Michael Hall, I Hold You Tight To Keep You Safe, 2007, 6 x 5 ft., oil on canvas, courtesy of the artist
Since earliest recorded history, birds have inspired both awe and superstition. Their flapping, singing, tapping, and preening feed our imaginations, visiting not only the dreams of artists, but the collective consciousness of the entire human race. For this exhibition, we have created our very own exotic aviary, featuring the work of more than 40 artists from around the world.
Troy Abbott Lauren Ari Eiko Borcherding Ria Brodell Jasmina Cibic Emilie Clark Timothy Cummings Sarah Louise Davey Lauren DiCioccio Jessica Joslin Christina Empedocles Mandy Greer Michael Hall Rita Harowitz Nicole Jean Hill Dennis Hlynsky Isabella Kirkland Walter Kitundu Malia Landis Hung Liu Nathan Lynch Kara Maria Stephanie Metz Susan Middleton
Robert Minervini Vik Muniz Jose Nuniz Elisabeth Higgins O’Connor Selene Perez Robb Putnam Alan Rath Alexis Rockman Alexander James Rohrig Clare Rojas Jane Rosen Laurel Roth Hope Anne Siems Deborah Simon Kiki Smith Sarah Smith Inez Storer Kevin Earl Taylor Esther Traugot Tara Tucker Carlos Villa Gerald Wiggins Gail Wight Darren Waterston
Friday Night at the Art Center: Opening Celebration for Bird in the Hand
Friday, January 22, 7 - 10 p.m. Palo Alto Art Center, 1313 Newell Road FREE
Celebrate the opening of Bird in the Hand with hands-on artmaking, food trucks, a cash bar provided by the Palo Alto Art Center Foundation, and photo opportunities with feathered friends from the Junior Museum & Zoo.
Double Take by Patrick Dougherty: A site-specific installation
January 2011 -
Patrick Dougherty and detail of Ruaille Buaille (Hijinx) 2008, Parklands in County Offaly, Ireland. Photo: James Fraher
The Palo Alto Art Center is honored to present a monumental, site-specific installation by Patrick Dougherty, one of the nation’s most prominent environmental sculptors. The public may view the artist’s creative process during his three week artist residency, January 11- 28, 2011, on the grounds of the Palo Alto Art Center.
Identified as the Jackson Pollock of saplings by art critic John Perreault, Patrick Dougherty is a process-oriented artist whose lyrical, organic works are created specifically for each site. Made from local and renewable willow saplings, his works embody natural life cycles, changing over time as the sticks settle and decay, eventually returning to the earth from which they grew. Dougherty has created over 200 monumental site-specific installations on the grounds of major museums, universities, botanical gardens, and private residences worldwide. The resulting works evoke a wide array of natural forms, ranging from nests to objects with a transparent architecture, like woodland dwellings, or basketry.
Environmental sensitivity is a major concern for the artist. Saplings are gathered from maintained sources so that the branches grow back to make new sticks for future uses. Dougherty does not use any artificial supports in his constructions because the inherent properties of saplings cause them to snag and entangle easily.
While there is a signature quality to his work, each of his compelling sculptures relates specifically to the physical site in a unique way. Dougherty believes that ideas percolate at the actual venue and that “the success of a piece lies in capturing the essence of a place and then playing with what you make of that essence.” Unlike other sculptors, he initially conceives of his work by making a series of word associations on both the physical and social qualities of a site. He is conscious of drawing in space, as he weaves sticks with lighter and darker colors and varying widths and lengths.
This project is commissioned by the Palo Alto Art Center Foundation and co-sponsored by the Palo Alto Public Art Commission. It is made possible by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.