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Berlin, MD 21811
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Lifestyle

Dew Tour athletes take time to view local artwork

8/23/12 | By Nathan Brunet, Staff Writer

BERLIN — While the past weekend’s Dew Tour in Ocean City allowed residents to watch their favorite world-class athletes compete in person, it also gave those same athletes an opportunity to meld with the local life.

On Saturday, Matt Dove, a local retired professional skateboarder and artist, held an art show and reception at his newly relocated gallery, Punk Rock Fish Studio in Berlin that brought visits from many of the athletes who competed in the Dew Tour.

Among those who stopped in to visit, eat and drink with residents were skateboarders Steve Caballero and Christian Hosoi.

“There’s a lot of people from out of town that have never eaten a blue crab and we just wanted to embrace the Eastern Shore lifestyle,” Dove said of the decision to stock his reception with local fare.

“I have known a lot of these athletes for 20 years,” he said. “It’s awesome because they are people I never thought I would meet when I was young.”

Although food from Waterman’s Seafood Company and beer from both Burley Oak Brewing Company and Evolution Craft Brewing Company was a hit with the approximately 200 people who attended, the main attraction was the studio’s art. Dove refers to it as alternative art requiring a person to take a moment and analyze the concept of the piece.

“It’s not about selling the art, but making people think,” he said.

Unlike common art pieces that are made with paints and oils, this alternative art is part of a younger artist movement that utilizes unconventional items such as salvaged materials to create art the general public would not hang up on their walls.

Combining Dove’s alternative art and the Dew Tour is not a stretch, as the art gallery operator said the two subjects, “just go together” and that the majority of skateboarders are artistically inclined.

“We’re independent thinkers,” Dove said. “As an artist, you have to break boundaries and express yourself through your artwork.”

Berlin Mayor Gee Williams may be outside of Dove’s target demographic, but he still had many positive things to say about his experience at the art show.

“It was a great mixture of people from around the country,” he said.

The mayor added that the studio, which opened in Berlin three months ago, is a sign of Berlin’s expansion in more ways than one.

“There was a time when a lot of space in downtown Berlin was used for storage,” he said. “It’s nice to continue to see that change.”

Punk Rock Fish Studio will also benefit from the town’s ongoing project that will extend sidewalks down Broad Street from Main Street. Construction is expected to finish in a few weeks.

Dove is now fine-tuning all parts of his newly located gallery that was previously on Route 611, in hopes that it will be a sanctuary for young and edgy local artists.

“We want to keep it creative with the emphasis of new and alternative art,” said Dove.

To find out more about future events at Punk Rock Fish Studio in Berlin, visit Matthew Dove on Facebook.

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