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Monday, September 25, 2023

Life + Arts

Gallery displays dynamic work

Gallery 3 is a mixed media art gallery that displays the work of a variety of artists, including ceramists, sculptors, carpenters, painters and photographers.’

Robert Derr oversees and provides guidance in the creative endeavors of the artists who run Gallery 3 Co-Op. Derr is a self-taught wood carver from Houston whose artistic narrative began in Africa. ‘

‘On a trip through Kenya, Tanzania and the Comoros Island, I stopped to watch a group of artisans and bought the femur shaped adze from one of them as a souvenir,’ Derr said. ‘

Fascinated by the adze, a carving hand tool with a curved blade, Derr began to imagine the potential of its creative impact.

‘If the African could produce such beautiful work with such simple tools, perhaps then, so could I,’ Derr said.

While spending time in Belgium in the early ’90s, Derr felt inspired to create a carved likeness of a trumpeting angel.’ He explained that he studied the techniques necessary to create the piece at a neo-classical 17th century abbey church in Floreffe, Belgium.’

‘It went faster than I thought possible. I had found my voice,’ Derr said. ‘I abandoned my career as a landscape gardener to devote myself to sculpture.’

Derr brings creativity and liveliness to Gallery 3.’ His whimsical three-dimensional piece ‘Art Crawler’ depicts a human-like creature, complete with gloved hands, beige shoes and a steel tail. The object pushes a shopping cart as it searches for cans and rusted odds and ends. ‘

This shopping excursion is thought provoking, as ‘Art Crawler’ seems to be searching for the pieces that are similar to the materials that compose its body.

The piece displays a critical aspect of the artistic process: looking at materials in the context of ‘what they could be,’ instead of limiting oneself to the materials’ current state. In this creative exploration, one must crawl around to look for art materials in unconventional places.

Paula Hawkins displays her paintings at Gallery 3. Hawkins said she paints in a style that draws from several influences.

‘(I use) a style I call quantum realism,’ Hawkins said. ‘It’s a mostly-realistic, impressionist, Van Gogh, Monet, N.C. Wyeth style. … Quantum realism combines art and quantum physics.’

Hawkins’ ‘Homecoming’ also conveys the theme of exploration. The painting contains a woman with flowing orange hair kissed with blonde highlights running through a field of flowers with horses trotting behind her. This piece is quite fanciful and ethereal, taking viewers into another realm.

‘I believe art can touch your subconscious in a way logic cannot,’ Hawkins said. ‘By tapping into a different viewpoint, you can create change and make a lasting impact.’

Art enthusiasts can view the dynamic work showcased at Gallery 3 from 1 to 5 p.m. every Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

The second Saturday of every month marks the open gallery event, where viewers can interact with the artists.

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