Friday, December 21, 2012

Pairing Up

I've been working on paired objects for awhile, and recently have started to put wire mountings on them and hang them up on the wall so that I can see how they look arranged in groups.

The first group (see below) is pairs that include a wooden shoe (or shoe last or stretcher) along with a figure made with wood and found objects. Someone visiting the studio asked, "Why are those two things together?" I guess it's the same reason people pair up: They're attracted to each other!

The next group I'm working on is garden shears and loppers paired with figures that have the same splayed posture as the tools with which they're paired.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

New Standing Figures

I have made two new pieces, each about 24 inches tall. They both are holding things in their hands, things that move when the piece is jiggled.

I've made several pieces previously that used the motif  of a puppeteer holding a marionette or puppet.-- at left is a piece that was part of my Rolling Boil series, and at right is a piece built in a small box, currently at Maison Kasini in Montreal.

The piece I just finished (below) is similar. It's called Puppet Master, and is on display at Studio Place Arts (Spa) in the Members Show, cash and carry.

A companion piece, Falconer, also at SPA, holds two insects, one in each hand. They vibrate with the slightest movement:

ARA Opening

Here are the pieces from the previous post installed at the Vermont College of Fine Arts Gallery, photographed during the opening reception.

And a detail from the painting behind the 3D piece:

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Annual ARA Exhibit

The Art Resource Association (ARA) Annual Exhibit is being mounted at College Hall Gallery of the Vermont College of Fine Arts in Montpelier. The Opening Reception is Thursday, November 8, 5-7 PM, and the show runs through December 9. Gallery hours are Friday through Sunday, noon to 4 PM.

I'll be minding the gallery on Sunday, November 18, noon-4, if you want to come by and visit.

I re-configured a piece, adding some figures in the tray where previously there were shells.

I'm also showing a painting from 1999 called Ripples. It seemed to go with the 3D piece.

Friday, October 26, 2012


I've been making sculptures on books for the Celebrate! show at Studio Place Arts (up during the last half of November and December). I scavenged a sculpture that didn't quite work, and used the people. It's great to have a source of lots of characters and not have to make them all from scratch. And whenever I'm using books, there's always the frisson of feeling transgressive ("What!? You're destroying BOOKS??"), and the same thing is true about destroying a piece I've made and previously exhibited. Exhilarating!

Here's the piece. It was called Conversation.  And now it's been transformed into:

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Fallilng People at the Maltex Building

The Falling People have come indoors for the winter, and will be inside at the Maltex Building in Burlington for three months.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Back in the Classroom

Many years ago I used to teach multi-age, first-second-and-third grade, in Montpelier. I got a call from Chris Abrams who had seen my work at the Kent Museum and wondered if I'd share my work with the kindergarteners at East Montpelier Elementary School, who were studying shadows and insects. I was delighted to go into Jamie O'Hare's classroom on October 10 and work with them to make button art with their drawings of insects.

Here's an image from their blog about the workshop showing me exhibiting one of the pieces from In the Web.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Full Circle

The Full Circle exhibit is only up for a few more days, so if you are able to get there, hasten out to the Kent Museum, 7 Old West Church Road,  Kents' Corner in Calais. It's open 10-5 every day through Sunday, October 7, with a closing reception including music and refreshments on October 7th from 3 to 5pm. In addition to the exhibit, there's a silent auction for the Craft Emergency Relief Fund (CERF), which you can bid on while you're there.

The Kent Museum is a beautiful old structure, and each fall it hosts a very short exhibit (this year running from September 27 - October 7). Full Circle was curated by Nel Emlen, David Schutz, and Allyson Evans. Here's the delightful Allyson (who came to my studio to select work for the show), standing by the first wall in the exhibit, where she hung work from In the Web (the biodiversity work that went to Nagoya, Japan in 2010).

 I believe Nel and Allyson hung most of the show, and it is a model of curatorial sensitivity.  The museum consists of many rooms of different sizes, some with white walls, some with walls stripped down to the original lath, and some with patches of historic wallpaper.  With so many different spaces and surfaces, it's amazing and delightful how they managed to place work so that it relates perfectly to other pieces and to the uniqueness of each space.

When I was asked to participate, I thought about the exhibit as an opportunity to show a "full circle" of my work, a bit of a retrospective of work from the past dozen years or so. I am so grateful to the curators for coming to my studio to select (and later to pick up) the work, and for the opportunity to have other people arrange, place, and hang the work. What a delight to come to the opening reception and see it for the first time, with pairings that I have never seen before.

For example, here's a painting from 2000, Thin Red Line, next to a button dress I made this year.

And on another wall in the same room, three pieces made in  different media in different years.

A second room of my work contains three-dimensional work with wood and found objects that I call Curious Lifeforms, as well as (what a treat to see these guys exhibited again!) two pieces from my Eggs and Nests series of paintings from the last century!

If you look out the window from this second room, you can see the apple tree hung with my steel Falling People. (And you can see a bit of Chris Miller's maze across the road.)

 There is lots of other good work in this show, also displayed brilliantly, including two rooms of work by Axel Stohlberg (always wonderful). On the mantelpiece are houses papered with sheets of writing in that beautiful cursive that has passed away along with those who produced it -- very moving in this historic location.

And I was so happy to see a whole roomful of Ken Leslie's circular paintings. 

In addition, there's Chris Miller's maze of flat stones, Pat Musick's bronze nests, delicate work by Gowri Savoor,  fiber works by Karen Henderson, outdoor sculptures by Thea Alvin and Gordon Auchincloss, botanical illustrations and watercolors by Susan Sawyer, steel-and-wood benches by James Teuscher, an installation by Sam Talbot-Kelly, mobiles by Lochlin Smith, constructions by Gabrielle Dietzel, sculptures by Chad Heise and Michael Alon, and plates with a cool story by Allyson Evans.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Kind Attention

Jane Davies has been very enthusiastic about my work with circles, and posted some examples on The Sketchbook Challenge. I meant to put up this link back in July, but it got away from me.

Space and Time in Disks

As I posted at the end of May, I cut up my large Circular Statements piece into four smaller pieces. And now I've decided that they will become four pieces related to space science topics.

I didn't post what the other half (the relatively intact half) looks like, so I've included a shot of it in my studio below. It's now 6' x 8'. Still substantial, but not impossible as it was before (at 8 x 12').

So what happened to the cut up bits?

Here are three of them in progress in the studio, waiting for Blackthorne Forge to make steel frames so that I can stretch the four pieces and finish the additions I envision.

The one on the right is about Dark Matter, and has extrusions of Dark Matter and overlying black disks.

This one is Wormholes, and other topics are Gas Clouds and perhaps Quantum Entanglement or Galaxies and Structures... I'm waiting until they're stretched out to make a commitment. The interesting thing that has developed is my use of beads and buttons. I never thought I'd get into stringing beads, but they seem to be the perfect thing for this project (combined with buttons, of course...).

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

$100 Art Sale at Local 64 in Montpelier

Come on over to the $100 Art Sale this Saturday at Local 64 in Montpelier! I'll be selling my Wine Foil prints and would love to see you there. Montpelier's "State Street Slam" is happening that day, as well as the farmers market, so it's a good day to head over to Montpelier.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Off the Wall at Studio Place Arts

Wow, I am SO pleased to have two pieces in the Off the Wall exhibit at SPA that opened on Friday, July 20 and runs through September 8. I'm showing work that I really wanted to get out into the world, and the exhibit itself is magnificent -- ALL three-dimensional, and in muted, natural colors -- very serene, but strong. Not a painting in sight, though there are some sculptures affixed to the walls, including illuminated ones by Riki Moss.

In the front window is an installation of my Falling People, work I made in 2002 that really has never been exhibited in a gallery setting before. Each figure hangs from the ceiling on a swivel attched to a steel line, so it can (and does) rotate gently.  I am hoping to find a group of dancers who may be interested in creating a dance piece using these figures as props. I imagine the Falling People suspended from the ceiling of a large room (or outside, from tree branches), with the dancers in silver lycra bodysuits, moving among them, turning, and striking them with mallets, like gongs. Maybe there's a gamelan accompaniment...

By the way, you can see through the window that Main Street is being dug up in front of the gallery. If you can come visit the exhibit (which I hope you can and will), you can park in the municipal parking lot on Merchants Row for free and walk over to SPA (there's a crosswalk in front of Aubuchon's).

In the back of the gallery The Disarmed are suspended from the ceiling on both sides of the back hallway. The rubric (or rule) I imposed on myself in making these figures was that they needed to have: No arms (they hang from wires attached to their shoulders), Multiple things on their torsos (armor? breastplates?), and A skirt. People really seem to be digging them, as four of the twelve have already been sold!

Night and Day Acquired by Collector

Two Button Encasements, Night and Day, have been acquired by an out-of-state collector. These pieces, from a 2002 series, are constructed in a complex fashion: They are four inches deep, and there's a layer of translucent mylar at the back that is painted on both sides with acrylic paints and a grid drawn with graphite. In the middle distance, buttons are held in a grid of fine annealed steel wire, while in the foreground, circular images are painted in acrylic on the interior surface of a plexiglass cover. Light casts circular shadows from the middle and top layers onto the far surface.

Remaining pieces in my studio from this series are Workers of the World, Gumballs, Red Moon Rising, Glass Houses, and Shrapnel.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Gander Gallery in Manchester Center

The opening at the Gander Gallery was Friday, July 6, from 5-7 PM. Adria Schozer, the gallerist, kindly put me up for Thursday and Friday night, and created fabulous refreshments for the opening. She sold two of my button dresses on the opening night, which was great. Here are some images of the space. I was particularly pleased with the wall where my loose circular pieces were interspersed with painted wood pieces by Fred Faviano, whose work I like very much:

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Still Blowing in the Wind

Yesterday I went by the Pop-Up Gallery in Winooski to put some leaves in my piece so I could photograph it for publicity. It still needs MORE leaves -- up to just below the bird -- but I'll add them on June 22, just before the reception. I hope you'll come and join us from 7-9 PM on June 22.

Exhibit at Gander Gallery

I'll have some of my work in an exhibit at Gander Gallery in Manchester Center next month. Here's an ad for the show:

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Red Dress Outside

For the last year or two I've been trying to move things out of my studio (and out of the basement at SPA, where so many floods have caused Sue Higby, SPA's executive director, to say no more things can be stored in the basement).

One of the things that has had to find a new home is my Red Dress sculpture. Last summer we set it up permanently outside at my home (installed in a concrete base), and yesterday evening I caught it with the setting sun casting the strong shadows of the falling figures that I've always loved.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Blowing in the Wind

Emiko Sawaragi Gilbert and I are collaborating on a site-specific installation entitled Blowing in the Wind at the Stoplight Gallery in Winooski, as part of an exhibit called Mutual Gaze/Call and Response, curated by Riki Moss. The exhibit will run from June 22 - August 4, 2012, with an artists talk and reception on Wednesday, July 11th 5 - 7 pm. Here it is (photographed by Jeffrey Gilbert):

The image on the left is the damaged Fukushima Daichi nuclear power plant, with Vermont Yankee on the right. I will be filling my sculpture (seen at right, with a wooden base) with green leaves for the opening reception on June 22. The leaves will slowly desiccate over the period of the exhibit.

This exhibit is part of the Winooski Pop-up Gallery District, which transforms downtown Winooski into a vibrant hub of contemporary art for six weeks in June and July. The event includes art exhibitions; music and other cultural events; activities for children; and showcases the community of Winooski--its shops, restaurants, and history. The event will kick-off with a grand opening the weekend of June 22nd and continue through August 4th.

The galleries will be open Thursday through Saturday from Noon to 6PM and Sundays from 10AM to 4PM. The Winooski Pop-up Gallery District is produced by Kasini House and the Winooski Welcome Center.

The six artists in this exhibition explore the idea of reciprocal perception: if we look deeply enough into the heart of our planet we evoke its response. What one takes from this experience - guilt, joy, separation, heartbreak, glory, a sense of this marvelous, bio-diverse Earth - is up to the viewer.

The artists in Mutual Gaze/Call and Response are Cami Davis, Janet Fredericks, Emiko Sawaragi Gilbert, Linda E. Jones, Riki Moss, and Janet Van Fleet.