As the jars of ashes started to line up, he decided to incorporate them into his artwork, so he could tell their stories. Local filmmaker Jeff Theman (Guilty Till Proven Innocent
) followed him around while he worked and has shot a documentary movie about Kelly's artwork.
The trailer for the resulting film, Train Ave.
, will premiere on Sunday, Aug. 26, when Kelly’s exhibit, Dogs of Train Ave., opens with a reception that takes place from 1 to 3 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 26, at the Derek Hess Gallery.
The gallery has teamed up with Friends of the Cleveland Kennel, an organization that features a program that assists low-income families with pet resources. They'll be on hand for the opening. Inspired by Kelly's work, a new fund was started called The Dignity Endowment. It provides End of Life pet services to low-income households. There will be a couple volunteers with adoptable dogs for guests to meet, and they'll also be on hand to discuss the organization's different programs.
A renowned visual and tattoo artist, Sean Jason Kelly stumbled upon a dead dog along Train Ave. a few years ago. After he discovered the poor animal in a garbage bag, he found several more through subsequent months and years and began getting them cremated out of respect, so they didn’t end up tossed in a landfill with trash.