Nature center as art asylum

outdoor sculpture made of waxed butcher paper and baling wire by Gerri Sayler nestled in the grass at Palouse-Clearwater Environmental InstituteBefore moving forward on a new outdoor sculpture, I wanted to remember an outdoor sculpture I created in 2007.

Two Forms was a class project, destined for the trash heap at the end of the semester. But I couldn’t bring myself to let it go just then. So this beloved nature center became an asylum for the artwork, where it was nestled into grasses and allowed to disintegrate through fall and winter.

By spring, the vinyl coated waxed craft paper had disappeared into the earth. All that remained were two baling wire armatures, squashed flat by months spent under the weight of snow. How I wish now that I had photos!

My sculpture making at that time grew out of a passion for mimicking nature’s forms, especially things that once bulged with life, then were emptied. Life = presence + absence.

Since then, I’ve become increased focused on artwork that transcends form, by using the barest of materials to distill landscapes, real and imagined, to their essence to speak metaphorically of time.