Walking through the “Neighborhood as Art” exhibit on opening night several of the artists’ statements jumped out at me. The way in which their perspectives and inspirations so closely resembled my own made me feel like part of an established tradition. Several weeks later I went back to the Cummer Museum with a pencil and pad so that I could quote excerpts from them and assign proper credit to the works they accompany. A few are noted below along with observations of how I relate to the statements in my own practice:
“I have always marveled at the way older homes become more organic as they age… …They seem to grow more alive with every passing generation…”
Russ Wilson – Yellow Bungalow IV
Through animation I tried to bring the architecture of Riverside-Avondale to life in an almost literal way. It was great to see an artist in another medium identify the organic, living quality of aging structures.
“I advocate for a contemporary art world where artists in all mediums return to the primordial purpose of art, which is to make the magic that connects the seen with the unseen, to fathom the dual nature of reality and to understand the shifting balance of the physical world with forces that affect it…
…The universe is revealed in the sacredness of the small and insignificant and in the intervals, pauses and quiet moments of active doing…”
David Hansford – Winged Victory Statue
One of my films was actually included in an exhibition entitled “Unseen” at The Arc Gallery of MOSI Tampa, FL in 2010. I also strive to celebrate the small and insignificant whether it’s the weeds in my yard or the aged stonework on a building facade.
“My work takes something extremely familiar and already magnificent and through the manipulation of the point of view I develop a new creation which takes the viewer beyond the expected.”
Sean Patterson – Memorial Park Angel
I enjoy doing this with my own art and one of the greatest comments I received at the opening was that my video “looks like the way you think.” In a future post I’ll identify a few other artists throughout the world who’ve explored very similar filmmaking techniques to the ones I employ, but one example that comes to mind is the way in which effects artists tried to illustrate the way Temple Grandin’s mind works when she thinks of something like a doorway or a shoe in the HBO biopic.
“As a native of North Florida and as a Jacksonville resident for the last 47 years, I continue to be inspired by the forms and patterns found in the natural environment of Riverside-Avondale. The springtime is diverse and is the catalyst for seasonal renewal, both in spirit and new art works. The flowering trees never cease to inspire me…
…Perhaps it is true that visual patterns are imprinted on one’s being from birth onward, and this impression is manifested in any form of art expression…”
John Bunker – Springtime: Riverside @ Memorial Park
I shouldn’t be surprised that John Bunker’s inspiration so closely resembles my own since his work has been included along side mine at the MOSH as well. Since I started growing native plants out of my own passion for nature and art the spring has taken on a great deal of importance in my own life. If you’ve seen the exhibit or get a chance to catch it before it ends July 31st feel free to comment. I’d be curious to know if you recognized the same threads connecting the artwork that I have or if you saw entirely different ones based on your own interests, perspectives, or feelings toward the community.
Photo courtesy of Riverside Avondale Preservation