Contemporary Wood Art: Collectors' Selections - February 5 - March 20, 2010
This exhibition highlights 87 works from the museum collection of the Wood Turning Center, curated by four preeminent mid-career art collectors.
Mr. Stephen Keeble and Ms. Karen Depew (Chevy Chase, MD) and Dr. Jeffrey Bernstein and Dr. Judith Chernoff (Laurel, MD) curated the exhibition along three focused areas that they felt were consistent with their own appreciation and collecting of wood art. The themes of the exhibition are: Wood, Decoration, and Design. The range of objects reflects the evolution of each couple's collaborative collecting - from unadorned functional forms to decorated surfaces to complex sculptural work.
The "Wood" section features works that they found indicative of their earliest collecting, highlighting the tactile and natural beauty of the medium. This group of work showcases the collectors' interest in the beauty of various woods shaped by artists utilizing lathes and sharp tools into simple classic forms.
"Decoration" includes items from the Collection that reflected the second phase of their collecting, where their eye and growing knowledge broadened into appreciating varied processes that transformed the work beyond the simplicity of natural coloring and classic shapes. In this phase they felt collectors begin educating themselves and developing relationships with the artists they meet, and their readings/discussions about inspiration, design and finish help them develop an appreciation for more complex treatments and approaches to the medium.
"Design" focuses on pieces where the artist has made complex choices about material, decoration and form. As exposure to work in artists' studios, galleries, craft exhibits and museums expands, collectors grow to appreciate the intertwining of artists' concepts, their selections of materials and the resulting embodiment of intellectual ideas into free forms. Through this third grouping from the Wood Turning Center's Museum
Collection, the choices reflect more and more about their particular individual interests and aesthetics as collectors.
We hope you will enjoy the show in two ways, to appreciate the breadth of our museum collection but also to think about what these 4 collectors have chosen to show you that reflects their journey and how their passions for collecting wood art warmed them and drove them - first to tiptoe into basics, then to step up to varied shapes and finishes, and finally to jump fully-dressed into appreciation of contemporary sculpture that they probably bypassed as beginners.