Gabriel Warren, the first artist-in-residence in Antarctica, creates sculptures using natural ice formations as source material. Polar Probings, an exhibit of works by the artist, will be on display from October 13 through December 8 in the Fine Arts Gallery in Cohen Memorial Hall on the Peabody campus. The opening reception is on Thursday, October 13, from 5 to 7 pm, and Warren will give a gallery talk at 6 pm.
Layered with meanings and references to the condition of the planet, the artist’s works are based on his close observations of the behavior of ice in its many forms. The show also includes an outdoor sculpture installation adjacent to Cohen near the 21st Avenue South entrance.
Warren intends his sculpture “to reflect the beauty of the natural sources from which they emerge….They represent my attempts to triangulate an understanding of a single natural phenomenon: ice.” Although ice is not the only source in the natural world for Warren’s “sculptural probings, it is the dominant one,” he notes, “and has been so for decades. Ice exhibits mind-numbing variability and variety on a visual plane, and, on a scientific one, understanding its behavior is key to understanding many other components of our world.”
Dividing his time between his studio and residence in Rhode Island and his summer home in Nova Scotia near the sea, Warren travels frequently to Antarctica, making his 1999 trip as the recipient of a National Science Foundation “Artists and Writers in Antarctica” grant.
This exhibition is in conjunction with the campus-wide initiative on sustainability with support from the Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities, the Department of English, the Dean’s Office, College of Arts and Science, and the American Studies Program.