into/out of nature
Friday was a day of gorgeous fall leaves and art for my friend Patricia, her daughter Maddie and I as we traveled west to the Wisonsin-Minnesota border to enjoy both indoor and outdoor sculpture, and a visit to printmaker Christine Herman's studio.
Sculptor and good friend Christina Yocca
is pictured here at the reception of the group show, Into/Out of Nature
, at the Phipps Center for the Arts in Hudson, WI. There's also a shot below of her outdoor sculpture, located in nearby Willow River State Park. The idea behind the show at The Phipps Center was that five sculptors would exhibit both indoor and outdoor work--the ones outside were site specific for the state park, and interacted in some way with the environment...the interior sculptures represented reflection or response to outdoor experience. Chris's outdoor piece, Whispering Wall, containes a trumpet flower shape made of fibers, clay and wax in a wall-like matrix of branches. Placing an ear to the trumpet shape focuses the viewer's attention on the sounds of the surrounding meadow and trees. (Maddie preferred to look instead.) Coming from one direction along the path, the sculpture blends into its setting--Patricia and I missed it the first time through. After turning around to search better, we spotted it right away in the view shown below.
The other highlight of our day was a visit to abstract monotype artist Christine Herman
in her studio and home across the St. Croix River in Stillwater, MN. Christine contacted me a few weeks ago after seeing my article in the Daniel Smith
art materials catalogue and realizing not only our proximity in location, but the fact that we shared certain approaches in our work. Because I started out in college as a printmaker, and have made my share of monotypes in the past, there are clear connections in our images and processes. I still use some printmaking approaches in my work--and Christine's approach to monotype is quite painterly. This intersection of media provided an immediate connection. Her layered abstractions are subtle while maintaining strong contrasts in color and texture. It was delightful to meet her and her husband, Robert, and to spend some time in her studio.