Dueling Art Shows Feature Renowned Bridgman Muralist from Kalamazoo to Bridgman

Her work has adorned ArtPrize in Grand Rapids, ArtHop in Kalamazoo, and is evident in multiple public locations and now, professional muralist Pam Kirkham from Bridgman has two concurrent shows in Michigan's Great Southwest ranging from Kalamazoo to Bridgman with hopes you'll have a chance to check them out.

The first of her shows was actually slated to end this week under the original agreement, however it has proven so popular that the team at Webster's Prime, a top flight dining room at Kalamazoo's Radisson Plaza Hotel has extended the show through Labor Day, Monday, September 3rd.

That display is part of ArtHop Kalamazoo, after the Arts Council of Greater Kalamazoo invited Kirkham to display in a well-known venue that has been a Kalamazoo ArtHop participant for many years. Originally established as a July show only, Webster's Prime requested the extension through the balance of the summer and so you can find her work, Fluid Movement in the vestibule leading to the Radisson Tasting Room, where some of Pam's Fight or Flight series is exhibited on the long main wall.

At the Radisson, all told, nine large works are on view, with the largest work being an impressive five feet by three feet, entitled After the Storm. Webster's Prime is a popular spot for a leisurely drink, a fine meal, or great entertainment. In fact, the Saxsquatch Jazz Quartet entertained the crowd at the opening reception for the July 6th event.

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Meanwhile, closer to home, Kirkham's work is showcased prominently inside the new Early Bird Eatery on Red Arrow Highway, near the corner of Red Arrow and Lake Street in Bridgman. The new diner has allowed Kirkham to use their space as a gallery to display some of the her Fight or Flight series including two multi-canvas pieces.

Ascension to the Rainbow Sun consists of six canvas panels and is a colorful, uplifting work inspired by her anticipated trip to Jamaica. She says, "I knew I was in for a treat before I left for the island, but when I arrived, I couldn't sleep for the first three nights. The colors and sounds of Jamaica just overwhelmed me! It is truly a gorgeous, stimulating place for an artist to visit." Ascension at Sunrise, a three-panel work, shows Lake Michigan seagulls soaring high in the skies above, that's a familiar site at the nearby Weko Beach in Bridgman. Those panels are shown in the photo accompanying this story on Moody on the Market.

Nancy Chiovari, a local photographer and friend of Kirkham, took the photo that inspired the painting, although the artist took the liberty of changing the lighting to that of a sunrise. Other paintings on view at The Early Bird Eatery include an abstract, Mountain Majesties, Flight from One World to Another, a fantasized version of a Rainbow Finch, and Birth of the Sun, a work based on the god, Khepri, who was believed by ancient Egyptians to move the sun across the sky from east to west each morning.

You may well have already seen Pamela's work exhibited not only at ArtPrize in Grand Rapids in recent years, but she also painted the lobby mural at the Pike Family Funeral Home in Bridgman...the hot air balloon mural at the Dairy Queen on Niles Avenue in St. Joseph...and two public art pieces displayed in downtown St. Joseph -- Krasl Dreamboat commissioned by the Krasl in 2008 and Something Fishy, a car painted in years past. She taught art classes at the Krasl for ten years and the Box Factory for the Arts for three years.

The artist also makes ceramic tiles from small sections of large paintings that are available at the following local venues:

  • Fernwood Botanical Garden near Niles
  • The Box Factory for the Arts in St. Joseph
  • The Lubeznik Center for the Arts Gift Shop in Michigan City
  • Sandpiper Gift Shop in Bridgman
  • FlyingCreatureTiles on Etsy.com, her online store

While the Kalamazoo show ends on Labor Day, the Early Bird Eatery exhibit is scheduled to remain in place through the end of September, so make your way down to either show and enjoy the talents of a homegrown artist gaining well-earned recognition across Michigan's Great Southwest.

You can also learn more about the artist on her website by clicking this link: http://pamkirkham.com