LAUREL – The Montpelier Arts Center recently held its 35th Annual Invitational Sculpture Exhibition: Spatial Interpretation, inside its main gallery. Various artists were chosen by invitation only to present their body of work inside the center’s main gallery space. The reception kicked off on June 10 and will be open to the public for viewing […]
LAUREL – The Montpelier Arts Center recently held its 35th Annual Invitational Sculpture Exhibition: Spatial Interpretation, inside its main gallery.
Various artists were chosen by invitation only to present their body of work inside the center’s main gallery space. The reception kicked off on June 10 and will be open to the public for viewing through July 31.
Every spring, the center holds an open call for artists in Maryland to submit their artwork along with a proposal, an artist statement and a resume. All of the artist’s information is then handed over to a juror who makes the final selections. This year’s juror is Lisa Schumaier with the Torpedo Factory Art Center in Alexandria, Va.
Among the artists who were chosen to show off their work was Kevin Rohde, an experienced sculpture artist who lives and works in Baltimore. His solo exhibition entitled, “Threads That Bind Us Together,” explores society’s relationship with clothing and different garments influence societal ideas such as consumerism, classicism and societal development, according to the arts center’s website.
“Living in a capitalist economy, I experience people being persuaded in a multitude of ways to accumulate things. Whether it be an accumulation of materials or a buildup of ideas based on social cues, I am interested in how these things affect a person’s perception of success. I question how this consumption is connected to ideas of value, happiness and power,” Rohde said.
In discussing Rohde’s display made up of ceramic sculptures in various forms, Montpelier Arts Center’s Assistant Director Susanna Fields-Kuehl described his work as “hyper-realistic.”
Rohde, who is currently working in residence at Tainan National University of the Arts in Tainan, Taiwan, said he wants to accomplish something specific through his work.
“I hope there will be an exchange when viewers interact with my sculptures. My aim is to elicit some emotional response within the viewer, giving them just enough information to provide a framework for them to construct a narrative based on their own experiences,” Rohde said.
Rohde was first intrigued by art as a young child and was encouraged to hone his creative abilities by his sister and mother. One of his earliest memories of sculpting was when he carved a block of ice colored with food coloring that was molded in a milk carton in his family’s freezer.
The body of work he is creating now is an experiment in culture. It is in the beginning stages, which he described as “difficult.” His goal is to express a dialogue between actual experience and perceived notions.
“Living in a world where so much information is available to us without leaving our homes, it is increasingly difficult to differentiate between truth and fiction. I am examining that line,” Rohde said.
One unique aspect the art center offers is the Resident Art Gallery. Rather than just looking at an artwork on the wall, visitors are able to see the process of the artwork being created and ask the artist questions.
“We’re really trying to make a place where if you don’t know about art, you can feel comfortable to find out about art,” Fields-Kuehl said. “I think that really helps the person who may not be familiar with art or the creative process.”
A lot of preparation goes into creating the art exhibition. Elizabeth Crisman, the technical director for the arts center, helped set up pedestals and the placement of Rohde’s work for display purposes.
“We’re sort of a multi-faceted arts center,” she said.
To continue providing the public with ongoing art displays, the arts center is in the process of making plans for next year’s season. Because it’s an annual cultural exhibition, there will be another artist in the fall who will also get the chance to present his or her artwork in the same space for approximately six to eight weeks.
To find out more information, contact the Montpelier Arts Center at 410-792-0664 or by email at Montpelier.firstname.lastname@example.org.