WDIV-TV shares a recently discovered local treasure –
When glass artist Shawn Bungo and his wife moved to Ann Arbor from Knoxville, Tennessee six months ago, they knew moving to a new city during a pandemic would be a challenge. No stranger to community collaboration, Bungo decided to engage with locals through virtual scavenger hunts for small glass works he would hide across town — and they were an overnight hit. He originally started the tradition while going on walks with his dog, Leo, in Knoxville.
“Being a glass artist, you have a lot of pieces that don’t come out, so that’s what started that,” said Bungo. “When I moved up here, after the pandemic started, I started doing that again where I would just go around and randomly hide things and put my card with them — typically in downtown Ann Arbor. I really connected with the community with that.”
On his many walks, Bungo became fascinated with the city’s numerous Little Free Libraries. He shifted his scavenger hunts to showcase the various library boxes around town — which inspired him to relaunch a project he created in Knoxville.
“I just recently put it back up two weeks ago and I shared it with the Ann Arbor Townies group on Facebook,” said Bungo. “As soon as I did that, I almost immediately got people involved in it and it’s been really fun.”
He said he’s received about a dozen miniature paintings and other small items in the 12×12-inch box, some with handwritten notes. “Over the years, I’ve gotten poems, photographs — I’m open to everything,” said Bungo. He said it has served as a fun way to engage with other Ann Arborites during the pandemic.
“With people being so isolated right now, I think it’s the perfect time to do something like this, “ he said. “It allows me to connect with people because we haven’t been able to.” Bungo was supposed to show at the Ann Arbor Art Fair last summer, and with the event being canceled, he felt like he missed out on a true introduction both to Ann Arbor’s art scene and its residents. For now, keep an eye out for his latest adventures with Leo and his front yard gallery. You might just find a tiny treasure — if you look close enough.
story: wdivtv,clickondetroit, meredith bruckner – photos: shawn bungo, bungo glass
“art is too important not to share.”
‘glitter soup’ from art candy
years ago, when visiting my daughter in australia, i met her friend jenni gray, (the artist behind art candy), and she has remained a friend to both of us ever since. while visiting, we had tea, a tour of the space where her art happens, and she even let me peek into a drawer filled with glitter. as a lifelong fan of glitter, it was like magic, and what could be better?
over the years, i’ve followed her work, and have become the lucky owner of some of her art. jenni works with mixed media creating beautiful whimsical art and cards. when she told me that her recent piece, named ‘glitter soup’ reminded her of me, i was honored.
jenni’s origin story is this: “Art Candy began at art school inspired by a love of language, especially slang, colour and the sheer exuberence of enjoying life !” she has certainly lived up to that and more. take a peek at her work in the link below, it’s sure to put a smile on your face.
Sweetness with soul.
“from soup, comes stars”
what the glitter soup turned into
“if art doesn’t make us better, then what on earth is it for?”
art from discarded loose parts – recycled phones and cords
“it’s not where you take things from – it’s where you take them to.”
image credit: *telephone sheep by jean luc cornec, artists without borders