The exhibition “Structure and Edge: Exploration of Form” procured a large turnout Thursday evening, Feb. 28. Senior art major Grace Lombard curated the event in collaboration with local artist Curtis Stewardson, who has been working with ceramics for almost 25 years.
Observing the pieces, it was impossible not to note all of the varying forms, shapes and contrasting colors. Some pieces were mounted on walls while others were scattered across the room on lone pedestals.
Each fold and pivot was accentuated by carefully positioned under lights which brought each piece to life. Once the initial chatter settled, Lombard took the opportunity to thank everyone for being there, particularly GC lecturer of art Ernesto Gomez and artist Stewardson.
“Your patience, professionalism and hard work has really made this an experience I will remember for a long time,” Lombard said in regard to Gomez.
She spoke about the long process leading up to the exhibition and about the careful thought that went into showing off each piece.
“I wanted the complexity of these pieces to show by placing them all in a way that as you look at them, you can just see right behind it, so as to draw the viewer in,” Lombard said.
When given a moment to speak about his work, Stewardson told the audience about his creation method and the working process of his own artistic inquiry.
“These objects elude to industrial architecture,” Stewardson said. “What I’m trying to do is combine the
grandness, the thing that attracts me to architecture, and the ugliness of plain iron. I want them to be anxious cultural markers, so they can point to our culture’s tainted relationships between the promise of prosperity that industry provides and the poisonous environmental legacy that the communities who host these plants may hold and are forced to deal with.”
Each piece in the collection seemed to hold a different metaphor. While his plain iron sculptures reminded one of a factory, his other creations were bright and colorful, consisting of wild folds, bends and twists which created a whimsical feeling and came across as playful and toy-like.
Lombard put it perfectly when recounting her feelings of Stewardson’s collection: “The whole concept of breaking something apart, putting it back together, making it rely on itself, the whole idea in itself is such a contradiction that I loved it.”
Photos by Lexie Baker | Staff Writer