Monday, September 16, 2013

DIMENSIONS Sculpture Exhibition

So we had the sculpture exhibition and it was a success! The opening was well-attended on Thursday evening with music provided by a professional harp player. These exhibitions are key to artists success. We have the opportunity to show new work and gain feedback on the work we are doing. It is great to converse with people and discuss our work. I had many people interested in this series of sculptures as well as the techniques I use and especially the French Polish I apply to the sculptures. Over the course of four days I had the opportunity to meet with many interested people, especially the lovers of wood!

My work is very contemporary in style. This series of sculptures has been described as being both conceptual and spiritual in style. The concept is a flame and my rendering immediately brings this vision to mind. The spiritual side can be viewed in the organic form reaching up and demonstrating how a flame tends to point in a celestial direction. The power of the flame is also instilled in each of the sculptural pieces. 

I enjoy creating these pieces and will hopefully have some variations in this theme over the next year. The process of creating these sculptural objects from raw wood to this finished state is still beholding to me. Wood has so many possibilities and is such a beautiful, malleable medium.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Upcoming sculpture exhibition...

This summer is turning out to be a nice one after all. We had more rain than usual in the early part of the summer. In typical August fashion, rainfall is low and the days are warm, dry and sunny. Evenings are also cool. I've done quite a bit of recreational activities lately. Camping, cycling, touring wineries, etc. I feel that time off from the studio tends to recharge me and I come back enlightened after seeing so much I had not seen before. I also have the opportunity to talk to people and see some art from other locations.

In the past, I used to camp quite a bit. Since moving outside the city on a few acres, the camping was dropped. This summer is the first in many years that I have begun camping again. My wife and I decided on a whim to go camping and we loved every minute of it. Even getting the gear together was kind of fun.. to see if we could accomplish this in a little over an hour. 

The upcoming sculpture exhibition "Dimensions" is a four day event with a well-attended opening night.One of the the two sculptures in the previous post is destined for this sculpture exhibition which is coming up in three weeks or so. As well, I will have two other sculptures for a total of three sculptures. Both of the new sculptures are having finish applied at the moment. "Dimensions" is the annual sculpture exhibition of the local sculptors group I belong to and we tend to publicize it well. It is held at a venue with good lighting and in a great central location. I truly enjoy these exhibitions.. they provide me the opportunity to talk about my work with interested patrons. The sculpture exhibition card is at the left. I hope to post photos of the completed sculptures very soon.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Sculptures in progress...

Following the same style as my most recent sculptures, I decided to create two large sculptures with a similar organic, curvilinear shape. One of these sculptures is intended for an annual sculpture exhibition.. the second is essentially speculative work. The sculptures are completely veneered with figured maple and this was somewhat of a challenge due to the curved surfaces involved. Much of my previous work was carved from solid blocks of wood except for some smaller sculptures. Due to the large dimensions of these new sculptures ( over 3 feet high), a solid block of figured maple was almost impossible to come by. After some deliberation, the choice was made to instead veneer a core with sheets of figured maple veneers.

The first batch of veneers I sliced, although highly figured, did not lend themselves well to the shape of the sculptures. I wanted a somewhat seamless look, that is veneer graphics which are continuous from side to side. I instead book-matched the first batch of veneers and will use them for cabinet doors. They will be fantastic for this application! I then prepared a new set of veneers. These veneers were sliced and prepared to the correct thickness, then methodically applied to the core and carefully scraped to give the sculpture surfaces an appearance of a continuous sheet of wood.  The figure is a very subtle curl which is more prominent in areas, adding to the character. I infuse the wood with color to enhance this curl, very similar to my most recent sculptures.

In the photo, the two sculptures are temporarily raised so I can continue to smooth the surfaces. The base and stand-offs are only temporary. Solid blocks of dark rosewood will serve as the individual bases, although I haven't sourced these yet. I'll be posting another update soon.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

A bountiful evening!

I attended the NFAL Members Juried Awards last evening and was pleasantly surprised to find out I won 2 awards. Definitely my best Monday night in a while :) My entry was a sculptural piece "Eternal Flame". The Awards ceremony is professionally done and very well attended. Every so often artists receive recognition for their work. I guess it was my turn last evening. I was sitting in the crowd and my name was called out for the first award.  I was basking in the euphoria of receiving this and heard my name called again.... this time for the second award and accompanying cup. I have to this does not occur very often. Needless to say, I was flush with joy and I don't think I will ever forget this evening :) These Awards are greatly appreciated to motivate and encourage us to move forward. NFAL ( Nepean Fine Arts League) is a great group of artists and the artwork at the exhibition is outstanding! Exhibition runs from May 24- June 26, 2013 at the Atrium Gallery & Centrepointe Theatre  Ottawa, Ont.  Please drop in if you're in the area.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Video interview at Go Figure! exhibition

I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Liana Voia at the opening of my recent solo exhibition. The goal of this exhibition was to introduce the public to wood as an art form in its simplicity. I enhance the natural beauty of the woods I use. We walked through the exhibition and I spoke a little about each of the pieces in the body of work. Also talked about the inspiration and subtleties of each of the art pieces. This was an exciting evening and a great many people attended encouraging me to move forward with my unique wood art. 

I recall walking in to the gallery and never had the opportunity to even step outside for the many questions I had about my work. This was over a 2 hour period.  The exhibition duration was over a 1 month period and I received many positive comments about the work. The most common comment in my visitor book was that the viewer had never realized wood could be portrayed as a beautiful art form and how wood is under-appreciated. The interview can be seen here: 

To the left is one of my more recent pieces. This piece "Spring Bulrush"  evokes a spring image incorporating light, vibrant colours.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Art exhibition... Go Figure!

So I've been busy preparing work for my upcoming solo art exhibition. This is a city art exhibition and proposals from different visual artists were juried and a few selected from these entries. The exhibition revolves around a pre-defined theme of which I chose. This theme focuses on the figure of wood. Combining the theme and a commonly used cliche, I came up with the clever Go Figure! title for the exhibition. At least I think it's clever :) The work consists of over 25 pieces of wood art, the majority of which are framed. The individual art pieces each portray an image or vision of mine.. something I see in the graphics of the wood. I use color to highlight different parts of the wood figure and graphics. So each art piece is unique and colored differently. The colors are mine to choose and I worked with a palette of colors which I mixed and created. I have my favorite colors which I tend to use more than others.

The exhibition begins this coming Friday March 22, 2013. Set up is this Thursday and I literally have 4 hours to set it all up. I will have help to do this. I just hope transporting all this work to the gallery works out and nothing is scratched or damaged. It will a relief once the art work is hanging and I'm satisfied with the way it looks. Otherwise, I'm excited about the exhibition and how it will bring attention to the innate beauty off wood. How wood itself can be used as a form of art.

The wood I use is highly figured and in the form of panels which I have created and framed for the most part. A few of the art pieces have been framed professionally and I will make this an option for a client to have this done if they so choose. These exhibitions run for a little over a month and as well there is an official opening party. The exhibition opening party occurs on Tuesday March 26 from 6-8PM. If you're in the area, drop in to both the party or sometime during this month long exhibition. Wish me luck :)

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Latest news...

As winter slowly draws to a close, the days are getting longer, the sun more intense, and some new birds are appearing at the feeders. I managed to get some skiing and skating in over the winter. Lately I've been busy creating work for a solo exhibition coming up in late March. I had not realized how many pieces of art I would need. So this is what I've been doing lately,...creating work for this exhibition and a couple of other smaller local group exhibitions. The upcoming solo exhibition will feature my wall art while the smaller local exhibitions feature my sculptural work. The photo here was snapped at an exhibition opening in the past two weeks. This particular sculpture "Eternal Flame" is the largest I have created so far and it provided its share of challenges. 

A critical component of my recent art work is the finishing. I use a modified French Polish process which I developed. It is essentially French Polishing with a little time-saving thrown in. French Polishing is probably the most difficult and time consuming finishing technique to master, but the results are well worth it. The feedback I have been receiving is great and encourages me to keep going.

Along with this work I have been designing a couple of new pieces of furniture. The new designs have presented some technical challenges but this is what I like... to be challenged. I'll talk about this in an upcoming blog post. I also have a new logo design for the furniture design aspect of what I do in my studio. Like anything else, I was tired of the earlier logo and it needed updating anyway. Preliminary feedback is good.