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John Grade: Middle Fork


August 30 – November 15, 2014

Friends Gallery

Through his large-scale installations and site-specific works, John Grade (American, b. 1970) explores issues of irrevocable change and natural disintegration.  He is recognized for his use of organic motifs and materials in artworks that seek to understand the intrinsic language of nature.

Middle Fork continues the artist’s exploration of natural deterioration in a new work created from the casting of a 100 ft tall live old-growth tree. A shell of the tree has been assembled from ¼ inch perforated cedar, which is suspended horizontally in the gallery. From its 10 ft diameter trunk, 12 – 15 ft limbs fork from the trunk offering a new perspective about trees, their relationship to humans, and the relationship of the sculpture to its original source in the landscape.  Middle Fork includes additional smaller works by Grade. 

Middle Fork is presented in conjunction with the Western Cast Iron Art Alliance Conference scheduled September 24 – 28 in Laramie, for which Grade is the keynote speaker.  Hosted by the UW Art Department, the conference will feature iron pours, workshops, demonstrations, and lectures in addition to Grade’s exhibition.

Grade has an extensive exhibition record and has received numerous awards, including the 2013 Arts Innovator Award from the Artist Trust Foundation, the Arlene Schnitzer Prize from the Portland Museum of Art, and a Pollack-Krasner Foundation grant.  Residencies have included the Kohler Arts/Industry Program, MacDowell Colony, and Djerassi Foundation. He lives and works in Seattle.

Public Programs:

Art Talk: Thursday, September 25, 6:30 pm, Visual Arts Building lobby

Gallery Walk Through: Friday, September 26, 3 pm

Presented in conjunction with the Western Cast Iron Art Conference, Sept. 24 – 28, 2014

                  • John Grade: Middle Fork and the Western Cast Iron Art Conference are funded in part by Rocky Mountain Power, National Advisory Board for the UW Art Museum Endowment, UW Art Department, UW Art Museum Gala Fund, Wyoming Cultural Trust Fund, and the Wyoming Arts Council through the Wyoming State Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts


Left: A series of photographs shows the process of creating the sculpture Middle Fork, by Seattle artist John Grade

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Art Museum

Hours: Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

Closed Sunday & Monday

Admission: Free

Centennial Complex

2111 East Willett Drive

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: (307) 766-6622


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