Surely the beasts of "Where the Wild Things Are" will inhabit their new homes once they're completed at the Hui No'eau Visual Arts Center in Makawao.
Massive sculptures, made of sticks, step out of storybooks, the imagination and the endless creativity of world-renowned environmental sculptor Patrick Dougherty. As the September artist in residence at the Hui, Dougherty will lead participants in constructing Maui's own site-specific installation from samplings of invasive trees.
Combining carpentry skills with a love of nature, North Carolina-based artist Dougherty began learning about primitive building techniques and experimenting with tree saplings as construction material in 1980. Small works and single pieces on conventional pedestals grew into monumental site-specific installations. To date, Dougherty has built more than 200 of these large-scale pieces around the world and received numerous awards, including a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant and NEA Fellowship. Princeton Architectural Press in 2009 published a major survey of Dougherty and his work in "Stickwork."
“Call of the Wild” by Hui No‘eau Visual Art Center’s artist in residence Patrick Dougherty
Locally, volunteers may get involved in the free community art project, already being hailed by organizers as the largest public art piece on the island, by signing up on the Hui website and attending workdays to collaborate on the exhibition in motion. Dougherty's sculpture plan requires the help of dozens of community volunteers.
On Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, volunteers collected sticks by hiking into protected land areas, cutting leaves and twigs from trees and bundling them by the truckload to transport to the Hui.
During the building phases- starting today through Sept. 22 - participants will help build the schaffolding and design the sculpture, among other tasks.
The final sculpture will mark the launch of the Hui No'eau Environmental Art Garden: Ho'ololi, a new public art program that aims to raise awareness about Hawaii's endangered ecosystems.
Today through Sunday: Design / build part I
Monday through Sept. 16: Design / build part II
Sept. 19 through 22: Design / build part III
Tuesday: Meet and greet the artist, enjoy a meal and experience the live exhibition. Call 572-6560 for prices and to reserve a spot.
Sept. 15: Free artist lecture and panel discussion moderated by Maui Non-Profit Director's Association Radio Show host Keith Wolter.
Sept. 22: Sculpture preview and intimate dinner with the artist. Seating limited. Call 572-6560 for prices and to reserve a spot.
Sept. 23: Free sculpture blessing and opening celebration.
Ongoing: Classes with the artist; field trips to meet the artist and watch the exhibition at work; and more
INFO: Sign up to volunteer or for more details, visit huinoeau.com/happenings/events/2011-artist-in-residence/