Retrospective of work by Sandy Graham
December 9, 2011– January 29, 2012
Opening reception: Sunday, December 11th from 2-4pm
Wood turning was far more than ‘just a hobby’ for Graham; he approached the craft as an artist and continually challenged himself to learn new techniques, create new designs and further develop his means of creative expression. Graham’s process was meticulous and detailed; his notebooks and sketchbooks reference his broad range of source material – books and journals, conversation with colleagues, observation of art and nature, both at home and during his extensive travels – and how he incorporated these ideas into his own vision.
Graham’s approach included an intensely personal relationship with his chosen material. Many of the pieces of wood that Graham turned had their own recorded pedigree; both the human and the natural history of the Niagara region is captured in his work. Individual land-owners often brought him wood from cherished trees that had graced their property and in at least one case the beam from a historic barn was given new life in his workshop. Later, once Graham had allowed time to carefully cure the wood and his own artistry to find its ideal form, these individuals would receive an exquisite vessel in thanks for their contribution
Wood turning requires a unique combination of artistic vision and technical expertise, as well as a deep knowledge and love of wood. Graham produced many types of turnings, from rigorously functional to exquisitely artistic, but in all of them his sense of design, his sensitivity to sculptural form, and above all his love of wood are clearly evident.
This exhibition of fine woodworking by the late Sandy Graham is a fascinating display of one craftsman’s long and complex relationship with his chosen material. Graham was well known to many Grimsby residents as a founding partner of the Grimsby Animal Hospital and a well respected practitioner of veterinary medicine in the community, but he is equally applauded for his magnificent work as a fine craftsman.