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Friday’s Field Trip: A Day of Play in a Sculpture Garden

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After weeks of bad weather, (rain, snow, freezing rain, winter mix, sleet) we finally had a sunny day on Friday. I decided to head over to the Delaware Art Museum, walk their Labyrinth and enjoy their sculpture garden.

Several of the sculptures in the Copeland Sculpture Garden are immensely popular in Wilmington, probably because they are so accessible. The Crying Giant by Tom Otterness is a perfect example. Children love, love, love this piece. They sit on the feet, swing around the legs; make up stories about why the giant is crying, and try to make the giant feel better. That level of interaction between artwork and its audience is hard to find.

Crying Giant Image  by Tom Otterness  Image Copyright Gail A. Sisolak 20123

Trickster Joe Moss, Delaware artist and Newark resident, creates art pieces equally engaging. His sculptures frequently have both a sight and sound component. Orifice II, his bright red disks, is a perfect example. The center directs the viewers gaze to a specific point, while the bowed shapes reflect sound.

Orifice II by Joe Moss Image Copyright 2013 by Gail A. Sisolak

Orifice II by Joe Moss Image Copyright 2013 by Gail A. Sisolak

In these two videos, made by the Delaware Division of the Arts, Moss shares some of his work and his design processes.

My personal favorite is a kinetic sculpture by George Rickey called Three Rectangles Horizontal Jointed Gyratory III. Gyratory? I love new words, so I was immediately intrigued. It only takes a few seconds for the wind to shift and the TRHJG to whirl, creating an entirely new work of art. This would make an ideal gorilla art project. I’d love to sneak in the gardens in the dead of night, and put stickers on the rectangles saying “Oz,” “Narnia” and “Neverland,” and turn the sculpture into a dancing signpost. I’ll have to Photoshop one of my photos some day, since I’d never REALLY destroy another artist’s work.

Three Rectangles Horizontal Jointed Gyratory III by George Rickey  Image Copyright 2013 by Gail A. Sisolak

Three Rectangles Horizontal Jointed Gyratory III by George Rickey Image Copyright 2013 by Gail A. Sisolak

At least I am constant in my affection. I saw Rickey’s Two Red Lines at the Oakland Museum sometime prior to 1973, and it made a lasting impression on me. If fact, it is one of only two pieces I remember seeing.

He’s a video of his work.

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