On Saturday I had the pleasure of driving my aunt and mom around to see some of the artists as part of the Elephant’s Eye Artist Studio Tour in Bucks County. For those of you in the area, it is happening again this coming weekend.

Since I was working at the Art Star Craft Bazaar in the city later in the day, we had to keep local rather than venturing to all of the studios on the tour.  As it turned out, I could have spent all afternoon at John McDevitt’s studio given the time!

Arriving at John’s was very experiential. As I pulled in and saw the sculptures placed around front, I had a feeling this visit was going to be more than I anticipated.

Walking up to the studio entrance a low piece peeked at me from beneath a tree. I couldn’t say why, but I just felt compelled to kneel and stare at it for a while. I appreciated that John was open to talking about it’s origins and learned about how he had been reflecting on the nature of war at it’s conception. I found it interesting that he chose the dimensions of an ancient helmet as the basis for the form which then took on a life of it’s own. The curves and undulations felt fluid and natural and I liked how it was nestled in the leaves of a nearby tree.

As I wandered around to property some of the works drew me in, others sort of repelled me. Stoic, unapproachable in a way. It comes as no surprise to me that the rounder forms sucked me in. But one in particular stopped me in my tracks. No exaggeration. I stopped and it was like I had seen it before. I ‘knew’ it.  This piece, entitled Turning Point, is still living with me to this day on several levels.

On first approach, my reaction was visceral. The spiral, so often in my work, the voluptuous form. The mass and movement. Gasp. It also somehow had the soft, sensuality like the curve of a woman’s back. I love the juxtaposition of the curve against the hardness of the materials. To make steel do that?? Of course I had to look closely at the welds, the making of edges, where one plan melts into another. Next visceral feeling- damn, I want to do that!

Returning home, I am reminded to revisit my earlier work in metal and to remember what it was that I enjoyed so much in making them. I miss that swirl, manipulating the forms and materials, the feeling of it in my hands. It seems that whether I am resting in shavasana, on the chiropractor’s table or just waking up from a dream, that metal is coming back into my life (Thank God). I am dreaming of pendants of porcelain and silver. I imagine capturing the movement of a water ripple as it falls into a pool in porcelain and steel. I am contemplating collaboration in mediums and ideas. It’s so very exciting to imagine this challenging and yet powerful material in my creative life again. Thanks John.

Advertisements