Thursday, 1 June 2017

Suspended Objects at Uncommon Common Art

My work Suspended Objects was selected for Uncommom Common Art, an annual site responsive event that has been running for the past 10 years. Uncommon Common Art (UCA) brings visual art out of institutions and into rural communities of Kings County, Nova Scotia between June 1 to October 31, highlighting the exceptional location of the Minas Basin Valley. 

Uncommon Common Art was initiated by Terry Drahos, originally from Chicago who is actively promoting art in the Nova Scotian community by encouraging artists to exhibit and install work in the public arena.

This year the event is curated by Angela Henderson, interdisciplinary Canadian artist and educator. The theme for 2017 was:

"Drawing on the rich geological, historical, and the possible futures of Kings County, Uncommon Common Art 2017 seeks public art installations that frame this landscape through concepts of the terrestrial and the subterranean.

The vast tidal range of the Minas Basin situates the exhibition on the threshold of the shore where the landscape, in a constant state of flux, is continuously reshaped. Amidst subterranean layers of human habitation and a broad historical context, a range of locations await the artists’ response. Within the interconnected threads of these communities, Uncommon Common Art 2017 raises questions of how site-specific public art can respond/reveal a multiplicity of perspectives within the spaces we inhabit. Can art in public space unearth histories that are hidden or contested? What are the immediate and long term effects on public space where art is situated? Does the artwork continue to resonate once it is removed?"

20 art works have been selected and are installed throughout the Kings County region and a guidebook has been produced that  leads residents and visitors to explore the art installations in our communities, nature trails, and country lanes. For added fun, geocaches have been included hidden near some of the art sites. 

Suspended Objects (Stop 15) is located in Minors Marsh in the town of Kentville. A continuation of the exploration of my thesis exhibition, the objects when suspended from the bridge the objects become weightless and distorted; dancing within time and space upon the reflection in the water below. In the reflection we have no terms of reference and our understanding of these objects becomes distorted. This idea refers to memory, and how things fade over time and something a seemingly solid as a stone will change over time. 

The river below is effected by the Bay of Fundy tides, which has some of the highest tides in the world and can reach a peak of around 16 meters high. Some of the suspended objects are made from unfired clay, whilst others are fired and more permanent. I am interested to see how the installation will weather for the duration of the event, which runs until the end of October 2017. 

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