Artists light up Jackson Gallery

MIDDLEBURY — Emerging from the darkness of a chilly winter and in anticipation of the warmth and renewal of spring, the Jackson Gallery presents “The Light Show,” an exhibit of unique lamps and lanterns created by Vermont artists. Among the group are Clay Mohrman, Kristian Brevik, York Hill Pottery artisans Elizabeth Saslaw and Susan Kuehnl, and Cindi Duff. The exhibit features artful and surprising choices of design and materials to decorate each source of illumination.
The exhibit will be on display, Friday, Feb. 15-March 24. An opening reception will be held on Friday, Feb. 15, from 5-7 p.m.
Clay Mohrman, of Clay Mohr Lighting, creates sculptural lamps out of wood from the forests and shores surrounding Lake Champlain. The Burlington artist uses lighting to connect interior spaces with nature through the combination of LED lighting technology and the found wood. Using geometric form, function and materials, the sculptures exist at the intersection of nature and the built environment. Mohrman designs floor lamps, sconces, table lamps, as well as larger commissioned illuminated sculptures including two public art works completed for Spruce Peak Lodge in Stowe.
Kristian Brevik earned a B.A. in Biological Sciences and Evolutionary Biology and also Sculpture, and is currently a Ph.D. student of Plant and Soil Science. His art is definitely informed by his study of science and nature. Using wood, paper, cloth, bone and glue, many of his lamps take the form of whales whose skeletal structure is revealed upon illumination. He states that his art “explores the interactions between humans and other-than-humans, by highlighting the commonalities of form shared by ships and whales, by wondering about the ways we shape each other; through domestication, eating each other, and changing each other’s experience of the world, increasingly through extinction.”
Additional works include table lamps from York Hill Pottery, whose carefully crafted stoneware has been exhibited widely. Each piece of pottery is hand-thrown on an electric wheel by Lincoln artist Elizabeth Saslaw who founded the studio in 1980. Many are hand-decorated by Susan Kuehnl, who has a fine mastery of Oriental brush work. Lamps by Cindi Duff are made of recycled parts using a “retired” musical instrument as the base. Duff often researches the origins of the instruments she finds, many of which are well-used brass and woodwinds, though one lamp is built around a ukulele. Her creations are surprising and delightful.
The Jackson Gallery is located in the lower level of Town Hall Theater, a community and cultural venue located in the center of Middlebury. Gallery hours are Monday through Saturday 12-5 p.m., and an hour before any public events in the building. For further information call (802) 382-9222 or visit townhalltheater.org or www.StudioPerdue.com.

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