Digital prints and installations by Diana Hoover and woodworking items from Joseph Hoover make up the newest exhibit at the Scarabocchio Art Museum in Stevens Point.
The exhibition, “Water & Wood: Work by Diana K.B. Hoover and Joseph Hoover,” opened in late October and will run through November 25.
This exhibition marks the first time that Joseph and Diana have shown their work together. While they pursue different themes and utilize different media, they both share an appreciation of graceful form, nuanced composition and an affinity for the elements.
A designer and artist, Diana creates pieces that are grounded in a sense of place and her love of the environment. The digital prints and installations in this show are from her Lake Michigan Song series. She collaborated with Joseph to create the painted contoured shelves for this work.
Joseph is a furniture maker and a woodworker whose talents include carving, turning and the restoration of antique furniture. He has a deep respect for the woodworking craft, and his knowledge of historical styles are reflected in the pieces included in this exhibition.
But talking about art isn’t half as interesting as hearing about the inspiration, content and forms from the people who created the art. So let’s hear from the artists themselves.Artist Statement:
Diana K.B. Hoover
“To know a place deeply takes time. It requires attentiveness, observing and learning the nature of the residents and the stories of those who have come before you. Finding a sense of belonging to place comes with participation in communal activities, serving and strengthening connections to community. In this way we are shaped by a place and in turn, the place is shaped by us. With enough time, our relationship to place changes and the place becomes home.
“For me the Western Great Lakes region defines ‘home.’ The people, customs, wildlife, plants, trees, soil, rocks and fresh water are familiar. For many generations my blood relatives and spiritual kinfolk have lived in the region that includes Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan. I grew up moving from place to place, [from] Air Force base to Air Force base, all over the country and in Central America. Even so, I still have deep and abiding affiliation to this region, the waters, the woodlands and farmlands.
“A number of pieces in this show are from my series, Lake Michigan Song: Connecting to Place. Each of the print installations combines a framed digital collage with a contoured shelf representing the topography of the local shore. On each shelf is a glass bottle containing water, sand and stones from the specific location depicted in the print. The photographs document places around the northern parts of Lake Michigan. Layered onto the photos are historic maps, schematic diagrams, charts and data sets related to the site.
“Other pieces in this exhibition reflect my interest in visual communication, representation and identity. In decon-structing commercial graphics, I want to explore how sometimes erroneous associations are assumed and how [the] audience interprets visual elements.
“Stevens Point, Wisconsin, has been my home-place for twelve years now. I am happy to have the opportunity to exhibit my work with my husband’s and to feel a sense of belonging to this vibrant community.”Artist Statement:
“Building furniture to order and restoring fine antiques often turns my research inquiries toward architecture, the very soul and basis of my art. Completion and delivery of my work does not end the little inspirations and impulses that research has bred and which litter the cognitive corridors and crowd my sketch books. Likewise, the workshop floor is often strewn with dusty remnants of daily activity, lovely but too short, narrow or too thin to be of use for the project at hand. The boxes in this exhibition are an effort to salvage these surplus notions and materials into forms that may be useful, instructive and, I hope, a pleasure to look at.
“The practical aspect of craft often demands long hours at the drafting table pushing and pulling the lines in two dimensions and living with just the idea of the plain form and the masses that make it. Of course I find the grain patterns of wood species beguiling—a burled figure roiling beneath a gloss finish or fiery rooster tails of mahogany crotch wood paired within the door frames of a high style cabinet—but the notion steals in that a more serene composition might be had at no expense to its visual interest without the distracting figures of natural surface.
“The vermillion cupboard on display is such an effort. It is very much inspired in the same fashion as the boxes, although at much greater cost in every sense. A unifying layer of paint brings all the line and mass into focus. The effects of a variety of lighting throughout the day highlight aspects of the surface that a few hours earlier or later may have gone unnoticed. Additionally the cupboard indulges my genealogical fixation on the material culture of the Pennsylvania Germans.”
A reception with the artists will be held Friday, November 7, from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm. The Scarabocchio Art Museum is located at 800 Main Street in Stevens Point. Museum hours are Tuesday through Friday from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. To learn more about the museum, visit www.uwsp.edu/sam.