Opening Reception: Sunday, May 12, 6 - 9 pm
The Gallery is pleased to showcase the work of local sculptor Eileen Gagarin. Eileen uses sculpture to tell short stories, often satirical in nature. Inspired by travel, or just sitting on bench and eavesdropping, she enjoys the ridiculous and creates exaggerated, intense, interpretations of reality. An artist and educator for many years, Eileen has a studio in Newton. This is her first solo show in the Boston area.
Visit eileengagarin.com to see more of her work.
There’s a great video of a male cuttle fish simultaneously courting a female and fighting off a male rival. The creature is split perfectly in half, one side red, the color of aggression and the other white, with sweet amour. There are many animals that can drastically alter their physical appearance to show their true emotions. Humans are more subtle. We glow when we are in love, and crumble when in sorrow, but not nearly as much on the outside as on the inside. Through art I can make a reality that is easier to understand and looks like it feels. I can give someone with a headache a bulbous cranium or highlight instability by creating a creature with absurdly small feet. My sculptures tell ridiculous, exaggerated, tense stories, doing a far better job of displaying my thoughts than words ever could. Most pieces start from a small but very clear idea in my head, a tilt, a finger position, the color of a glaze. I build from there.
Making art helps me to better understand my surroundings. Recently, I have begun exploring words themselves. They have always been a bit of a mysterious foe of mine as I have often found myself incapable of using them in a fulfilling way. At first I blamed it on the words, but others do wondrous things with them, so now I think it’s more about me. I wanted letters to seep in, so I replaced human form with text as a main form of expression.
Thoughts take form through words, and letters organize words. To examine words in general was too tall of a task so I just picked one. I chose big, the meaning and potency of the word loses intensity in popular culture. Big sale, big deal, and big shot. Conversely, terms like big bang, big fish, big foot preserve the word’s magic and mystery. Its familiarity and constant use both draws a person in and also repels him or her.
My aim is to pause and show how wide a range one common word can have. These pieces look at one word– big–and utilize the form, rather than the sound, to communicate meaning. Each piece uses “big” as a catalyst, one piece spurs from the idea of decadence, a second highlights scale change, a third as an endless trail to follow, and so on. I aim to spotlight the complexity of words and the potential of miscommunication as well as to celebrated the simple beauty in the visual form of an alphabet that is more than 2,000 years old.
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