Laney Contemporary has thought of some creative ways to stay connected to its audience and to the local and international art community by launching a new online series entitled “Present Tense.”

The series focuses on our collective time during social distancing and the current happenings of the gallery’s represented artists and friends.

Launched on Saturday, March 28 with local artist Katherine Sandoz in her studio, there has already been a promising number of viewers, engagement and encouragement to continue the intriguing series coming from Laney Contemporary as they respond to the change in viewing due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

By using the Instagram Live Streaming platform, viewers get a chance to see into the artists’ intimate world of creation and process, which is not something usually offered to the public. People can ask questions in the moment while the feed is live and even if you can’t be there in real time, you have up to 24 hours to view the stream via IG Stories. The title Present Tense is quite aptly named.

“It’s been interesting what’s happened because I’m getting a lot of responses from artists and viewers…you know people who are really appreciative of having something to watch or engage in,” said Susan Laney, owner of Laney Contemporary.

Scheduling the artists, teaching artists, viewers and clients how to use Instagram Live or how to make the videos, etc., is just an example of the multitude of parts to keep up with, Laney explained.

Staying positive and active during this time of quarantine and economic uncertainty is important to both collective and personal mental health. Laney talked about how staying open if only virtually for the time being is positive and healthy; a complete shutdown is not the positive or healthy option. The importance of the arts is essential to a thriving culture and Savannah is not without its share creative talent.

“I think it is such an incredible gift from these artists to share right now… so yeah, I’m putting it together and organizing it but really I’m just so thankful that these artists are so giving and it’s really inclusive and it’s free,” she said.

“Anyone can view it and anyone can ask questions or leave comments.”

Laney is already thinking about how this could evolve into something more so we’ll definitely keep our ears and eyes open for future virtual installments from Laney Contemporary.

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Join us tonight at 5pm on Instagram Live for PRESENT TENSE #ARTbreak #Q&A #quarantinequestions with @willpennyart and @hello_rachelreese Stay connected with us for programming from our artists and friends including: Insta live mini-studio tours, artist interviews, and our first virtual exhibition. Will Penny Instance viii, 2020 video #ARTbreak #arthappyhour #lightupthedarkness #laneycontemporary #rachelreese #willpennyart #inconversation #videoart #projectionmapping #digitalart

A post shared by Laney Contemporary (@laneycontemporary) on Mar 31, 2020 at 8:57am PDT

Present Tense Live Series Schedule:

Saturday 3/28/20: Katherine Sandoz in the studio

Sunday 3/29/20: Gonzalo Hernandez and Todd Schroeder Q&A

Monday 3/30/20: Sharon Norwood in the studio

Tuesday 3/31/20: Rachel Reese and Will Penny Q&A

Wednesday 4/1/20: Betsy Cain in the studio

Thursday 4/2/20: Melissa Messina and Marcus Kenney Q&A

Friday 4/3/20: Pamela Wiley in the studio

Saturday 4/5/20: Lisa Jaye Young and Sharon Norwood Q&A

Sunday 4/6/20: Craig Drennen in the studio

Tuesday 4/7/20: Liz Robb and Pamela Wiley Q&A

Wednesday 4/8/20: Namwon Choi in the studio

Thursday 4/9/20: Robert Morris and Katherine Sandoz Q&A

Friday 4/10/20: Marcus Kenney in the studio

Also with the same moniker is Present Tense, the first online gallery exhibition which will open April 9 with an additional online gallery on Artsy.net (search Laney Contemporary on Artsy.net to find the exhibition).

Organized by Gonzalo Hernandez, the exhibition will feature works by Namwon Choi, Katherine Sandoz, Todd Schroeder, Marcus Kenney, Ansley West Rivers, Will Penny, and Betsy Cain.