Cleveland's art colony noshed on carrot sticks and cheese balls at the Galleria on Thursday night as the United Way of Greater Cleveland
debuted scaled-down renderings for this year's Guitarmania
Of the more than 100 artists who have submitted 156 designs for the nine-foot-tall Stratocaster replicas, partners Christopher Lees and Jordan Perme win the "most prolific" award. The twentysomething couple have entered six proposals, like "'33s & '45s," featuring a vinyl-and-chrome stereo turntable affixed to the body of the guitar. And in "Just Wait a Minute...It'll Change," Lees and Perme poke fun at Cleveland's changing weather patterns by fashioning the guitar into an umbrella, with a sunny street scene on one side and its stormy counterpart on the other.
A few of the designs pay tribute to rock-and-roll legends like Alice Cooper, Roy Orbison, and Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead, in addition to homages to Cleveland's Robert Lockwood Jr. and Gerald Levert. And in "Cleveland's Screaming," Jim Lanza remembers local bands from the '70s through the '90s, like Keelhaul, Lurid, and Lucky Pierre.
Some artists favor Cleveland landmarks in their renderings. In her "eye-catching jumble of animals," Melissa Rohrs spotlights Metroparks Zoo in "Zoo Rock." George Kocar depicts the Hard Rock Cafe.
Lisa Elias — a Brunswick dentist by day — turns breast-cancer activist in her Pepto Bismol-colored "Passionately Pink for the Cure." And Todd V. invites passersby to whip out their Sharpie markers to draw on "Cubicle Doodles." At the end of the summer, he'll outline each squiggle in paint as his contribution to the benefit.
The United Way will plant all the guitars outside the Rock Hall during the Memorial Day weekend, before strategically placing them throughout the city for potential buyers to inspect. They'll then go on the auction block back at the Rock Hall in October. — Cris Glaser