Aug 25, 2009

Greg Weaver Art Scene


For about ten years, mid 70's to 80's, Allentown was graced with a one man art machine. Greg Weaver studied at Carnegie Mellon and then returned to the Valley to become artist, promoter and inspiration to dozens of local artists. His large studios, which moved from one low rent location to another over the years, became hubs for innovation and social activity. He was very prolific with his work, and generous with his encouragement. A typical monthly bash involved perhaps a poster by Mark Beyer( now an internationally known underground comic) performance by a jazz group such as Gary Hassey,(Greg also had a band) and perhaps a new showing by a local artist, such as Barnaby Ruhe. The loft parties were always mobbed, by many of the same people who now attend the Museum social events. This art "scene" cost the taxpayers nothing, it was done by artists, and it was real. Greg suffered from diabetes, and eventually lost his sight. Although blind he continued to produce art and inspire people until his death. Several of his works are in the Allentown Museums' permanent collection and his memory is in the hearts' of his friends. The image here is from Mark Beyer, representing an invitation to a Weaver event.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Someone said: "I find a real disconnect between the art patrons and the artists in Allentown. For example the artists themselves become excluded from events and auctions run by the arts organizations because the tickets for these events are so expensive. I even helped plan one of these events and was not even comped a ticket. Some friends invited us to be their guests, and that's the only way we could have attended the event. In a real art scene the artists, musicians, and writers, and even patrons all exchange ideas and learn from one another and it's a great thing. It's not about money or social status."


This is so true at least in Allentown. We remember Gregg and his parties and his art and his wife and his friends and his cows.
The AAM use to have Sat nite openings. Everyone invited. No fees but for drinks.
Such fun. Everyone would be there.
Then new group took over event museum planning. All of a sudden, no "outsiders at all" only patrons and even they only received two tickets.
Attended just a few of these snotty events. Awful. Dull. Few in attendance and those few
would block the food table so no one else could ever even get a cracker.

ironpigpen said...

I remember Greg Weaver.

My mom used to know him.

Nice guy. He painted helmets of the Minnesota Vikings and Dallas Cowboys on the ceiling in our bedroom for my brother and I.

We gave him pictures of the helmets to copy. Apparently, he was not much of a sports guy. The helmets came out nice, though.

He painted a fish for our sister's ceiling. No pictures required.

There was a bunch of Weaver works in the house I grew up in.

Nice tribute to Mr. Weaver, Molovinsky.

My mom moved to Connecticut twenty years ago. She will be pleased to hear somebody wrote about Greg Weaver, for sure. She always thought highly of his work, that I remember.

(My mom has a PhD in art history so I assume she knows a thing or two about good painters)

Anonymous said...

Aftger reading this post Itried to find out more about Mr. Weaver online but not much wasiut there. He was indeed talentedand I would like to know more about this local artist. Some of the people that knew himchould collaborate and start a Wikipedia article about him. It could bring more attention to him and his work and by default draw attention to the valley's local art scene.

Daria said...

I was a wee little one in the late 70's/early 80's when my dad was renting a studio space in Greg's building. I recall watching the nutty artist crew at the parties...I vaguely recall Steve Brosky playing "Do the Dutch" at one of them :)