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10th Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition

May 11, 1996 - Feb 28, 1997

Harold “Skip” Van Houten, Center Device. 1996 / 10th Rosen Sculpture Competition Winner.

Juror: Bruce White

Curator: Terry Suhre

On view year round, the Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competition and Exhibition is recognized as a dynamic component of the visual arts not only for Appalachian State University but across our region as well. The realization of programs such as this is possible through the participation of many talented and dedicated persons. It has been my pleasure to work on many installations during my tenure with ASU. I am most grateful to all who made this opportunity possible.

On behalf of An Appalachian Summer, the Office of Cultural Affairs, and the Catherine Smith Gallery I want to express our gratitude to all of the artists who participated in this year’s competition and congratulate those selected for the exhibition. We appreciate the artist’s efforts in making these works available to our community during the upcoming year. I wish to offer our sincerest thanks to our juror, Bruce White, for accepting the difficult challenge of adjudicating this year’s competition and commend him for selecting these outstanding works.

A generous annual gift from Martin and Doris Rosen makes the sculpture competition possible. Mr. and Mrs. Rosen continue to be a major force contributing to the cultural climate of the University and Northwest North Carolina. We are most grateful for their support and wish to extend our deepest appreciation.

Terry Suhre, Curator

Juror’s Statement

It is a great pleasure to return for the anniversary of the 10th Martin and Doris Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competition. To maintain a continuing exhibition of such quality is no easy task and speaks of the commitment of the Rosen’s too, as well as the University’s recognition of, the humanizing value of the arts in the educational and daily experience.

The current exhibition typifies public art of the 90’s with its diversity of ideas and innovative use of materials. While this would seem only natural to an age witnessing the most rapidly expanding technology the world has ever seen, contemporary sculpture is still, remarkably, overwhelming or mystifying to a large portion of the population who seem to feel “out of touch” with their artist peers. This bewilderment on the part of the viewers is often equally puzzling to the artist – that such a paradox would exist in a generation brought up in a fast moving culture which appears comfortable with the latest novelty in technology, fashion or music.

The lingering notion that a “set of rules” much exist to guide one to understanding the visual arts is as obsolete as saying one cannot listen to music or read a poem without a similar imposition. This is not to deny that the more one knows about anything the greater will be one’s appreciation. But must one know the title of a rare and unfamiliar species of a flower, or a captivating piece of music to enjoy the wonder of their existence – the latter a miracle of human creation.

Not too long ago while installing one of my sculptures, this on-site workman released a barrage of expletives directed toward the work. Without letting on, I pretended to question it myself, encouraging him to run his hand over the surface and discover the compound curves and unexpected junctions. At one point I asked him if he had ever found a “touchstone” that felt good in his hand. He responded enthusiastically and seemed to make a connection with the sculpture. Completing the installation, I returned several days later to find my new friend totally exasperated in his attempt to share the experience with his puzzled, and now “culturally disenfranchised,” family.

At best a sculpture is the rare and timely expression of the individual who did it – a friend listens, and shares the vision.

-Bruce White

Center Device: Harold “Skip” Van Houten

Ellisville, Mississippi

Johnny Miller Unequal Scenes Johannesburg, South Africia II

Steel, stone, and cement. 8′ x 11′ x 8′

Rosen Award 1st Place

Artist’s Comments

My large scale outdoor pieces are constructed in plate steel with contained stone. These pieces concentrate on the focus of energy in one internal point. These outdoor pieces could be compared to the exposed infrastructure of an airplanes fuselage. They are structural without having an external skin.

-Harold “Skip” Van Houten

Being: The End of Becoming: J. Paul Sires

Charlotte, North Carolina

 

Johnny Miller Unequal Scenes Johannesburg, South Africia II

Granite. 1′ x 4′ x 10′

Artist’s Comments

My origins are in the craft’s background. My work responds to materials and locations and my interest is in the function of a work both esthetically and formally. I am greatly aware of the relative perspective of the viewer: how and what the observer brings to a work. This seems to be a constant even as my work evolves and changes.

-Paul Sires

Divination of Mystery: Be Gardiner

Creston, North Carolina

Johnny Miller Unequal Scenes Johannesburg, South Africia II

Marble. 8′ x 3′ x 2′

On display now as part of the Permanent Collection

Artist’s Comments

I dreamed I was taking a young man I know, a boy who wants to be an artist, to a rival school’s encampment. It was night and he was very excited because he was going to steal their bulldozer. I warned him that it was old, in my dream mind I saw it’s hard rectangular seat and antiquated style; but his enthusiasm was un-dauntable.

What can I do but wish him well, wish us all well?

-Be Gardiner

About the Artist

Education: BFA (Religion), Univesity of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC.

Dual: Robert Wood

Kenmore, New York

Johnny Miller Unequal Scenes Johannesburg, South Africia II

Clay. 9′ x 4′ x 2′

Artist’s Comments

I chose to create my own “shards,” be they of civilization or ceramics, in an attempt to comment on the relationship between the history of Western civilization (which shapes our being) and the history of ceramics (which is rooted in the tradition of the vessel and the phenomena of the ceramic process). I utilize these “fragments” to explore the relationships between forms in an attempt to reveal the emotive power and energy that exists within various forms.

-Robert Wood

Immigrant Gate: Jim Gallucci

Greensboro, North Carolina

Johnny Miller Unequal Scenes Johannesburg, South Africia II

Steel. 10′ x 5′ 11″ x 3′

Artist’s Comments

Gates have been found throughout the history of Western Civilization as not only utilitarian architectural elements but as symbols in art and literature. This symbolism arises from the paradox that the gate inherently possesses. A gate may be open or closed; a way of passage or obstruction; a means of confinement or release. Today the symbol of a gate is used in the description of a computer chip at work, storing and releasing bytes of information. Architectural forms have always been part of my sculpture. Recently, I have begun to incorporate the element of the door or gate in my work. This new direction has given me a literal and symbolic format that uses the ideas or themes of monumental scale. The gates or doors may or may not function as real doors but the spatial relationship they present to the viewer creates a paradox of meaning. The viewer can open the sculpture and walk through it or see it as a barrier. The use of gates in sculpture has had a long history in Art and today they still hold symbolic meaning. The doors that I am creating are freestanding, and a sculpture statement in themselves.

-Jim Gallucci

Nomadic: Robert Taormina

Frasier, Michigan

Johnny Miller Unequal Scenes Johannesburg, South Africia II

Mixed media. 10′ x 5′ x 6′ 6″

Artist’s Comments

Nomadic is reminiscent of our nomadic past. It is a sculpture standing 10 feet tall, 5 feet wide, and 6.5 feet deep. It consists of a hull standing on its bow and supported by a bundle of 2 x 4s running from the bow to the underside of the hull. The hull is perforated with holes and in the hull is a strected semi-translucent animal skin. The sculpture faces north, transforming the hull into a shadow box. The sun shines through the holes in the hull, which projects tiny points of light onto the animal skin. This illumination will look like stars of the northern sky and as the day progresses, the stars will move across the skin.

The shapes and material reflect a sense of past journey as well as present and future. It juxtaposes natural and man-made materials – giving a feeling of placement for humanity. Yet this placement is forever changing, just as the stars we navigated from are forever moving.

-Robert Taormina

Ornythopterus: John Parker

Glenside, Pennsylvania

Johnny Miller Unequal Scenes Johannesburg, South Africia II

Painted steel. 10′ 7″ x 7′ 11″ x 5′

Artist’s Comments

My sculptures have evolved from a life long interest in nature. This interest spans the field study of insects and fascination of dinosaurs; to exotic flowers, from Orchids to tropicals such as the Bird of Paradise. I have combined nature with steel, in giving heavy industrial a living animated presence.

-John Parker

Root Dancer: Glenn Zweygardt

Alfred Station, New York

Johnny Miller Unequal Scenes Johannesburg, South Africia II

Stone, steel, and bronze. 8′ 2″ x 6′ 6″ x 1′

Artist’s Comments

Finding one’s place in a relationship with nature is the theme of my sculpture. I enjoy working with durable materials such as metals, stone, and glass. From these beginnings, a relationship between nature and myself is formed and developed. I further want to tell visual stories and comment on my collective life experiences. This need helps explain how my sculptures are developed and how I try to make my thoughts and feelings more tangible.

-Glenn Zweygardt

About the Artist

Born and raised in northwest Kansas, Glenn Zweygardt received his BFA from Wichita State University in sculpture and painting. He then earned his MFA from the Rinehart School of Sculpture at Maryland Institute College of
Art in Baltimore, Maryland.

For over 40 years, Glenn has been an active sculptor and educator. With more than 50 solo exhibitions and multiple purchase awards to his name, he shows works both nationally and internationally. His sculptures are included in many university, museum, outdoor and private collections.

Now an emeritus Professor of Sculpture at the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University, Glenn continues to make signature sculptures in his Alfred Station studio. His creations of steel, ductile iron, stainless steel, cast glass, cast bronze and aluminum are often combined with stone from around the world. These sculptures range from monumental outdoor works to small, intimate pieces.

For more information, visit www.glennzweygardt.com.

Something About a Journey: Carl Billingsley

Ayden, North Carolina

Johnny Miller Unequal Scenes Johannesburg, South Africia II

Steel. Multi-piece installation varies by site.

Artist’s Comments

Something about a Journey is the most narrative of my recent works. The various elements are symbols of various aspects of the journey, which itself is a symbol for the life cycle of Man. I leave it to the individual viewer to decide what each part symbolizes or represents and how they relate to each other. This sculpture changes with each venue, sometimes growing larger, sometimes smaller, but it always contains the basic elements; the Arch, the Tower, the Stele, the Resting Place and the Path. Each journey begins with a single step.

-Carl Billingsley

About the Artist

Carl Billingsley was born in Oklahoma and spent his formative years in a variety of locations as his father, a sergeant in the field artillery, was transferred from post to post. Three years in Germany made an indelible impression on Billingsley and he has returned to Europe as an adult many times. Billingsley teaches sculpture at the School of Art & Design, East Carolina University and has a very active exhibition schedule. Billingsley’s work can be found in collections and sculpture parks from North Carolina to Wisconsin. He has permanent public sculptures in Norway, Israel, Estonia, Japan, China and Brazil.

For more information, visit www.billingsleyatelier.com.

Untitled: Marcia Kaplan

Chicago, Illinois

Johnny Miller Unequal Scenes Johannesburg, South Africia II

Polyester. 4′ 7″ x 6′ x 6′

Artist’s Comments

I realize I have been involved from the early work, in making dwellings using basically skins of one kind or another to build my structures. The forms are from myself, but existing in nature and in my environment.

I attempt to make what I know and imagine.

-Marcia Kaplan

 

Curator’s Statement

The display of objects for the purpose of study has been a central part of academic research and study in universities since the seventeenth century. The study of unique and unusual objects was as important as exposure to texts, manuscripts or the master’s lectures. During the mid nineteenth century educators in the United States thought exposure to art would benefit the general public, elevating the intellectual and cultural level of the population. Museums and art galleries opened their doors to students, craftspersons and the general public with the intent to provide meaningful educational experiences for a recently prosperous society with increased leisure time.

Today the opportunity to see rare and remarkable objects is not relegated to the museum or art gallery. Images are as available as the newsstand, video store, amusement park, television, or personal computer. Our increasingly technological society puts entertainment and information virtually at our fingertips. So, has the information age made the exhibition an anachronism? What does the exhibition have to offer that hyper-media does not? Ultimately, the choice is between an experience of the simulacrum and the authentic. The strength of the exhibition exists on the premise that there is no substitute for the real thing, no matter how credible the reproduction.

The exhibition, as a mode of communication has a special role for the university gallery or museum. The university’s exhibition programs are often the first encounter a student has with actual works of art work, historic pieces, cultural objects and scientific materials. The intimacy of a one-on-one experience, particular to the exhibition, allows for an intellectual and emotional response that is a unique learning experience. A museum or gallery space is the usual site for art exhibition. However, when art moves from the confines of an institution’s white walls into public spaces the relationship between the object, the artist and the community changes. Art located in public places affects the dynamics of the space emotionally, intellectually and politically. The result may be celebration or controversy. In either case there may be a polarization of opinion over issues of ownership, money and the representation of community values.

The intent of art in public spaces is to enhance the cultural climate of a community and provide a forum for an exchange of ideas. Those goals are the same whether it is a performance on the plaza of a city, a mural on the wall of a municipal building or sculpture on a university campus. The purpose of the Tenth Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition is to enhance the image of the University as an institution committed to the arts and, most importantly to serve the educational mission of Appalachian State University. The installation of this season’s Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition marks a significant milestone. For ten years the Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition has brought to the campus outstanding examples of contemporary American sculpture. Through the continuous support of Martin and Doris Rosen the exhibition has grown in regional and national importance. This year will see the one hundredth work placed on campus. Over the past decade dozens of artists have visited to install their works, lecture and give workshops influencing thousand of students.

Established to broaden the scope of An Appalachian Summer Festival, the Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition is the primary visuals arts component of the festival. Critical to the success of the exhibition is the selection of noted critics, scholars and artists as jurors. The individual vision of past jurors has earned the Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competiton & Exhibition a reputation for consistently strong, challenging and focused shows. The role of an individual juror in selecting the works, rather than a committee, gives each season’s exhibition a particular character and spirit.

This diversity of character often results in controversy as visually and intellectually challenging objects are introduced to the campus each year. The early years saw some controversy and misunderstanding as to the intent and sources of support for the exhibition. Today the sculptures are fully integrated into the life of the University. The exhibition is used year round as a teaching tool by classes from many disciplines and the annual installations of the next season’s works is a much anticipated event. The exhibition has also acted as training for students who have gone on to work in art related fields. Assisting the gallery in the organization of the annual exhibition and later with the artists themselves provides students with insight in the working of the art world. The exhibition has made it possible for many sculptors to take the next step in their careers. The Martin and Doris Rosen Awards have allowed the winning artists to upgrade equipment, improve their working space and to travel.

The exhibition program of museums and art galleries has long been a part of first rate university curriculums. Today all across the country the value of art and exhibitions addressing cultural issues is questioned. Municipal, state and university museums and art galleries are under pressure to justify their existence. Institutions are scaling back their educational programs, canceling exhibitions, reducing operating hours and releasing staff in the name of fiscal and political necessity. The withdrawal of corporate, state, local and federal support of the arts is not about economics. It is about control of our cultural institutions and definition of our value systems. Art in public places runs counter to any agenda that restricts dialogue. Therefore, it is especially important, today, that programs such as the Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition remain a part of the University to challenge students and spark debate and interest into new areas of inquiry. Appalachian State University is especially fortunate to have a program like the Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition to enrich its community and to have the unconditional support of enlightened patrons like Martin and Doris Rosen.

Terry Suhre
Gallery Director 
Catherine J. Smith Gallery
Appalachian State University

A Special Thanks from the Curator

I want to take this opportunity to thank my colleagues in the Office of Cultural Affairs; Perry Mixter, Director for the Office of Cultural Affairs; Gil Morgenstern, Artistic Director for An Appalachian Summer; Sali Gill-Johnson, General Manger; Sara Heustess, Box Office Manager for Farthing Auditorium; Greg Williams, Technical Director for Farthing Auditorium; Jim Sigmon, Assistant Technical Director for Farthing Auditorium; Denise Weissberg, Director of Marketing and Public Relations; Elizabeth Loflin, Assistant Director of Marketing and Public Relations; and Sandra Black, Fiscal Officer. I also wish to acknowledge the support of Judy Humphrey, Interim Chair for the Department of Art; Dr. Clyde Robbins, Assistant Vice-Chancellor for Physical Plant Operations; Larry Bordeaux, Director of Facility Support Services; Douglas Canipe, Plant Maintenance Supervisor; Jim Bryan Grounds Supervisor; Evan Row, Safety Officer. I greatly appreciate their advice and encouragement.

My thanks to those whose skills and talents made this publication possible, including Michael Fanizza for providing an excellent design for this exhibition catalogue, Kim Johnson for coming back on board at the best possible time and Hank T. Foreman, for his hard work, good humor and friendship over the years.

To all of the above I extend my sincerest gratitude.

Terry Suhre

Details

Start:
May 11, 1996
End:
Feb 28, 1997
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