Page 53 - The Hunt Magazine - Winter 2019
P. 53

                   That’s valuable advice when there’s so much to see. From Red Grooms’ fanci-
ful 2002 cast, “Henry Moore in a Sheep Meadow,” to the aluminum “Two Face Telescope” by Elizabeth Strong-Cuevas, to Peter Woytuk’s sprawling bronzes, “Bull #4” and “Bull #5,” the variety of materials, styles, scale and techniques is astonishing.
Seward Johnson’s own figures are some of the most fun. “I want my work to disappear into the landscape and then take a viewer by surprise,” Johnson has said. “After he gets over the shock of being fooled, it becomes an emotional discovery.”
And fooled you’ll be. Your first reaction when coming across a couple deep in con- versation or a young girl reading a book in the grass may be, “Oh, excuse me!” even as the realization dawns that you’re talking to a sculpture. Pieces from Johnson’s Celebrating the Familiar series regularly evoke that response, as do works from his Impressionist-inspired series Beyond the Frame, which consists of elaborate tableaux that allow viewers to walk into the scenes of familiar Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings.
A delightful aspect of Grounds For Sculpture is that you’re permitted to touch and interact with most of the outdoor sculp- tures. Take Johnson’s “Were You Invited?” inspired by Pierre-Auguste Renoir’s 19th- century masterpiece, “The Luncheon of the Boating Party.”Viewers can actually join the action and mingle with the diners, fulfilling Johnson’s goal to create an intimacy with the painting that the painting itself doesn’t allow.
“Garden State”
by Isaac Witkin, 1997. ©Estate of Isaac Witkin.
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