Compton Nocturne (1999) by Alison Saar is a highly visible piece of sculpture at the Weatherspoon Art Gallery. This sculpture piece is representative of Saar's work. The the female figure features prominently in LA born Saar's art, relevant to her theme of personal and cultural identity. Her work is known for its balance of strength and tenderness (reference). In the above sculpture, the harsh coldness of glass and tin contrast with the warmth of wood, paint, and tar. The translucence of of the glass protruding from the hair warms up the image of the figure exposed to the elements. The piece looks especially cold this time of year in the harsh light of the trees-without-leaves in the background.
Teachers visiting the Weatherspoon use Saar's piece, in conjunction with Judith Shea's Urban Francis ( in the back courtyard) to help develop creative and critical thinking skills and perceptual awareness in their students* Saar's recumbent figure contrasts sharply with Shea's standing and fully clothed sculpture (see here and closeup here).
If you are local, we hope you remember what a wonderful resource Greensboro has in the Weatherspoon. Not only is it in our backyard, the entrance is free, as is parking. One exhibit closes this weekend and two open up. So, there is plenty to see today and there will be plenty different to see next week. Start your new year on the right path by getting out to enjoy some art. For free!
* see a sample lesson plan here.