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A Musée Sentimental

sentimental brocure

A Musée Sentimental August 2005
Hope for the Wood Gallery and Vermont College

Within the Wood Gallery at Vermont College I constructed A Musée Sentimental, using as my source elements found in the historic Wood Collection. Thomas Waterman Wood (1823-1903) was a self-taught, itinerant portrait painter and Sentimentalist, who also made careful reproductions of "educational and uplifting paintings" for his own and others' edification. Having no heirs, Wood gave his collection of work to his hometown Montpelier Vermont, for the establishment of The Wood Art Gallery.

I was interested in this project to consider what an artist collects and how the construction of art and identity changes over time. The Wood Gallery is primarily based on what was left behind: what remained of the artist’s work after “important” work was sold. It also contains copies of Wood’s favourite pieces and reproductions of well known work of others for the edification of citizens in his hometown. My choices for the installation were also based on what was available in the vault when I installed the exhibition and a desire to consider the idea of sentimentality in many ways. I was also interested in the idea of reproduction. Wood earned a living as a reproductionist and a printmaker and he made many reproductions of his own visage throughout his life, often in poses reproduced from Rembrandt.

A Musée Sentimental also reproduces a title used by artist Daniel Spoerri for installations of collections of objects belonging to a particular community. He himself refers in the title to another artist’s personal museum in Spain. Were Wood’s paintings important to his community during his lifetime? Are they now? How does this geographically isolated personal collection reflect aspects of the current Vermont College community? What is important? What is remembered? Is all art just a particular language used to describe currently popular imagery and ideas? I collected favourite quotes from the visual culture reading of fellow students and juxtaposed these randomly with images from the Wood collection and a collection of floral biscuit tins presented in Port Hope as Content: Hope. These souvenir cards became a new collection of sentimental greetings that gallery visitors chose from and purchased for themselves. Who is sentimental? Sentimental for what-- the language? --the imagery? --the memory of an experience?

Wood Gallery Installation
nw
Northwest corner of gallery
nw
Northwest corner of gallery

card boutique
Sentimental card boutique

 


T.W. Wood Self-Portrait after Rembrandt with T.W. Wood Fetish vitrine

vault
Vault

 

east
East side of gallery
boutique
Sentimental boutique
Thomas Waterman Wood
child and dog
Child and dog
spaniels
Landsdowne's Spaniels by T.W. Wood
rembrandt
Rembrandt
world gone awry
"The World Has Gone Awry"
(T.W. Wood etching)

familiar faces
Leaf found in Familiar Faces of Montpelier
(T.W. Wood Sketchbook)


self portrait
Self-portrait




Sentimental Favourites

These images provide a souvenir counterpoint for the Content Hope Window Project and the installation Sentimental Favourites at the Wood Gallery. The Images are available along with images from the Wood Gallery collection as Sentimental Favourite Greeting Cards. The cards quote collected visual culture texts as sentimental greetings.

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Spring Science

ss01 ss03 ss05 ss07 ss09
ss02 ss04 ss06 ss08 ss10

Spring Science examines common early blooming bushes in the hopeful colours and soft focused frames of old science texts.

Media: litho
Size: 15" X 15"
Paper: Somerset White
Price: $500 each.

 

Identification
These small images are part of an ongoing project begun in 1996. I am restless, I move around, I make things, I collect. They are pocket work: small compositions begun with things found or made when I find myself away from my studio. Imagery ranges from Newfoundland berries, to Mexican cactus thorns and sea urchins, to plant morphology, Ontario bees and china shards. The three inch substrates are also found--thin veneer from a model shop in Chicago, fragments of copper plates and pieces of hand printed papers. Individually each image is a complete composition, but together in small or larger groups they form a shifting narrative of personal identification.

3”X 3” $30 each.

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Mexico 1
Mexico 2
Ontario 1
Ontario 2
Ontario 3
Morphology 1
Morphology 2
 

Surrendered Truths
Horse Chestnut Exo alianthus leaf curl leaf group lily
Sea fan Kapok Urchin limpet Host Driftwood
Canada Burnet Curzon Village Vertebra Tuckamore Lichen Fern acacia morning glory
banana blossom branch fungi coral white leaf alamamde banana
wing pod wig white blossom winged thorn  
Surrendered Truths (acrylic on linen; 12" X 12"; 1997-ongoing) This work finds its source in personal collections and is influenced by studies at The British Museum, Museum of Natural History in 1997. What is presented are not the perfect holotypes. Time has passed. What may be discovered in overlooked, damaged, or forgotten detritus? What truths remain?
 

Unrestored Artifacts
fecund large leaf poplar poplar red curl wing
 
Wedgewood
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Related monoprints
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big orange glow after bee rose china sunflower caught *
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Killarney Pearls  2005
kp1 kp2 kp3
ed. 10 suite 3 litho and pochoir 12”X 12” $300
This small suite of images suggests a memento of outdoor experience isolated and perfected within a domestic interior.
 

Germinating More Culture
This edition was printed for presentation in the Germination Portfolio at the
2006 Southern Graphics Conference.
 
Field and Home
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The Field and Home Collection (litho & drypoint; suite of 6 images; each edition 10; 14" X 22"; 2000) pairs local field specimens, labeled with their unfamiliar latin names, and evocatively named home-decor colour swatches. Identified nature is romanced: made at once exotic and familiar.

Complete Listing of Field and Home

 
Garden Pieces 1998 - 2000

These images examine cultivated nature.

 

 

Parterre

gifts received
fragments
souvenirs
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Parterre: An outdoor garden/room meant for contemplative strolling. (litho, drypoint, acrylic & flocking; 1995-) This suite examines three collections of natural and nature inspired objects. In each large scale print hands choose, examine and compare elements. Coloured maple buds link the three images to each other and previous Acer work. In contrast to the apparent scattering of information in the central grouping, each editioned print is bordered with a formal distillation of the contained imagery in the form of a Renaissance inspired flocked pattern.
Although based on locally found flora and fauna in my own collections, Parterre suggests links to early botanicals where colour and black and white information is merged in scientific/artistic catalogues of peculiarities in familiar and novel species. The abstract quality of some of these botanicals, perceived when groups of closely observed forms are viewed together on a page, clearly relates to the work as well.
The majority of the Parterre thinking is built upon the original matrices in combination with other litho and intaglio matrices, drawing and painting. These related images consider alternate recognitions within collections of information. This work continues to quietly evolve as new information is chosen, examined and compared.

Complete Listing of Parterre

 

Canadensis

paratypes Les Rouges Taiga On Water Sensitive (Kearney) Bluffs (Scarborough)
hush and i walked out from the sea la baleine stones of avalon en hivert

The Canadensis Suite considers choice from the point of view of a 20th Century journey of exploration. The work is specific to three historic Canadian locales, with echoes of previous imagery suggesting a method, history and overall context for the collection. Canadensis is a re-exploration of territory long known and inhabited: An echo of former documents of discovery in a collection of images of the familiar. Within this familiarity is an acceptance of the less than perfect, the dried and twisted, the discoloured and decomposing. The specific identification of forms is less important than this sense of familiarity - a possible recognition, a similarity, a reminder.
(litho; suite of 12 images; each edition 10; 26"X20"; 1997-1999)

Complete Listing of Canadensis


 Acer Family Viewing
Norway Maple Bud
litho 1991
Black Maple Bud
litho 1991

Red Maple Seed Flowers
litho and pochoir 1991

Red Maple Pollen Flowers

litho and pochoir 1991

A Promise

litho & pochoir 1992

Winter Red

litho & pochoir 1992
A Granite Monument
litho 1992
January Velvet
litho 1992
Trust
litho & pochoir 1992
Crimson King
litho & pochoir 1992
Schwedlerii
litho 1992
Morgan Red
litho 1992
Velvet Spur
litho 1992
Twins
litho 1992
Lee's Red
litho & pochoir 1992
First Red Burst
litho & pochoir 1992
Manitoba Maple
litho 1992
Tender Green
litho 1992
Globosum
litho & pochoir 1992
Moose Maple in Flame
litho & pochoir 1992
Silver & Gold
litho & pochoir 1992
Marsh Sugar Maple
litho & pochoir 1992
Monarch
litho 1992
Scarlet Empress
litho & pochoir 1992
Vernal Reach
litho & pochoir 1993
Early Bloom
litho & pochoir 1993
Scanlon Gold
litho 1993
The Deb
litho & pochoir 1993
Tumescence
litho & pochoir 1993
Night Vision
litho & pochoir 1993
Black Maple
litho, pochoir & goldleaf 1993
Temporal Observance (Olmstead)
litho, pochoir & goldleaf 1993

Silver Maple Bud
litho & pochoir 1993

Acer Family Viewing comprises thirty-three editions of lithographs which present traditional keys to memory - accurate portraits of individuals at specific stages of development. This work arose from an examination and collection of brilliant maple tree buds on winter walks through Toronto's Mount Pleasant Cemetery and Arboretum. Consideration of memory, public and private, is natural to this site.
(litho; suite of 33 images; each edition 10; 11"X15"; 1991-1994; $300)

In 150 Maples an iconic representation of a maple bud form is present for each maple known. Here in the accumulation of information, it is the repetition of sameness that underlines the commonality of experience: Maple. Family and history merge in an installation which suggests an heraldic precedent.

 
 
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