On a sunny Tuesday morning, two distinct clusters of objects had started to form along the walkway at Green Spring Station.
One held an assortment of surprising, uncanny items—shoes, plants, sports equipment, and, probably most eye-catching, a mannequin wearing a corset with a pineapple on her head. What united them was color—all had been spray painted black.
The other consisted of a fibrous, textured rope, colored white with bursts of jewel tones woven throughout, and a string of delicate white lights. Soon, they would both be hung from the rafters, garland-style.
These were the makings of two temporary sculptures by students at the Maryland Institute College of Art. Their fiber and sculpture course led by Susie Brandt had been selected to be part of Maryland Art Place’s IMPACT program, which aims to reach broader audiences by bringing the works of living artists into the public.
As part of the program, students used items from merchants at Green Spring Station, a collection of locally-owned shops, services, and restaurants. That obviously accounts for the unique objects that would comprise the black sculpture, but, surprisingly, also in the garland-type work—the pops of color and texture in the rope are from 50 yards of material including a bridal gown and tulle, said Astrid Albert, a senior fiber arts major who is part of the class.
The twinkling lights, carefully sautered by another student, enhance it even more, and lend a holiday spirit, Albert said. “The lights will create even more sparkle, and it will be even more beautiful.”
And, it leads viewers to the next sculpture, which is about structure and form, as much is the other is about texture and light. Each object is distinct, yet united by its color, said junior fiber arts major Joseph Malson, and there are also pops of color from layered wrapping paper that add dimension to the piece.
Though Malson’s team had just started piecing together the sculpture, he mentioned that dimension was another aspect they wanted to highlight. They wanted the work to grab your attention, “to make the objects into something you can walk around,” Malson said.
It appeared that goal had already been achieved Tuesday morning, as customers stopped in their shopping to gaze at the developing sculptures.