Sculptor Allan Packer responds to the theme Beginnings in a new body of work that examines evolution and plays with natural forms from the small (snail) to the large (solar system).
Titled An Array of Essence, this new project is inspired by a recent trip to Playa Grande, Costa Rica where Packer and a scientist were looking at snails with transmitters on their backs to see where and how far they would travel. Further study of other snail species revealed the whole ecosystem of who devours who and the calculated yet randomness of the whole existence of the characters within the parameters of this habitat.
Packer will share his process in TPR, from the first drawings that lead to 3-D models and eventually to the finished work. Visit this webpage for frequent updates on the progress of the work, or come to TPR during open hours on Wednesdays between 11am-2pm to see the work in person.
From the Artist:
An idea is a seed sprouting into a process that ultimately becomes something smaller than a blip – or a force that affects an entire planet. Made from snap-together paintings, fittings, armatures, sculpture, theatrical lighting, scale models and cutout drawings, this work will evolve from a seed into objects, which will culminate in a short, stop action animation of the metamorphosis of a snail.
Envisioning parallel lines of thought, the one we consciously recognize and the actual electro-impulse stimulus that occurs in our body I endeavor to undertake the awareness of the correlation of the minuteness of scale of the snail compared with the infinite scale of the Galaxy.
About the Artist:
Allan Packer was born in 1956 in Windsor Ontario, Canada. After graduating from the University of Windsor, Packer journeyed north to the high arctic community of Cape Dorset with Terry Ryan in 1980. This appointment was to implement a working etching print shop, which became the vibrant and internationally recognized Dorset Fine Arts. There he met Inuit artists Kananginak, Pitseolak and Pudlo Pudlat. Departing the Arctic, Packer traveled to Paris to study with Stanley William Hayter at Atelier 17. Hayter was a scientist and it is here Packer began to experiment with mathematics in his work. The first result of this is A dodecahedron – Time Machine (2007, Kohler Factories, Wisconsin).
In 1986 Packer moved to New York City and began using books as a medium, creating his first sculpture, The Poet, (1988) a portrait of the poet Barbara Barg (above image). Packer then abolished the use of canvas completely and painted with books, creating the piece Forming and Thinking, (1992, Denver Art Museum.)
Leaving New York after 14 years and settling into Seattle, Packer gained recognition for his wry, politically charged, large, cast plastic sculptures, such as The Bride (2000, private collection). This body of work received awards including, two major Canada Council grants, Artist Trust Fellowship and GAP grants including residencies at Kohler Arts/Industry, Banff Centre for the Arts and the International Studio Curatorial Program, New York.
Packer continues to explore ideas of the metamorphosis of biological matter, often using mechanical paintings to represent natural transformation.