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Steven M. Cummings '10 Visually Captures D.C.'s Art Man in Washington Post Feature

M.F.A. in Photographic & Electronic Media Candidate Takes Photographic Journey With Friend and Collaborator

Posted 02.23.10 by mica media relations

He lives this thing. It's rare you find someone willing to starve for art.
- Steven M. Cummings '10 on Bryan K. Adams, aka Art Man 

Steven M. Cummings, Art Man

The centerpiece Style story in the Feb. 23 Washington Post, Art Man cometh, follows Bryan K. Adams, aka Art Man, and his friend, collaborator and personal documentarian/photographer Steven M. Cummings '10. Art Man, who strives to brighten D.C. streets with found-object art that makes people think and laugh at the same time, met Cummings, a M.F.A. in Photographic & Electronic Media candidate, last year at an art event in Washington, and they have inspired each other ever since. The Post article--teased on the cover of the A section with a photo of Art Man, his children and Cummings--features nine photos Cummings has taken of Art Man and his artwork throughout the city. (There is a slide show of additional images online.)

An excerpt from the Post article by DeNeen L. Brown:

His collaborator, Steven M. Cummings, an art photographer and grad student at the Maryland Institute College of Art who owns a studio in Northeast, is explaining how much Adams is obsessed with art. When Cummings, 44, met Adams last [February] at an open house in Anacostia, he was impressed by the artist's mission, his creativity, his need to live and breathe art. The artist and the photographer became almost inseparable, each encouraging the other to push his work beyond self-imposed limits.

"I've learned so much about art from dealing with him," Cummings says. "I thought [Adams's] work should be seen. It's got to be seen."

Adams lives in a Never Never Land of art, obsessed the things he finds -- things some would call junk -- and making them beautiful and then putting them in places that might otherwise be ugly, desolate and neglected. And then he watches as other people look at what he has created. There is glee as he sees people's reactions: puzzled at first, and then they either get it or they don't.

... "It's not fake," says Cummings, walking through [Adams's] I Am Art Experience Gallery. "He lives this thing. It's rare you find someone willing to starve for art."

Photo credit: Steven M. Cummings, Art Man (detail), 2010.

Founded in 1826, Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) is the oldest continuously degree-granting college of art and design in the nation. The College enrolls nearly 3,500 undergraduate, graduate and continuing studies students from 49 states and 52 countries in fine arts, design, electronic media, art education, liberal arts, and professional studies degree and non-credit programs. With art and design programs ranked in the top ten by U.S. News and World Report, MICA is pioneering interdisciplinary approaches to innovation, research, and community and social engagement. Alumni and programming reach around the globe, even as MICA remains a cultural cornerstone in the Baltimore/Washington region, hosting hundreds of exhibitions and events annually by students, faculty and other established artists.