In the green and silver chorus of the grass
they lose themselves, the bright particulars
in the single that is singular,
the one stem your eyes are suddenly unsealed to see,
jointed with the latest, fragile, golden light…
- excerpt from The One Stem by Kay Smith
Sheryl Crowley and Deborah Payne have let their eyes “be unsealed to see” and have discovered the unique, the detail, the particularity and the insight of otherwise unnoticed ordinary objects
In the past few years, I have been collecting mysterious, curious, and sometimes comical looking metallic thingamajigs. I’m not sure what half of them are or what the other half are called but a quirky bend, a rough sheen, a texture grabbed my imagination and I would take a handful to add to my growing hoard of oddments. The day I found that first bag of wire springs I was in ecstasy! So much potential! Poet Kay Smith found such joy in seeing one single blade of grass among a thousand. Her poems have stayed with me over the many years and I am so glad to borrow just a smidgeon of her work to inspire our exhibit. So much wonder we can find in the mundane surrounding us. So much richness of form and texture, colour and finish.
Coming from a mosaic perspective, I looked to the combining of glass and ceramic tiles, pottery shards, glass beads and my metallic menagerie to allow me to express my whimsy and darkness. The pieces grew very spontaneously at times and other times it was a bit like a long labour. Not much happening but you have to keep going and hope you see the light crowning.
The whimsy came through in the Sushi and Douglas Avenue Found pieces. I have a friend who is a sushi chef and his food is a delight to the palate and to the eye and inspired me to my interpretations. The architecture where I live, near Douglas Avenue in Saint John, is full of fanciful gingerbread trim and towers and wide verandas. My metal anchors and shelf supports and whatchamacallits sort of looked like they would lend themselves to an architectural incarnation. Maybe by the end of the show some of you will have told me what some of the metal is really for?
One’s mind can fall into some rough holes sometimes. Always nice to get to the part of the cycle where you rise up again after hitting that dark bottom. Bounce. The feelings around depression, optimism, serenity and finding creativity have taken a long time to fret and meander inside of me and finally to birth into art. I pass them to you.
Be careful. The glass will cut.
But I hope the springs make you grin. I just love those things!