Frozen Presquile bay at Presquile Provincial Park In winter, my favourite season, skating helps me think and gather ideas. Out here on the frozen bay at Presqu’ile, with a view made of nothing but shadow and light, shapes and line, my thoughts turn to my latest work in progress — a most exciting sculptural prototype.

I studied sculpture in my undergrad and loved it then, and have continued to love it. I’ve allowed my work to take on a three dimensional form, but it’s not until this winter that I truly revisited this love of sculpture. It required math and figuring, design and research. Playing with the shadows that happen in sculpture. In the stillness of Covid time and the quietness of the winter, it was wonderful to push those thoughts and tentative designs and reoccurring dreams to this plywood prototype, which will ultimately be created with aluminum and copper.

Alice Vander Vennen artist stands with sculpture prototype

While like so many other creative attempts, it can be a huge, huge learning curve, the process has also been exhilarating and energizing. I’ve relied on expertise and help from friends who know more about wind power and force and curvatures than I. Perhaps it takes a village to raise a sculpture.

I’m confident that this piece is going to be spectacular at its new home on the shores of Lake Huron, where perhaps one winter day, someone will glance up from the curve left behind their skates on that frozen Great Lake, and see a familiar form.