Future Ink Graphics creates artist-friendly home in Cleveland’s Clark-Fulton neighborhood

CLEVELAND, Ohio – Clark-Fulton’s Pivot Center hosted Future Ink Graphics (FIG) in late 2021, providing a space for artistic development, focused on screen printing.

Now, with a successful exhibition under its belt, FIG will open its second art exhibition on Friday March 4, focusing on women in print art.

The show’s theme goes back to the FIG’s own history, featuring a team of mostly female artists. Executive Director Stephanie Kluk first dreamed up the idea of ​​FIG in 2020 during the pandemic and later found a home for the organization at the Pivot Center at 2937 W. 25th St.

Kluk drew on her experience in the Cleveland art scene, as director of development for the Collective Arts Network magazine, and through her work as a manager at Zygote Press, West Art League, and Art House Inc.

“I really wanted to have a space that could help artists grow their careers, learn new skills, and have different ways of making a living so they could support themselves,” Kluk said. “We really focus on women at FIG. Artists of color, underrepresented artists – and a lot of work with women. Women in tech, women in the arts, in general.

The next FIG show “Women Who Print” will start at 5 p.m. on March 4 and will be on view until May 14. The show includes pieces by Amber N. Ford, Anne Kibbe, Liz Maugans, Juana Estrada Hernández, Nathalie Bermudez and Suite. The exhibit is free and can be viewed outside the ongoing FIG workshop space and in a spacious hallway inside the Pivot Center.

(Photo courtesy of FIG)

“It’s a community gallery. That means it’s open when the Pivot Center is open,” said FIG Artistic Director Yana Mikho-Misho. “We run our gallery and exhibitions to a very high standard, but they are still accessible to the public. All our exhibitions are very diverse. They include different artists at different career stages, from young designers to very high level designers.

FIG offers more than its gallery. The space will soon house screen printing and engraving equipment, as well as computers for digital design. Located on the first floor of the Pivot Center, the FIG also includes a meeting room, a café and a market space where local artists sell their creations.

FIG joins a team of other Pivot Center tenants, including the Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland Rape Crisis Center, Inlet Dance Company, LatinUS Theater Company and La Mega Cleveland.

The Pivot Center is Cleveland developer Rick Foran’s project to revitalize the 80,000 square foot warehouse on West. 25th Street, located between Seymour and Castle Avenues. It’s just a plot of land away from where Ariel Castro held Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight captive for a decade until the women escaped in 2013.)

The purpose of the building, Foran said in a 2020 article by cleveland.com reporter Eric Heisig, is to help transform the neighborhood’s complicated history into a more positive future.

“The name ‘Pivot’ came from the idea of ​​getting away from the perception of the neighborhood,” Kluk said. “The developer who organized the organizations that are in the building I think has done a really good job and has a good mix of who’s here, and even new organizations moving in.”

FIG is part of this wave of positive energy, and the organization aims to give back to its surrounding neighborhood. His first show was called “New Neighbour”, as a way to introduce the FIG to his community. The show, like the majority of FIG’s work, was presented in English and Spanish, as the neighborhood has a large Hispanic population.

The FIG team distributed flyers in the neighborhood ahead of the opening night of “New Neighbor” on December 10. FIG administrative and research assistant Leah Trznadel said she saw a father and son wandering around the Pivot Center before the show, and Kluk invited them to the opening of the art exhibit.

“They came and the little boy looked like he had a great time, he was so excited,” Trznadel said.

FIG Gallery and Team

The first FIG show, “New Neighbor”. (Photo by Anne Nickoloff, cleveland.com)

Although the FIG works primarily from its Pivot Center space, it has scheduled programs for other locations in Cleveland as well. The FIG has worked with the Cleveland Museum of Art for events associated with its “Women In Print” showcase. Instructor Hannah Manocchio, who runs Snakes + Acey’s mini screen printing shop, teaches art classes through MetroHealth and local high schools.

“Screening is something you can do without college, and I think a lot of schools, a lot of programs don’t do it because they don’t have college options,” said Mannochio. “I’ve been able to give back to the community in a way that I feel like I can, but not many other people can.”

Courses will continue to be offered at FIG in a variety of subjects, such as PhotoShop, screen printing and professional development, Kluk said. Additionally, FIG will provide mentorship opportunities, artist microloans, scholarships, and is planning a “Summer Sampling” camp that partners with other Pivot Center tenants to give students the opportunity to work. with various art forms.

The maker space will be available to artists for a monthly fee to use the equipment and meeting rooms when needed.

The FIG is working to make its space accessible to everyone. Recently, the organization received a grant from the Cuyahoga County Council for Developmental Disabilities. The funds will be used to adapt and expand FIG programming for people with disabilities, to become an “everything means everything” space, Kluk said.

And – most importantly – the FIG team will provide opportunities for Cleveland artists of all skill levels.

“We have the artists who have presented at MOCA Cleveland, and we have designers who have presented at MOMA in New York, and then we have very young designers who have just started their careers, and they are all here together,” said Mikho-Misho.

“Some are extremely experienced and some are brand new,” Kluk added. “We hope it will generate this network of artists who can rely on each other.”

Find more information about FIG at futureinkgraphics.com.

Future Ink Graphics space and gallery

(Image courtesy of FIG)

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