“When I draw and paint, I feel like I am dancing.” RB
Rita Blitt, award winning painter, sculptor and filmmaker, has been creating art for seven decades. Her work celebrates her love of nature, music, dance and the spontaneous flow of movement captured in the drawn gesture. Her art, recording her enthusiasm for life, has been seen throughout the world.
Aspen, Colorado, has been a primary inspiration in Rita Blitt’s life. In 2011, her art was featured on the cover of the Aspen Music festival’s program book.
Referring to “Abyss of Time," a collaboration between composer Michael Udow and artist Rita Blitt, Martin J. Sherwin, Pulitzer Prize winning author, University Professor of History and Art History, George Mason University wrote:
“Abyss of Time is an astonishingly beautiful integration of painting and music. Watching it is an experience akin to drifting through MOMA on a cloud of mesmerizing music. At times the paintings seem to be the musicians, and at other times the music seems to be painting. It is a technically perfect documentary that demonstrates how intimately connected are our aural and visual senses.”
Commenting on film "Collaborating with the Past,” with music of holocaust victim Pavel Haas and Rita Blitt drawings inspired by the music, Ida Simchowitz wrote:
"Looking and listening to 'Collaborating with the Past' made me immediately relate and visualize the flames of the 'Burning Bush' of the Bible with the flames and cinders of the gas chambers. In your recent creations, the marriage of painting, music and dancing seems very inspiring.'
Blitt films have received numerous awards. “Caught in Paint,” a collaboration with choreographer David Parsons, the Parsons dancers, and photographer Lois Greenfield has received 16 awards and been shown in over 130 film festivals throughout the world. In 2008, Moving Pictures Magazine showed “Caught in Paint" at a Film Festival party in Cannes, France.
Blitt’s words, ”Kindness is contagious. Catch it!", sent all over the world in hopes of making the world a better place, inspired the film “What Kindness Means to Me.”
In addition to her paintings and sculpture being shown in over 70 one person exhibitions, Blitt's monumental sculpture, up to 60 feet in height, are seen in many states in America, Japan and Singapore.
Blitt works can be seen in museums and private collections. The Blitt Archive, a collection of Blitt’s most important pieces created throughout her life, is being established at the Mulvane Museum, Washburn University, Topeka, Kansas. A small building connected to Washburn’s concert hall will show changing exhibitions from the Blitt Archive. The new building will open in 2017.
In 2000 Yehuda Hanani, international cello soloist and professor wrote:
“Rita Blitt’s art and life are inseparable. Every gesture, in both, is borne on the wings of spontaneous responses unfettered by self-consciousness and guided by childlike purity and trust, immediacy, and an unshakable belief in ultimate goodness. Her constant search for the spirit and essence of reality is accompanied by a sense of wonder and mischief. She lovingly conveys with experienced choreographic lines her vision of the world, where the kinetic energy of dance and an entire musical universe are transformed into the realm of the visual. The sculpture and drawings are by turn fluid and harmonious or rhythmic and staccato. In each instance they resonate with primal memories of collective symbols.”
Lansing McLoskey - Composer
Lansing McLoskey has been described as "a major talent and a deep thinker with a great ear" by the American Composers Orchestra, "an engaging, gifted composer writing smart, compelling and fascinating music" by Gramophone Magazine, and "a distinctive voice in American music.” His music has an emotional intensity that appeals to academic and amateur alike, defying traditional stylistic pigeonholes.
McLoskey’s music has been performed in sixteen countries on six continents, and has won more than two dozen national and international awards, including the prestigious Goddard Lieberson Fellowship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the International Joint Wind Quintet Project Commission Competition, and most recently the 2014 Red Note Festival Composition Competition and a 2013 Aaron Copland Recording Grant. In 2009 he became the only composer in the 45 year history of the ISU New Music Festival to win both the chamber music and orchestral composition awards; both blind-juried national competitions with two independent panels. Recent performances include concerts in Berlin, Finland, Italy, Spain, Mexico, Colombia, the UK, Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, Cincinnati, Miami and performances at over a dozen music festivals in the past two years alone. Recent commissions include a concerto for Triton Brass and a consortium of wind ensembles, and new works for the Cincinnati Vocal Arts Ensemble, the newEar Ensemble for their 20th anniversary season, Chatham Baroque, the JWQP consortium of wind quintets, the soundSCAPE Festival in Maccagno, Italy, Ensemble Berlin PianoPercussion, and ensemberlino vocale in Berlin. He has been a Guest Composer or Composer-in-Residence at Aspen, the Tanglewood Institute, the soundSCAPE Festival, Missouri Chamber Music Festival, Carolina Chamber Music Festival, and the Charlotte New Music Festival (summer of 2015).
Professor of Composition at the University of Miami, Frost School of Music, his music is released on Albany Records, Wergo Schallplatten, Capstone, Tantara, and Beauport Classics. 2013 saw the release of three critically acclaimed CDs, including Specific Gravity: Chamber Works by Lansing McLoskey and The Unheard Music, including his multi-award-winning concerto What We Do Is Secret for brass and wind ensemble.