DAVID HUTSON, MEMORY & DESIRE: A PERSONAL EXPLORATION OF NEON ART, PAST AND PRESENT
2018 Kranzberg Exhibition Series / SEPTEMBER 28, 2018–January 13, 2019
Whitaker Foundation Gallery, Adam Aronson Fine Arts Center / Way Field
Curated by Dana Turkovic and supported by PNC Arts Alive
In Rudi Stern’s book “Let there be Neon” he outlines the magic of neon, weaving high art with
a handcraft relegated mostly to the electric-sign trade. Stern recognizes the potential for the
medium, beyond the logos: “neon is sculptural, architectural and when done right, is highly
aesthetic.” Recognizing its popular appeal, Laumeier Sculpture Park’s 2018 exhibition with neon artist and sign historian David Hutson will also showcase two large scale outdoor neon works along with his extensive collection of vintage neon signs alongside and in conversation with
a checklist of about 15 neon sculptures from Hutson’s current body of work.
Installed in the Aronson Fine Arts Center, Hutson’s work will be part of the 15th iteration of the Kranzberg Exhibition Series, a longstanding annual program that supports the development of
exhibitions and large-scale sculptural commissions for regional artists. The mixture of new work by Hutson and restored vintage signs will activate imaginations through this decidedly retro,
yet strangely contemporary medium of bendy gaseous typography.
HOW WE SEE: THE MATERIALITY OF COLOR
march 2–June 30, 2019
Whitaker Foundation Gallery, Adam Aronson Fine Arts Center / Outdoor Galleries
Curated by Dana Turkovic
We can understand color in an approximate sequence of Newton’s spectrum: dark red, red,
orange, yellow, green, blue, dark blue, violet. From a distance this distinction of colors shimmers like a rainbow if made from light or is solid like a candy if made from an opaque material. Spread out across a floor or composed in quadrants on a canvas or isolated in so many individual items, color is not a self-contained sculptural object. Its experience invites comparison with epistemological and metaphysical speculation. We know what a color does to excite us but it is hard to tell what it is. Why do we even perceive it? These sculptor’s colored materials, however, are the product of modern technology in material sciences like biology, chemistry and physics. Their very choice, transferred and arranged for a museum context, does more than show that the artist’s creations have beauty, but rather suggests that the artist’s production of endless color variations is not unlike nature’s manner of reproduction.