Zach Widgren's First International Show

Our Knoxville, Tennessee artist, Zach Widgren has been diving into the faraway lands of Taiwan for the past several months and recently opened his first international show there. This was a collaborative show with local photographer, Totu Kuo, and was held in Kaohsiung on February 12th. Congrats, Zach! We are very proud to see you out there gettin' it worldwide. Stay tuned for announcements about another show in Taiwan coming soon.

Bearden Middle School Sessions

For the 2011 - 2012 School Year, we had to privilege of working with some local middle school students in Knoxville, TN. Michael Weineinger, a native New Yorker, and now an art teacher at Bearden Middle School, has been teaching his students about contemporary art, street art, and graffiti. He invited us to BMS for some collaborative projects that proved to be valuable for all parties involved.

In Fall 2011, Lifted Lab gave presentations at Bearden Middle School to 6th and 7th grade art students about modern day artists. We talked about Bigfoot, Infamous JeanClaude, Grifter, Zach Widgren, Berk Visual, Lifter Baron, and other young creatives. Students got to see a powerpoint presentation about the work of these artists, and collaborative projects they produce. We explored the idea of making a career from art, and encouraged kids to follow their creativity. 

Students began working on a project about cultural diversity in September. They were given the assignment to create a mask from  layers of colored paper that represents a unique culture from another part of the world. After completing this project, a handful of the masks would be selected for an art show in downtown Knoxville hosted by Lifted Lab. The art show was titled "These Funky Masks" and took place in November of 2011.

In Spring of 2012, Lifted Lab returned to BMS for an evening themed around New York City. We set up a workshop table for kids, parents, grandparents to stop by and see art, prints, toys, apparel, books, and stickers by Lifted Lab artists and New York artists that we're inspired by. Kids learned about the origins of graffiti and how to practice bubble letters and hand styles. 

Shout out to Michael Weininger for the opportunity to put all of this together and big up to all the inspiring, talented kids following their creativity at BMS.

"From Kentouchy With Love" Pix + Reopening

Fireproof Gallery bounced back from Winter hiatus last month with the opening of a new show called "From Kentouchy With Love." Creators ZACH WIDGREN, Katy Smith, and Katie Moseley have been collaborating on this space since its opening about a year ago. The newest show is a reflection on Kentucky (Widgren's home state) and tells a few stories within the murals, paintings, and sculpture pieces. As per usual, quarter pipes and a stage for music is part of the warehouse installation. 

The show opened last month on April 14th and April 21, and will be reopening for another show this Saturday, May 5th. There will be a few local acts playing music starting around 8:00pm and lasting until late. The first 20 people through the door receive a small painting and 1 lucky person will win a large scale artwork. 

Katie Smith, amiga, Katie Moseley with a hand sewn AK-47
Plush AK-47 by Katie Moseley

"From Kentouchy With Love III"
 Saturday, May 5
8:00pm - 3:00am
Fireproof Gallery
201 Randolph Street
Knoxville, TN 37917

$5 / BYOB
music all night
skateboards welcome!

Widgren FSYC Photo Recap

Here are just a few pictures from last Friday at the Fort Sanders Yacht Club...Zach's final show in Knoxville for now. He leaves Tennessee to start fresh in New Orleans this week. We're excited for your growth and new opportunities, Zach!

Happy Birthday again to FSYC aka Barcade! You're a crucial cornerstone in Knoxville's obscure art scene.

New Work By Katy Smith

Katy Smith, Zach Widgren, and Katie Moseley



Captain Shirly In Action, Making Screen Prints

Barcade Anniversary & Widgren Art Show

 TONIGHT the Fort Sanders Yacht Club, AKA the beloved Barcade, will be having their four year anniversary party! It's hard to believe four year have passed already since this hole in the wall opened up and become our favorite place to have a low-key beer. The FSYC is still a secret to some, many people have no idea this dive bar lined with 25¢ throwback arcade games exists. 

Widgren at the Barcade in 2009

Zach Widgren is part of the OG Yacht Club Crew, and has helped them line their walls with local artists' work each month for First Friday. This has been a home base for Zach's art, too. It only seems appropriate for him to be displaying his work during the anniversary party. Alongside his paintings, local lovelies Katy Smith and Katie Moseley will be hanging their work as well. 

Zach has stated this will be his last art show in Knoxville for now, as he wishes to focus entirely on his new project and book, By The Way The Bird Flies. In just a few days, he'll be relocating to New Orleans, so make sure you swing through to send him off and show him some love! Through his many art shows, events, and founding the almighty Fireproof Gallery, Zach has really helped the art scene evolve in Knoxville. Cheers, Widgren!

The Barcade rules. They have around 70 different beers, bottles and draft. There is a secret special from 4pm-midnight, and they will be screen printing shirts for their loyal deckhands and shipmates. Bring it!

721 17th Street Knoxville, TN 37916
4 Year Anniversary Party
Friday, March 2, 2012

Zach Widgren at Knoxville Museum of Art TOMORROW

Tomorrow night, Zach Widgren will be displaying some of this work at "The Next Level," located on the 3rd floor of the Knoxville Museum of Art. There will be some live music and a beer & wine bar. Free entry. Get your Friday night started off nicely and let the town know you support new creative minds!

5:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Knoxvilel Museum of Art
1050 World's Fair Park
Knoxville, TN 37916

Stay tuned for updates on his current story telling portrait project "By The Way The Bird Flies!"

By The Way The Birds Flies

Zach Widgren is embarking on a new project and completely readjusting his focus for the new year. After closing Fireproof Gallery for a Winter hiatus, he has taken up the goal of illustrating and publishing his first book.

By The Way The Bird Flies will be comprised of hand-drawn portraits that literally tell stories about each person: after individuals are recording talking about a favorite memory, words are weaved together to form the face of their keeper.

Zach plans to travel all over the U.S. and possibly other countries to meet new people, find inspiration, collaborate creatively, and pass on stories from those he encounters. To help fund this project, Zach has set up a Kickstarter that runs until January 20.

Let the man himself tell you more about By The Way The Bird Flies

A small donation of $5 gets your name published in the book as a contributor, and larger donations will come with a copy of the book, original art work, and more depending on the amount. 

Wishing Zach all the best on his travels! There is no better teacher than experience. 

Peep the latest cities, portraits, and maybe even get yourself in the book by checking out

Fireproof Winter Hiatus

Saturday will be the final showing of "Gracious Crumple" at Fireproof Gallery, which is the latest installation from ZACH WIDGREN, Katy Smith, Katie Moseley, Amanda McCall, Dave Grimes, Andy Fagan, Rachel Gurley, and others. 

This installation differs from the previous shows in that there are no canvases. All artists have contributed to wall space directly with spray paint and installation pieces. 

After the "Gracious Crumple Farewell," Fireproof Gallery will be taking a Winter hiatus to prepare for next year's master plans. Come get it in one last time with all the art goons of Knoxville! BYOB as usual, and there will be plenty of live music through out the night, as usual. 

Haunted Mansion...lights on.

If you missed all of your opportunities to see the haunted house, well you got lucky because there is one final showing this Saturday as well. The lights will be on and everyone is free to do a walk-through in the light to see all the work that went into creating this creepy space. 

"Gracious Crumple Farewell"
Saturday, November 12 
10:00 pm - 3:00 am
Fireproof Gallery
201 Randolph Street
Knoxville, TN
$5 entry

Asheville Collaboration: Saturday

Manifest Collective is group of healing arts practitioners whom are reaching out to the Appalachian community through events that offer yoga, meditation workshops, massage therapy, live music, and more. Their goal of spreading a holistic awareness also includes showcasing art that expresses a sense of consciousness.  They have looked to Lifted Lab as their inspiration for accompanying installations at their events.

The latest event being hosted by Manifest Collective is titled “Hypno Yoga” and takes place this Saturday in Asheville, NC. Beginning at 9:00pm, there will be a yoga and meditation workshop focusing on connecting with the inner Self.  Lifted Lab will be featured in an installation of soulful art pieces to help participants visually identify various levels of awareness.

The installation will include paintings and prints from BIGFOOT, INFAMOUS JEANCLAUDE, ZACH WIDGREN, BERK VISUAL, GRIFTER, Dalek, Sam Flores, Free Gums, TSL, Katy Smith, Andy Reed, and Stan Lee.

For the rest of the evening, there will be a show featuring local musicians Aligning Minds, Perileyes, Futexture, and This Is Art. 

We are very pleased to add that Mamma Chia will be sponsoring Lifted Lab again, and will be supplying their tasty organic chia seed beverages for FREE. Big thank you and lots of respect out to this company! 

"Hypno Yoga"
Saturday, November 5, 2011
8:00pm - 3:00am 
The Garage at Biltmore

Haunted Warehouse

Fireproof Gallery has decided to turn the back end of the warehouse into a haunted house of art for the Halloween holiday. The old Fireproof Storage building that houses the gallery is already fairly creepy, and supposedly haunted.

After many hours and days of work, the Trash Wave Collective, which includes ZACH WIDGREN and the other creators behind Fireproof, have transformed the baron industrial space into a two-story adventure of oddities. Among this maze, guests will find puzzles, multiple chambers to navigate through, and the artists dressed as characters waiting to mess with your mind. 

The Haunted House will be open the weekend before Halloween and through the beginning of November. On Halloween, The Pilot Light will be hosting a party in the main Fireproof space and the haunted house will be open during this time as well.

Each night will be slightly different with additions and subtractions of certain elements. 

Artists: Zach Widgren, Katy Smith, Katie Moseley, Rachel Gurley, DL, Andy Fagan, Christian Cox, Wesley Wyrick, Dave Grimes, Andrea Markel, Brandon Biondo, Dylan Dawkins, Cole Murphy, Preston Proffit, and Amanda McCall

"Who Will Grow The Corn"
October 27 - November 12 (Thursdays and Fridays)
9:00 pm - 12:00 am
Fireproof Gallery
201 Randolph Street Knoxville, TN
Tickets: $5 at the door

Dissecting Your Duality

Lifted Lab is all about promoting progressive creative arts, and recently has teamed up with ManiFest Collective, a group of women teaching and promoting the healing arts. They incorporate yoga, massage, reiki, sound therapy, aromatherapy, art therapy, mediation, and more while reaching out to communities in East TN and North Carolina to provide classes, work shops, and events inspired by holistic health and healing.

We collaborated earlier this year during Unity Healing Arts Festival, and now we meet again for an event titled, "Dissecting Your Duality."

Lifted Lab will be curating an art installation with black and white pieces that deal with topics such as: Positive vs. Negative States of Mind, Physical Existence as Both Particle and Wave, Dark vs. Light, Male vs. Female, Hermetic Philosophy, and Balancing of Dualistic Characteristics.

This installation will help further interpret and visualize the vibe of the workshop. Work from ZACHARY WIDGREN, Katy Smith, Stan Lee, Hedges, and GRIFTER will be shown in the installation, and there will also be a Lifted Lab merch booth to browse through.

Mamma Chia will also be sponsoring this event with bottles of their delicious, HEALTHY chia seed drinks for everyone to try for FREE.

This stuff is amazing and tastes like a jello drink. Chia seeds are an ancient super food that give you an instant mental and physical boost because they are full of antioxidants, vitamins, calcium, protein, fiber, and omegas. Please look into their site for more info.

We are so excited to have support from this honorable and conscious-minded company.

Dissecting Your Duality
October 7, 2011 at 9:00 PM
Galaxy Lounge
216 East Main Street, Johnson City, TN  379604
Tickets: $10 at the door

Black and White Closing Party

The "Black and White" installation at Fireproof has had some amazing showings since its opening in August. Musical musings from Fine Peduncle, Teams, Dolphyn Rydyr, Dumb Lunch, and many others really helped make this place pop on the Saturday night parties, while ZACH WIDGREN and company have kept the space refreshed and reblessed with new art pieces each week. Contributing artists for the final show, "Black and White VII," taking place this Saturday, September 24 include:

Zach Widgren
Katy Smith
Amanda McCall
Katie Moseley
Dave Grimes
Rachel Gurley
Preston Proffit
Michael Watson
Andy Fagan

There are surprise performances which will be announced later this week. Stay up on the Facebook page for updates.  There is a $5.00 donation based cover and BYOB. Don't forget your skate board!

"Black and White VII"
Saturday, September 24, 2011
10:00 PM - 4:00 AM
Fireproof Gallery
201 Randolph St. 
Knoxville, TN 37917

Pay Attention: Your Weekend Agenda!

Hey Southeastern folks and friends, there are some cool events going on that you should make a priority this Friday and Saturday.

FRIDAY - August 19, 2011

Lifted Lab will be hosting a pop-up gallery shop inside of the CiderHouse in Knoxville, TN during the DNAEBEATS show. We will have a booth with art work, prints, tee shirts, jewelry, and more.

Artists contributing to the gallery shop:
Daniel Maw with Jarred Elrod (Drugtown)

112 Ramsey Street Knoxville, TN 37921
August 19, 2011 from 9:00 PM - 3:00 AM

In Charlotte, NC at Black Sheep, INFAMOUS JEANCLAUDE will be debuting new works at the much anticipated "Two Eyes, Two Minds" solo show. Please peep our previous blog about this show to get more info.

"Two Eyes, Two Minds"
Opening: Friday, August 19, 2011 at 7:00 PM
1504 Camden Road, Suite 200 Charlotte, NC

SATURDAY, August 20th:

Fireproof Gallery in Knoxville, TN will be opening its third showing of "Black and White" with a warehouse-style dance party from musical guests TEAMS, Fine Peduncle, Persona La Ave, Walsh, and DOLPHYNRYDYR. Lifted Lab artist, ZACH WIDGREN has been working non-stop on this space, adding to and altering it each week. Check out pix from the previous show, and you'll see why you need to come by this weekend.

Saturday, August 20th from 10:00 PM - LATE
Fireproof Gallery
201 Randolph Street
Knoxville, TN 37917

HAPPY WEEKEND, Y'ALL! See ya around town...

Black and White PIX + Re:Opening Dates

Over the weekend, Fireproof Gallery in Knoxville opened its second art show, "Black and White." The warehouse space was completely redone from the last show (check out pix from "Golden Doodle"), and gave hundreds of attendants a psychedelically dazzling black and white vortex of art to dive into. More art and installations from ZACH WIDGREN and fellow Fireproof artists will be added for the upcoming openings, which are listed below the photos.

 Katy Smith

Hand-sewn guns by Katie Moseley

Wall by Amanda McCall

Zach Widgren

Zach Widgren

Zach Widgren

Katy Smith

Record sculpture by David Grimes

Zach Widgren

"Black and White II" 
Opens on Saturday, August 13th at 9:00 PM
Live Music:Yung Life, Horquillas, Ghost of Machu Picchu, Dumb Lunch

Opens on Saturday, August 20th at 10:00 PM
Live music from: TEAMS, Fine Peduncle, Person La Ave, Walsh, and DOLPHYNRYDYR

Fire Proof Gallery
201 Randolph Street
Knoxville, TN 37917

Don't forget to wear black and white. 

Black and White

Fireproof Gallery in Downtown Knoxville will be opening its 2nd show this evening with new work from ZACH WIDGREN, Katy Smith, Amanda McCall, Preston Proffit, Dave Grimes, and other local artists. There will be a full lineup of local music as well, including Faux Ferocious, Hellbender, Peer Pressure, and Marina Orchestra. Come feast your ears and eyes tonight at the newest and most contemporary art space Knoxville has ever seen.

"Black and White"
Fireproof Gallery
201 Randolph St. Knoxille TN, 37917

Opening celebeation:
Saturday, August 5, 2011
7:00 PM - Late

Golden Doodle Art Auction

Tomorrow night, Fireproof Gallery will be auctioning off a selection of work from the "Golden Doodle" exhibition that has been running over the past couple of months. "We will be auctioning off about five pieces from each of the artists who were involved in the Golden Doodle show. This event will be an opportunity to purchase artwork from some of the up and coming artists in Knoxville and support the newest contemporary art gallery in the heart of your city. Come put your bid in!

There will also be older work in the gallery store from each of the artists. So if you cannot make it out this night or want artwork for a good price, check out the gallery store.

25% of the profit from the auctioned art will go toward helping the gallery expand and toward making our next show even better than the last."

Artists included in this auction are: Zach Widgren, Katy Smith, Amanda McCall, Preston Proffitt, and Michael Watson. 

201 Randolph Street
Knoxville, TN 37917
Auction: Friday, July 8, 2011

5:00p.m.-6:00p.m. - Chance to look over all pieces that will be in auction.
6:00p.m.-8:00p.m. - Auction will start promptly at 6 and end at 8.

See you there!