be seen and purchased online HERE.