Exhibit: September 8 – 27, 2013
Jacksonville, NC August 29, 2013 – September, The Council for the Arts highlights local artist Stephen Zawistowski. In today’s world of mass-produced, machine-made products there is a craving for custom designed and handcrafted works which embrace quality and craftsmanship. His handmade objects appeal to those looking for something truly unique.
In “The Art of Nature” Stephen has created pieces which showcase the marriage of form and function, which is so obvious in the natural world. He starts to create a new piece by researching the natural design of a plant to do service to its botanical features. He then determines how to make a hard and immobile material, like steel, yield the shapes and designs needed in order to present the best rendition of the life in the plants.
All of the plants in this display are native to our region. He has not attempted to copy them, but rather to reflect their beauty. Each piece starts as raw steel and then transitions into a life-like reflection of the original.
The wood he is using is Cyprus. This Cyprus tree was growing in eastern North Carolina before the first European settlers arrived. The tree fell, not by the hand of man, but by an act of nature, into a coastal North Carolina river in where it stayed for decades. The sand and debris carried by the moving water scoured the sides and ends of the wood. The natural chemicals in the water permeated the fibers and gradually staining them to a patina that only time can achieve. Stephen states: “I first saw the 24 foot trunk after it was removed from the water and allowed to dry in a farmer’s field. Even then, I could appreciate the special qualities of this piece. The log was milled and moved to my studio where I slowly continued the drying process over the last several years. I waited for the right project to come along. Using this wood on anything other than a unique piece of furniture would be a loss. I hope you agree, celebrating the art of nature, is the perfect use of such a beautiful piece of natural history.”
The Opening Reception will be Sunday September 8th from 2:00 – 5:00pm.