As society emerges from the restrictions and isolation of the pandemic, the Bristol Art Museum opens to the public with an exhibit of sculptures from six different artists, Sense of Place, on view from Friday, May 14 to Sunday, July 18. The Museum, located at 10 Wardwell Street in Bristol, is open Thursdays to Sundays from 1 to 4 p.m.
Sense of Place is an exhibit offering the Museum visitor an opportunity to connect both physically and conceptually with art. Standing before each sculptors’ tangible presence creates a relational exchange between artwork and viewer, and fosters an implied interpersonal connection, dissolving physical boundaries. Visitors will be psychologically and physically engaged with the sculptures while being encouraged to transcend the palpable area and experience an imagined place.
“The pandemic has presented us with the opportunity to organize an exhibit recognizing that location, or place, is a reminder of community,” said Mary Dondero, Curator. “As we slowly emerge from isolation and return to our community, sculpture provides a sense of space and location. Sculpture also provides a sense of solidity; it is grounded, whether on a pedestal or mounted on a wall. Sense of Place is indirectly about the Museum itself - a place for visitors to see new contemporary art.”
Sense of Place is made possible thanks to generous donations from Joseph & Elizabeth Brito, Paul & Gail Burmeister, Rita & Bob Campanella, Michael Rossi & April Carleton, David Ritter, Carol FitzSimonds, Steve & Kathy Kloeblen, Dennis McCool & Jacqueline Savoie, Mary & Michael Schwartz, Michael Somers and Patricia & Clifford Woods. Picture Adria Arch Arch is a Boston-based sculptor, a member of the Boston Sculptors Gallery. BAM has her acrylic on PVC "Interference #1" on view.
“I create painted biomorphic sculptural works and installations,” explains Arch. “Suspended from architectural elements or nature, this work combines the formal concerns of painting and sculpture. The individual pieces hang in relationships, creating installations that require the viewer to enter the defined space and discover new viewpoints. My work is drawn from nature, dance, theater sets, and playgrounds.”
Arch has had solo exhibitions at Danforth Art in Framingham, MA, the Art Complex Museum in Duxbury, MA, and the Hunt Gallery at Mary Baldwin College in Virginia. She has completed site-specific murals at Lesley University's Porter Square building in Cambridge, MA, Stonehill College, and Danforth Art. Arch has been awarded residencies at Vermont Studio Center, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Sanskriti Foundation in Delhi, and in Auvillar, France. Her work is included in many private and public collections including the DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum, Fidelity Corporation, and the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston and shown at the Fitchburg Museum of Art, the Cahoon Museum of American Art, the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center, and the Danforth Museum in Framingham, MA. Picture Deborah Baldizer Baldizer is a figurative sculptor whose work has been shown nationally over the past 20 years. BAM is displaying six of Baldizer works for the Sense of Place exhibit: "Cossack Immigrant," shown here, is created of ceramic and paint. Her work can be found in several private collections and was featured in the book, CAST: Art and Objects Made Using Humanity’s Most Transformational Process by Jen Townsend and Renee Zettle-Sterling.
“These clay portraits were inspired by black and white photos taken of immigrants at Ellis Island in the early 1900s,” shares Baldizer “The facial expressions and clothing give us hints as to what the journey entailed. They describe both the strain and the hope, the fear and the longing. Their eyes reveal the search for a place. A place to call home. A place to build a life. A place to begin.”
Baldizer received a Master of Fine Arts in Sculpture from the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth and a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of New Hampshire and serves as an Assistant Professor of Art at Lasell University in Newton, MA. Picture Zoe Friend Friend is a Boston-based sculptor and BAM has included two mixed media assemblages to the exhibit: "Vestige," consisting of plastic disposables, Swarovski crystals, chandelier crystals, LEDs, and taxidermy forms and "War," an assemblage of Swarovski crystals and various plastics.
“My work is best described as maximalist monochrome baroque-inspired assemblage,” shared Friend. “I work in a language of disposable bio-plastic objects executed in the style of traditional Victorian and Baroque natural history dioramas. My focus is on the consumer sublime and where our relationship with nature intersects with societal detritus.”
Friend earned a Master of Fine Arts from Lesley Art & Design; attended Harvard’s Ceramics program; apprenticed to ceramics artist Allison Newsome; and earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Illustration from the PRATT Institute of Design. She has exhibited her work at several exhibitions including The Expansive Baroque (solo show) Suffolk University Gallery, Boston MA, 2021; ROX/SE Exhibition, Piano Craft Gallery, Boston, MA, September 2020; Emerson Contemporary, Emerson College, Boston MA, April-May 2020; Something You Love is Almost Gone, 2018 Vandernoot Gallery, Cambridge MA; Kennard Park Sculpture Trail 2016, Newton, MA; Sculpture Fest, 2015-Present Kings Farm Sculpture Park, Woodstock VT (site specific installation); and Art Encounters Preservation, 2012 Wentworth-Coolidge Mansion, Portsmouth NH (site specific installation). Picture Kate Park Park was born in South Korea, and is now a New York City-based artist. BAM is displaying two of her fiber sculptures and a series of photographs documenting her "Weekend Sweater Project. Shown here is her "Like the Moon Pulls the Tide," comprised of wool, mohair and cotton.
“I weave, knit and digitally program textiles to express the concepts that I constantly learn and realize,” explains Park. “By manipulating each row of yarn by hand or by machine, I eventually create textile pieces that stand as poetic sculptures. Weaving every row acts like writing each line of poetry to me. I am interested in translating abstract ideas into visual reality of fiber art. The conceptual thread that runs through my work is the dynamic interaction between two coexisting identities. I battle with the coexistence of two things but am constantly empowered by their interaction. The two identities are Korean and American, me and the divine, and people and the environment. Using the cultural, spiritual and environmental interaction that I have, I work to represent the power of coexistence in a quirky and rhythmic way.”
Park moved to the United States when she was in high school and received a Bachelor in Fine Arts in Textiles from the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD). She originally pursued studies in interior design however, she discovered her love for textiles and fiber art in her first year at RISD. Park is currently working as a textile designer in New York City. She hoards yarns in a small New York City apartment that also serves as space to weave on her floor loom during weekends. Picture John Udvardy Udvardy is a Rhode Island based artist. BAM has included tow of his sculptures for Sense of Place: "Dardanus", assorted wood, copper, gray and pink granite and "Sojourner", assorted wood, patinated copper and creosote. Shown here is "Sojourner."
“I get great pleasure and inspiration by using and reshaping objects and materials that in many cases predate my existence on this planet,” explains Udvardy. “The age-worn patinas and unknown histories and origins of these objects and forms hopefully create a dialogue with each other to bring a poetic mystery that helps to energize my work and vision.”
Throughout an impressive career spanning 60 years, Udvardy has been featured in 40, one-person shows and exhibited in more than 200 group shows in museums and galleries throughout the United States. He taught at the Cleveland Institute of Art, Yale University, Brown University, Dartmouth College and retired as a Distinguished Professor Emeritus of the Rhode Island School of Design after teaching there for 34 years. Picture Kathleen Volp Among the works Kathleen Volp has on view, "Heap of…" is part of a body of work that is created from plastic horses, acrylic mediums, powdered graphite, wax. Volp deliberately uses materials that are familiar and comfortable to the viewer, most often mass-produced, thrift store finds and throwaways. When deconstructed and combined, these cast-offs become sculptures that reflect her deep social, political, and cultural concerns. Volp works do not demand reverence and awe; they resist classicism forcing the viewer into confronting the ironies and follies of the past as it converges with the present.
“Objects are the physical products of our collective psyche— they often speak more loudly and truthfully than history books,” Volp shared.
Volp studied at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design and earned a Bachelor of Art in Behavioral Sciences from SUNY in New York City. She has exhibited nationally and her work is featured in the New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain, CT and the Minneapolis Institute of Art.