Congratulations to those receiving awards, and to all of the artists who are featured in this juried Exhibit:
- Robert Michael Smith, Chautauquantumandala – Best of Show
- Bryan Tedrick, Bull – Honorable Mention & People’s Choice
- Robert Holmes, Brigitte – Honorable Mention
“Bull is the first large animal I made and is unusual in that I used mostly wood. I wanted to explore an age old sculpture subject to see how I would handle it. My surprise was to find strong public interest in animals and I have done many since. The Bull is full if vitality and inner strength, qualities which make good sculpture.
There is no substitute for handmade objects; emotions, and character are embedded in the work. Art is a vehicle of expression, a means of encoding our response to the world. I hope my audience appreciates my serious folly, my love of nature and beauty, and enjoys my effort to flirt with the mystery of life.”
Driven by his love of materials and respect for the building craft, Joe strives to create works that explore the dialogue between technique, form, material and story. Influenced by artists Donald Judd and Beverly Pepper, Joe’s piece Ambo attempts to combine the aesthetic engagement of story and content with the simple physicality of architectural form.
Dancing Rings II
“I am a welding matchmaker. It appeals to me to reuse “found objects” which are discarded artifacts that have no further use of their own. My main body of work reflects my love of simplicity. These steel sculptures give new life to their parts with unity. Their joining creates new lines, shapes and negative spaces. I intend for theses sculptures to engage people and challenge personal aesthetics.
In Dancing Rings II, the vertical shape of various rings and curves is meant to express a joyful dancer.”
“I believe that the power of an image is in the curves. There is very little use for straight lines or flat planes in my work. Straight lines allow short cuts or abbreviation; they represent the arithmetic of an image. Curves, however, are where the power of an image lies. Curves are the way nature moves. Curves are where the mathematics gets complex, and math still only approximates the lines that nature produces. My goal in capturing an image is to get the relationships between all of the curving lines and curved planes into alignment. “Sole Trane” is a tribute to the late John Coltrane, whose jazz style awakened me to a new understanding of what a saxophone can do. I cannot listen to a recording of his music without getting carried away to a very pleasant place in my mind. Sometime the edges of his sound are so rough as to be abstract and ill defined, and then I step back and listen some more and it forms some wonderful images.”
What began 9 years ago as a casual hobby has become my greatest source of creative expression. Every piece of metal that goes into a sculpture has a story of its own in two ways … its original function, and how it came to be in my possession. Sometimes the parts are as interesting as the whole. Each piece I create is absolutely unique- no two are ever alike. This is because each piece of metal comes from a different car or machine, with different wear and pitting. One of the greatest rewards of doing what I do is the opportunity to meet many different people. The people I meet are as important to me as the sculptures I create. So far, it’s been an incredible journey!”
“For many years, my art has been the figurative art of humans/animals. I call these my mixed species works. They are a result of my love of the mixed species mythologies of Egypt, Greece and Asia. There is precedent for these mixed figures in so many cultures they must be part of the collective unconscious. For instance, in ancient Egypt, the deities are often represented with animal heads: Anubis, the dog, Sebek, the alligator, Sekhmet the lioness. In India there are cobras with human torsos and Ganesa with an elephant head. In western culture we have Dracula, werewolves, angels and Satan. I am aware of the influence of ancient art on my work. My mythology is not so spiritual, maybe gently satirical. I think the mixing of humans with animals redefines how we see ourselves. I like that function of art. I hope they also speak to the hubris of human superiority over other species. I like the mythology of the rabbit – a highly sexed, fast breeder, who is also seen as a trickster in many stories.”
Mark Oldland / Miriam Morris
“I recently enjoyed a collaborative experience with a friend and ceramist named Miriam Morris. She asked for a metal frame to hold a series of spheres she had made. We tossed various ideas around for such a thing and the end result struck me as whimsical and fresh – a nice departure from my usual way of working. “Convoluti” becomes the second of a series, like some odd sprout of playful tendril that’s found it’s way to sunlight and then gone off on a mobius sort of tangent.”
Robert Michaell Smith
“Alchemy is the magic, observation, process and ritual of life. My sculptures, both virtual and actual, are conversations regarding the archetypal forms that are the basic structures of nature. I build alien abstract worlds that become familiar through frequent immersion. These worlds are constructed to open exploration to the deepest regions of the human psyche for development within the landscape of the imagination.
“Artemisa” is intended as fertile feminine icon for the Digital Age, like a Venus of Willendorf for the Electronic Revolution. According to Greek mythology Artemisa was the daughter of Zeus and Leto and the twin sister of Apollo. She was the Hellenic goddess of Nature, the hunt and fertility. As the Lady of Ephesus she was depicted as a mother goddess with multiple breasts.”
Robert Michaell Smith
“Chautauquantumandala is a fusion of traditional Chinese architectural roof decoration with the lotus mandala of Southern India. This sculpture is intended as a quintessential philosopher stone that depicts Order and Chaos as a holistic paradigm of balance in the Universe. The title is a fusion of Chautauqua, the location of the artist residency where I created this design, Quantum as a reference to the basic structure of the Universe, and Mandala as a sacred diagram of the universe for contemplation.”
“The contours of the landscape, especially forms shaped by weathering, have been of interest to me for a long time. Wind and water carve then rearrange rock and sand in what I refer to as the “Evolution of the landscape.” In my travels I’ve seen similar patterns and images between my feet at the beach, in the snow under the ski lift and out the window of an airplane. There is dynamic random symmetry constantly changing our environment, whether hourly or over a million years, and I am driven to present it in my studio work to contrast our modern experience.
The sculpture is in reference to water column inches, the units used in measuring rainfall. The four translucent sides should interact, dramatically changing with angle of view and time of day.”
“Trajectory is a sculpture comprised mainly of recycled wagon wheel rims, angle iron and a lathe center. The rust patina is in direct contrast to the green colors found in nature. “Trajectory”” started like any other sculpture, using available material on hand. My creative process involves working on several sculptures at once. Elements of form and composition are added and subtracted until balance is achieved. The title “Trajectory” came to me after the sculpture was completed. The composition reminded me of a rocket’s escape velocity from earth, following a trajectory as do all moving objects.”
“The Alchemist’s Dilemma is a comment on the process of creativity. For artist sculpture is not only the transmutation of material per se that enriches his life but the subtle transmutation of the creator’s mind. No matter how powerful the hands are there is another effect never far away floating within the ether. He is in transit though his vehicle is a stationary object in the quotidian realm.”
“My work is my statement. I don’t believe that words go very far in describing sculpture. I would rather let people see my work itself and interact with it in their own way.”
“Movies are my drug of choice; I sometimes see three in a week. Living in Berkeley they are often called “Film”, in London, “Cinema”. They are still “Movies” to me. They do the same things to me that other drugs do, they take me to another place. Often, for a short period of time, they let me be another person. I’m much more brave, much more adventurous, willing to take scary risks. Not only that, I “GET THE GIRL” and she is beautiful. Sometimes I’m smart, I see that something bad is about to happen, and yet I continue forward. I’ve loved this drug since I was seven and allowed to go alone to Saturday matinees. Two movies, two cartoons, a serial adventure and the news, all for a quarter. This drug is much cheaper and much more effective than other drugs I’ve used. Not only that, it comes with popcorn. I’ve made this sculpture, “Big Movie” to honor this drug and the pleasure it has given me.”
She Won’t Say
Beth Hartmann’s sculpture focuses on the body and the environment: limitations, fragility, and responses to internal or external influences. Before making art she was a nurse, and often references those experiences in her themes. Using her own techniques and alternative translucent or reflective materials, she constructs objects and installations which provoke.
“I am probably best known for my whimsical sculptures, I love making fun of the human race. But throughout my career I have also had a great affinity to explore the spiritual energies throughout the world. The Shaman is a very powerful and moving sculpture that moves from good to evil as it is viewed. Mystics throughout the world use powers from both plateaus to accomplish their medicine and spells. I believe I have caught this spirit in the Shaman sculpture.
The piece is completely made from recycled metals found from Sacramento to San Francisco, welded together to create the image.”
“This piece is a prototype of a variation in a series I call “Pinnacles.” It’s an assemblage of broken redwood 4 x 6 ends from a salvage logging job in 1987. At the time, it occurred to me that the trimmed scrap ends could be put to a higher use than firewood, but I didn’t follow through on the idea until 20 years later.
It suggests the peak of a volcanic plug or the top of a skyscraper or temple. I attempted to integrate the broken and milled surfaces into a symmetrical unit. The piece is sealed with metallic paint which enhances the play of light and shadow throughout the day.”
“Recycled materials call out to me for what they could be the next time around. Steel is one of my favorites for its strength, color, texture and willingness to reincarnate. This very simple piece has energy and humor. It is a very honest expression of steel in motion. 85% of this sculpture is recycled material.”