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HWD Sculpture Exhibition at Rosewood Arts Centre

August 31, 2015

HWD began at Rosewood Gallery as a celebration of ceramics, and has since expanded to include all three dimensional artworks.  This year’s exhibition included a range of fibers, wood, metals, paper, organic materials, clay, and so much more.

Jason Tanner Young, “Backlog”

Featuring 22 artists from Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana and Michigan, this year’s exhibition was juried by Steven Matijcio, Curator at the Contemporary Arts Center, Cincinnati.

Matijcio wrote: “There is certainly no shortage of excess amongst a privileged class where money is no object, but this is a rarefied realm that most often perpetuates the same economic models that jettison all that which does not produce profit in the most immediate, aerodynamic way. The work in HWD alternately twists, warps, folds, skews and transforms – evidencing and amplifying its quintessentially human manufacture.”

Irina Koukhanova, “Iron Cage”

Participating artists include Carol Boram-Hays, Cynthia Bornhorst-Winslow, Matthew R. Burgy, Rebecca Carpenter, Nicole Crock, Pamela L. Deaton, Mandy Goodwin, Jackie Holan, Ron Hundt, Sarah Hydell, Janet Kelman, Virginia Kistler, Irina Koukhanova, Carrie Longley, Carol McDonough, Rob Millard-Mendez, Matthew Obrebski, Elizabeth Runyon, Gary Schmitt, Chuck Sharbaugh, Aaron Smith, and Jason Tanner Young.

Rob Millard-Mendez, “Vest for a Precocious Futilitarian”

Juror Statement:

“In the accelerating era of so-called digital evolution, sculpture has never seemed more antiquated. When progress is equated with shedding physical baggage (and being) in favor of a weightless virtual existence in an amorphous, yet omnipresent cloud, what purpose is to be served by material objects that fulfill no practical function other than to be? And yet it is precisely in, and of this exile that makes work like that which we see in this year’s HWD all the more timely and necessary. Rather than succumbing to a societal pressure to streamline and minimize, these artists embrace a neo-baroque approach to making that revels in ornamentation, excess, melodrama and materiality. To do so is contrarian to the times and crucial to the psychological well-being of a populace too often corralled into thinking only about a future existence at the expense of reflection; reversing the “inefficiency” of taking time to look back over one’s shoulder and linger in the mutations of memory. There is certainly no shortage of excess amongst a privileged class where money is no object, but this is a rarefied realm that most often perpetuates the same economic models that jettison all that which does not produce profit in the most immediate, aerodynamic way. The work in HWD alternately twists, warps, folds, skews and transforms – evidencing and amplifying its quintessentially human manufacture. Aaron Smith is especially, and intriguingly iconoclastic in his acts of metamorphosis – turning tired objects like a prayer bench and player piano into a guitar and birdcage respectively. In concert with Smith’s instrumental reassignment, Jason Tanner Young conducts a more lyrical and at times macho manipulation of wood and structure – bending the history and integrity of wood into enigmatic riddles. Chuck Sharbaugh’s treatment of wood is ostensibly more reverent upon first approach, but while he maintains an ecumenical grace to his material and craft his subject matter upon the tabletop suggests a more mysterious, somewhat disorienting flight. Artists Carol Boram-Hays and Sarah Hydell further elaborate the nascent theatricality that informs much of this work and their fellow artists in HWD, moving between post-industrial mutation and ceramic puppetry to suggest an unstable identity in the midst of re-formation. As a whole, HWD assembles work that grants its viewer permission to get lost in these knots, tangles and meanderings of uncertainty. It is not about spotless problem solving or providing direction, but rather about the delight of getting lost and rediscovering what we left behind too soon.”

–Steven Matijcio

HWD is on view from August 10 – September 11 at Rosewood Gallery in Rosewood Arts Centre.  More information about this exhibition can be found at http://www.playkettering.org/gallery/

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