Tuesday, November 16, 2010

HIVE Exhibition

Telling Bees by Denise Stringer Davis

Above Paintings are top: Entomphily and Zoophily: Birds and Bees, etc by Deanna Wood
Next down: Vacant by Jennie Kimbrough
Next down: Decline by Hayes Parker

Sara Cooney's work

Work by Suzanne Shield Polk
Close up of Collections, collaborative book by Denise Stringer Davis

Above and below are images from the HIVE exhibition at the Cole Art Center in Nacogdoches this month. We had good attendance at the reception and panel discussion on Saturday. This project was conceived to promote a greater awareness of the importance of the honeybee to our society and create discussion about  causes for the current problem with the bee population called Colony Collapse Disorder, referred to as CCD.  
A major part of the exhibition is the wall of hexagon-shaped  Encaustic paintings by Houston and DallasWAX  member artists. Content of the work needed to pertain to bees in some way.  We have Laura Tyler's film Sister Bee, streaming in the gallery. A collaborative accordion-fold book conceived and assembled by Denise Stringer Davis with pages made by friends, family and artist members is also on display. Many of the members have bee keeping in their family history. I found a old hardback copy of C.C. Miller's Fifty Years Among the Bees in my dad's things after he passed. He had stopped keeping bees a long while back and given all his equipment to another family member but for some reason kept the book.  It is on display  as well.   Below is Denise's Honey Dreams which sits on a pedestal in the gallery. Honey is in the mouth.  

The panel discussion was a lively conversation with good audience participation. Marie Kucyen, president of the Pineywood Beekeepers Association presented interesting facts about our dependence on bees for much of our food supply. She cautioned that  even with the recent news about identifying the cause of CCD, there are still questions that have not been answered surrounding this disorder. There is still suspicions that  certain pesticides lower the immune systems of the bees so that they are unable to fight off the affects of the two suspected causes. 
Panel member Melanie Brakie gave suggestions for garden plants that bees and other pollinators love as well as good suggestions on better products to get rid of garden pests that don't harm bees nor the environment. Dr. David Kulhavy was very enthusiastic about the coming together of art and science. He spoke of his book A Forest Insect Alphabet which has just been printed and will be on exhibition this week. Animated, he read/sang some of the songs that he wrote in the book about the wiggle dance of the bees. There is more about his book at the bottom of this post.

Honey Dreams by Denise Stringer Davis
Honey Dreams by Denise Stringer Davis

HIVE exhibition L to R at far end L work by Sara Cooney, Deanna Wood and Denise Stringer Davis
L to R: Collections, Denise Stringer Davis, and other works in HIVE

Pollen Puffers by Larry Kitchens
Old book from Gwen Plunkett's collection handed down from her Dad. Book is an original copy of C.C. Miller's Fifty Years Among the Bees.
L to R Collections, Far left: Denise Stringer Davis; Untitled by Hayes Parker; Vacant by Jennie Kimbrough; God's Nectar I and II and Queen's Lair (A Room of Her Own) by Gwendolyn Plunett
Swarm I and II and Star's Tears by Gwendolyn Plunkett; Harmony  and Heartbroken by Carolyn Fox-Hearn and further down works by Linda Walker
Diaspora, Empty Nest Syndrome and Cast Aside by Linda Walker
L and R -  Harmony; Center-Heartbroken by Carolyn Fox Hearn

Panel: L to R- Gwendolyn Plunkett,  Marie Kocyan,  Dr. David Kulhavy,  and Melinda Brakie.

In the picture above, Dr. Kulhavy is holding up a copy of his latest project,  A Forest Insect Alphabet, a book consisting fifty-one original woodcuts and text printed by LaNana Creek Press. This book is a result of an SFA faculty research grant awarded to Charles Jones, retired professor of art and director of SFA's fine arts press, and Dr. Kulhavy. It was printed and bound by hand during the summer and fall of 2010. The 72-page book includes woodcut prints of forest insects created by Charles Jones and descriptions and texts are written by Dr. Kulhavy.  Included in each book is a compact disc of songs that are the actual texts set to music by Nacogdoches musician Miki Lynn. Click here to read more. 

The book and 26 selected framed pages will be exhibited Wednesday, Nov. 17 in Griffith Gallery on the SFA campus. 

Q is for Woodcut by Charles Jones

You can see more four more pages of images of the HIVE exhibition on my Flickr page here. 

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