Visitors to the Seattle Art Museum can’t miss John Grade’s largest sculpture to date: an enormous wooden structure in the shape of a tree, over a hundred feet long and hanging from the lobby ceiling. Grade has made his mark on the Pacific Northwest with art that recreates—and coexists with—the natural world. He has assembled large teams of helpers to build structures that are then intended to degrade and return to the environment, such as his wooden tower at MOHAI which is taller than the building, weighs 11,000 pounds, and took 10,000 hours to assemble. He is joined onstage by returning Town Hall guest Gary Fagin, Gage Academy’s artistic director. Together the two share images of John’s work, and find out what drives him to take on such colossal projects.
John Grade works with his studio team to create large-scale site-specific immersive sculptural installations inspired by changing geology and ecology in the natural world. Impermanence is central to his work, along with kinetics and relationships between the natural world and architecture. John is the recipient of the 2010 Metcalf Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a Tiffany Foundation Award, three Andy Warhol Foundation Grant Awards, two Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grants, the 2011 Arlene Schnitzer Prize from the Portland Art Museum, and the 2013 Arts Innovator Award from Artist Trust.
Gary Faigin is a leading proponent of realist painting in the Northwest. His book The Artist’s Complete Guide to Facial Expression has sold over 175,000 copies, been translated into eight languages and been reprinted 24 times. In 2014 Seattle’s Frye Museum hosted a retrospective exhibition on his work, and he currently holds a seat on the board of directors at the Cascadia Museum of Art in Edmonds, WA.
Presented by Town Hall Seattle and Gage Academy of Art as part of the Arts and Culture series.