WORDS BY DISPATCH STAFF
Solar Arts goes all out for Art-a-Whirl, packing three floors full of art and three floors of live music. That’s exponential! If you need some pointers in that tidal wave of visual and aural spectacle, consider stopping in to see micro-mosaic goldsmith and jeweler Burkhart Design Studio (@burkhartdesignstudio) on the second floor. Up a flight are Ken Rivera (@solylunagallery) paintings and Gabriel Arrazola (@alebrijes_arrazola) with some incredible sculptures. Psst: If you’re still SeekingSeekins (@iconinblackandwhite) then you’ll find him on the second floor.
Northrup King Building
Sean G. Phillips (@seangarrisonartist) is a performance painter with vibrant, impactful work on the second floor, who describes his mind as a “room full of overcaffeinated kindergarten children daring to dream”—you want to take a closer look at his work now, don’t you? James Nutt (@nuttdraws, pictured above) in studio 321 is an architect, instructor, and prolific sketch artist. Linnea Maas (@insidetherobot) in studio 351 is an illustrator known for her takes on cool robots. If botanical art is more your jam, don’t miss Ann Wood in studio 450—she’s famous on Instagram as @woodlucker—and she makes the most incredible paper flowers.
Everyone knows one of the draws of Art a Whirl are those street parties, but here’s the secret bomb we’re willing to drop on you: The Arts District-sponsored Speakeasy in the Casket Arts basement has a trés-cool vibe and strong drinks. But there’s also a ton of great art at Casket Arts, including Andrea Canter (@andreacanterartworks), who does layered, textured abstracts, photography, and mixed media is a must-stop in studio 218. Sculptor legend Kyle Fokken (@kfokkenart) in suite 120 exhibits his vibrant steampunk cool with his mixed media sculptures, which take an aesthetic cue from folk art and vintage toys and explore the cultural contexts between people.
Do not miss the one and only Caitlin Karolczak ( @Caitlin_karolczak), a painter and collector of natural oddities in studio 514. With a BFA in Fine Arts and a BA in Art History with an emphasis in 19th century medical photography, Karolczak has made some truly awe-inspiring, gorgeous, haunting art that must be seen in person.
Stuttgart-born, American-raised Greg Volker (@gregvolkerarts) creates way cool midcentury modern-inspired ceramics that reflect the landscape, both from the air and up close (He’s also got a cool band, too.)
And if you need a little bump to keep crawlin’, get caffeinated at the Mojo Coffee Gallery (@mojo_coffee_gallery). The temp is always comfy and cool here, which, if the weather gods permit and the summer sun holds out, will provide a welcome respite, too.