I was invited to be part of an exhibit called The New Horizons, which opened in June, 2019, at the Gallery in the Park in Richmond, Washington. This invitation occurred two years before the exhibit opening, with the instructions that artists were to make a piece that was totally different than their signature work. The justification for this caveat was to allow artists to produce something unexpected, given that most artists are stuck in a line of signature work that collectors and galleries are used to.
My signature work involves small pieces - usually under 10 inches in any dimension. I gave this a lot of thought - probably the entire first year, off and on. I finally came up with an idea to do a wall installation. Instead of working at a small size, I would go BIG! I sketched a design, and began making individual pieces for this installation about a year ahead of my deadline. I thought of making imaginary propagules for plants that could be arranged in a dynamic sculpture. I wanted 100 individual elements, but ended up with 73.
Figuring out how to mount these turned and carved elements was the next challenge. I finally had to make a sketch for individual box modules that I thought might work. I sent the sketch to Clay Foster, who made them with extreme precision so that I could consistently mount the modules on a wall. Each module had two keyhole slots, and could hold six to nine elements, already strung and positioned, which made the installation by the galleries pretty straightforward.
The exhibit opening was at a time that I could attend, so off I went with my husband to be part of the festivities. When I walked into the gallery, I was gobsmacked by how The Time Travelers was installed. It took up its own wall, and the docents I talked to said that it made a huge impression on visitors who came to the exhibit. After the show in Richmond, the exhibit traveled to The Gallery of Wood Art in St. Paul, MN, where it now resides as part of the permanent collection.
UA Creative Studios did an artist feature video about my project. It’s only about three minutes long, and was nicely done. They were able to condense several hours of video from visits to my shop and lab to tell a concise story about this installation. I’ll give a huge shout out to them for the work they did on the video. If you are ever in need of professional production work - check them out. Here’s a link to their website: UA Creative Studios.
Here’s a gallery with miscellaneous photos from the making, installation, and gallery opening for The Time Travelers. The photos in black and white were made by Stephen A. Wolfe.