Alice Vandervennen

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Assembled secrets

Posted by on Mar 23, 2021 in Blog | 0 comments

Spring clean up means cleaning out the bird houses. There’s a sweet sadness to see the eggs left, wondering why they were abandoned last summer. The two little eggs give hints of the wren building a nest, working with what’s at hand — including a blue thread, woven deep in the warmth of it. It was the summer of 2020 and the birds of the field didn’t notice there was a pandemic, but like them, so many of us were making do with what was close to home. I gave an online workshop, built with the promise that anyone could join in using anything they had; no need to leave the house for supplies. Finding myself close to home rather than travelling to art shows all summer, I dug into experimenting with wild material and land art with my friend Leslie, weaving grape vines into globes. It’s what we do as artists, right? Working with what we have. Layers on layers. There’s mystery to it...

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It’s never a straight line

Posted by on Mar 3, 2021 in 2008 and prior Selected, Blog | 0 comments

  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. 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...

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