Michael Peterson: Evolution/Revolution
This catalogue details the Evolution/Revolution exhibition at the Bellevue Arts Museum in Bellevue, Washington—and later at the Center for Art in Wood in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania from November 2010 to February 2011. The exhibition represented the first comprehensive look at the poetic sculpture of Michael Peterson. Inspired and heavily influenced by the Northwest coast’s atmospheric and geographical features, Peterson has left an indelible mark on his craft through his interpretation of his surroundings. This groundbreaking exhibition follows the unique artistic trajectory of his work over the past twenty years. Throughout his oeuvre, Peterson has centered on the spiritual universe, interpreting it in the visible components of the natural world.
This exhibition traces the evolution of Peterson’s early works; whose outcomes were heavily dictated by the lathe—the mechanical tool wood turners typically use to produce symmetrically shaped objects—to the most current works that illustrate his departure into the realm of sculpture realized through his mastery of the chainsaw—a revolution for Peterson.
In his studio and home on isolated Lopez Island—one of Washington State’s San Juan Islands—Peterson is dedicated to his work, content to explore a slower universe of his own preoccupations far from the influence of the fast-paced world around him. His sculptures are the result of a pared-down and unhurried cerebral narration, exploring the subtle equations of form, color, tonality, texture, material, light and shadow, solid and void, composition and balance. Peterson’s work evokes the timeless cycles of birth, growth, and wearing away; his work invites us to pause and contemplate moments that symbolize our deep yearning to be one with the forces that touch us all and reflect our human longing to know our place within the grand scheme of creation.
This catalogue features essays by Robyn Horn, Matthew Kangas, and Kevin Wallace, and an interview with Michael Peterson by Michael W. Monroe
© 2009 Bellevue Arts Museum
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