OSWEGO — SUNY Oswego’s third biennial outdoor sculpture exhibition will feature six works, ranging from a 10-foot-tall geometric piece with a wind-driven pinwheel to an assemblage of megaphone-like cones that encourage dialog to make the sculpture garden a sound garden.
Erected by the end of August on concrete pads around a maple grove between Marano Campus Center and Penfield Library, the 2018-20 exhibition arises from proposals submitted to a Sculpture Selection Committee of faculty, staff and a student representing several SUNY Oswego departments.
Bob Turan of Earlville was the first of the sculptors to arrive on campus this summer to install his steel and aluminum piece, titled “Square Dance.” It consists of a box with circular cutouts, balancing on a pyramid and encasing a red pinwheel that spins even in relatively low wind. In 2014-16, the sculptor participated in the college’s inaugural exhibition of outdoor sculptures with “Pileated Woodpecker Totem.”
Turan pointed out that renewable energy also comes to the fore in Manhattan-based artist Steve Lowy’s sculpture, “Butterfly Effect,” which features two solar panels, its own lighting and stained glass in an aluminum frame. The panels are rated at 40 watts, and each day charge a battery that generates 12 volts DC of electrical energy.
Gabriella D’Angelo’s piece, “Pop-Up Sound Garden,” intends through its polyethylene cones to generate energy of the audible kind. “Providing the public with the power to co-create shelter and space through the activation of the garden, exploring a civic and interactive tool, (the sculpture) acknowledges a shift in the creation and ownership of the architecture or landscape, making it more democratic and in-tuned with societal needs and desires,” wrote D’Angelo, an assistant professor of art and architecture at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, in an artist’s statement.
‘Mosaic of hope’
Artist miChelle M. Vara of Wilton returns to the SUNY Oswego exhibition for the third time, this time with “Harmony,” a nearly 11-foot-tall steel “mosaic of hope, light and care, in an energy dance of balance, raising each other to optimum self,” according to the sculptor.
Jim Gallucci, a Greensboro, North Carolina, veteran of the college’s last outdoor sculpture exhibition, offers “Red Digital Arch,” a 10-foot-tall gateway of powder-coated steel. “I have conceptualized, fabricated and installed public sculpture for over 30 years,” Gallucci said in an artist’s statement. “I strive to create works that are accessible to the public, that inspires them and hopefully makes them aware of the positive impact art can have in everyday life.”
New York City-based sculptor Dev Harlan contributes “Parmenides I,” a 360-pound polyhedron in welded aluminum.
Such structures are found in nature — for example, the atomic structures of minerals — Harlan calls polyhedra “anti-historical — they could be discovered by any intelligent life anywhere.”
His sculpture “becomes a reference to the idea of universals that exist outside human experience, a part of ‘nature’ that defies anthropocentrism.”
As Turan finished installation of “Square Dance,” he talked about how he came to outdoor sculpture almost 20 years ago when his wife paid his way into a welding class for his birthday.
“I enjoy fabrication as much as design, and often change designs in the middle of my work,” Turan said. He now teaches a course titled “Burning Steel: Welded Sculpture 1.0” at Snow Farm, a New England craft program.
“I’m just delighted to be back this year,” said Turan, who last exhibited — and won an award with — “Square Dance” in Winterton, North Carolina. “This piece was not available in 2014 (the start of Oswego’s first such exhibition) — it was in Washington.”
Members of SUNY Oswego’s Sculpture Exhibition Committee included Michael Flanagan, director of Tyler Art Gallery; Miranda Traudt, director of arts presentation; Cynthia Clabough, art department chair and professor; teacher certification candidate Eileen Fioramonti, a May 2018 graduate in studio art and a representative of the Arts Alive club; Benjamin Entner and Amy Bartell, both members of the art department; Juan La Manna of music; Richard Bush of technology; Jonel Langenfeld of theatre; and interim theatre chair Jennifer Knapp, who is associate dean of the School of Communication, Media and the Arts.
For more information, contact Flanagan at [email protected]