Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Into the Maryhill Museum Sculpture Garden

The Maryhill Museum of Art

Just west of the Stonehenge Memorial is the Maryhill Museum. It sits on a high bluff overlooking the Columbia River from Washington State. It is a grand place that originally was the home of Sam Hill.

On the East side of the grounds was the RV parking and just South of that area was something special. Below is its description in their own words. Note the concrete shapes and the sign Sharyn is reading.

In art speak it's defined as a site specific interpretative sculpture... in everyday terms it's an information kiosk.

... Since Maryhill is a museum of art, we wanted our kiosk to engage your mind and senses, as well as provide you with information. To do that we replaced the traditional kiosk structure with a sculpture and made the interpretative panels (posters) it's satellites.

Hopefully the sculpture offers you a thought provoking way to experience the striking grandeur of the surrounding landscape.

How? You have to interact with it... look through it, walk through it.When you do., you'll discover that its many openings, plazas, and canopies frame and echo the contours of the land creating a sense of place... and, in time, the experience will heighten your sense of where you are.

The interpretative panels expand that heightened sense even further by presenting more vistas and a greater understanding of what is special about this part of the world.

... this project continues and updates that tradition [Sam Hill's]. Like most of his other monuments, it is made of concrete... Sam's favorite building material.

While it is hard to explain the feeling walking through and around this sculpture I have to say it is very thought provoking and worth exploring.

The more I saw and explored the more I saw and I'm sure I could spend a day or so looking at the angles and spaces as well as the view of the Columbia flowing far below.

I especially liked the alignment of this set of grooves looking across the river into Oregon...

... and the back of Sharyn's head.

The path winds around with markers and information all along the walk and ...

... a bench to sit and view the scenery.

My favorite view of the sculpture however is standing to the north looking south and the alignment with the mound on the ridge in Oregon in the distance.

On the Northeast side of the Museum of Art is a sculpture garden (this is for Elaine my sculptor sister) filed with fantasy and set in a beautiful tree filled garden. Some were fun ...

... and others filled with bright color...

... and some were humanly shaped like Francisco Salgdo's Familia in painted steel....

... but they were exciting to see.

"Mike Suri’s dramatic iron sculpture, Brushing, was inspired by a tree, swept fully horizontal by the wind, which was thriving on the edge of a cliff. “I was immediately taken with the dynamism between these two powerful natural occurrences — the tree firmly rooted and full of life and the wind blowing hard and constant. The title comes from a term used in the wind power industry to describe the act of trees growing horizontally. When a site is found with this effect it is a sign of constant and high wind force. The bluff at Maryhill will make a perfect setting for the sculpture,” says Suri. "

This is a pretty great thought based on an ancient design - Taco Bell by Tom Herrera - it is painted steel.

The setting was perfect for the works of art like Look Mom! Uncle Nelson!...

... and this one titled Cheese Cake Delight both by David Wagner.

Lance Carleton created Flora Grande in 2004 and it is made of recycled steel. Go Green! In Art

This beauty is Malabar Bombax Matt Cartwright Tubing, pipe and strips of steel are cold formed to create an experiment inspired by interference patterns, bright colors and chaotic organic geometry to maximize visual LOUDNESS!!!

Jeff Tangen created Illuminated Grove from steel and plastic.

Jeff says "I use found and rediscovered objects to create metal sculpture and kinetic art. My kinetic pieces are replicas of real or fantasy machines and they can serve as weather vanes. My sculptural pieces highlight the symmetry and beauty of the rediscovered metal. I strive for a unity of design and execution. I want my pieces to be seen as a single unit and not a collection of found objects"
The Seattle Times described Jeff's another of his work as "...a soaringly funky and graceful sculpture out of reclaimed metal and red stop lights..."

Leon White created this really nice work titled Moon Temple from granite and steel.

Sharyn's favorite was the stainless steel sculpture Quantum Man created by Julian Voss-Andreae who studied physics at the University of Vienna. Julian describes the sculpture this way, "Quantum physics describes a moving object as consisting of waves oriented perpendicular to its direction of motion."

Queen for a Day is another of Tom Herrera's pieces. Next blog inside the Maryhill museum you can see this work was inspired by the furniture of Queen Marie of Romania.

Julie Speidel created the graceful Laksmi the Goddess of Wisdom in bronze. "Julie Speidel's work is rooted in her fascination with ancient megaliths and is encouraged by her many travels abroad to Ireland, Turkey, and China" according to Winston Wachter

This piece is Reveal Line Mel Katz. It is made of steel.

"Originally trained as a painter, Katz has made sculptures since the early 1970s. Katz is the son of a pattern maker in New York, and his sculpture reflects his father's work in the garment trade: pattern making, tracing and cutting. The exhibition, which spans a 35-year period, includes work from his Grey Series, Sawtooth Series, Pedestal Series and Reveal Series." ~ Willamette University News

Jeffrey Weitzel, The Grace Blue, forms the centerpiece of the outdoor sculpture collection and it is a magnificent piece of work in Bronze.

Since we just saw a bronze piece of a bird and other colorful pieces I wasn't sure whether this was a real peacock until it moved...

Then I followed around just for fun and had a great time snapping pictures.

Then it was time to enter the Museum of art - more to come.

Scrabble Score - Scrabble Queen won enough said. Bah Humbug

Quote of the Day ~
"The inspiration for my work is rooted in the power of travel" ~ Julie Speidel

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©Paul Viel