Lightweight sculpture show on display at BVU

Tuesday, September 17, 2002

The Buena Vista University Art Gallery will be hosting a show of lightweight scultpure by Priscilla Sage.

The show begins September 19 at the gallery in the Forum building on camus. Everyone is invited to view the works, free of charge.

"I am endlessly fascinated by color and form and the relationships between them. Three-dimensional forms and color are complex phenomena and become more so when the forms start moving so that light plays on different surfaces," Sage said. "My sculptures are lightweight, designed to move in air currents so the colors make that sensuous slide from convex to concave or turn from a cool exterior to a rich vibrant interior.

"Although I work on a large scale, my inspiration comes from the structure of natural forms that can be as small as mosses, as sinuous as the DNA helix, as vast as images from the Hubbell telescope, or as personal as the human body."

The underlying theme of the sculpture is the relationship of humans and nature. "There are deep and powerful connections between ourselves and everything else; the longer we look the more we see how our existence and the nature of the universe are part of one consistent picture," Sage said.

To begin a work, she decides on the value and intensity of each color, then glazes silver Mylar fabric with layers of acrylic paints. The design is drawn or stenciled over that. The silver underneath influences the color, and the line work creates richness and illusions on the surface.

Finally the fabric is cut and stitched to its polyurethane padding. The flat, padded forms are folded and pleated; the way the wedges come together, intersect, and connect creates the form. At this point the piece is basically finished. Each piece hangs from a single point and is engineered to fall out from itself with no internal supports so that it can present different aspects and colors as it floats. The materials and process are the same for the wall relief pieces.

"I love the interactions of people walking through my sculptures. Art is an expression of the human spirit, and viewers will react to the changing shapes and colors in the context of their own humanity," Sage said.