Dark Garden an Installation by Linda Huey

January 30, 2016 through January 8, 2017
McCain Family Gallery

An opening reception for Linda Huey will be held on Gallery Night, Friday, March 11, 2016 from 7 to 10 p.m. Linda will also be presenting an inside look at her exhibit to Erie Art Museum members at a members-only session at 6:15 p.m. prior to Gallery Night.

Linda Huey’s Dark Garden warns against a somber future. Dark fairies and decrepit gnomes peer out between the stems of gigantic plants, and organic forms sprout from beds of fossilized junk. The garden shows us the dire path of a society that is more concerned with consumer goods than the environment. It reflects the consequences of disposable culture and pollution.

Huey approaches this message in a subtle way that requires investigation. At first glance, the towering plant forms loom from their planters, and it really feels like a walk in a fantasy garden, but when looking closer, the flora reveals lengths of rebar and nails mixed in with the clay.  The rebar become their stems and the nails their seeds. There are impressions of computer parts and junk in the surface of the clay. Each plant bears some mark of industry. In the center of the exhibit, a large white sphere seems to hover like a planet or moon. Upon looking closer, the sphere seems to be composed of trash. Perhaps it is a warning of what our own planet could become: a lifeless orb of refuse.

Dark Garden juxtaposes nature with manmade objects. Clay is a material that associated with the earth, while metal element typically reference progress and industry. Huey is very interested in the possibilities of firing metal parts directly into the clay. The result of this process is cracking in the surface of clay. Huey uses these cracks to further convey decay in her Dark Garden.

Linda Huey grew up near Albany, New York. Her father was a chemist and her mother was a piano teacher. She grew up playing piano, gardening, and making her own toys. Huey feels this emphasis on using her hands influenced her to become an artist. Living and working as a full time studio artist in both rural western New York State and Boston, she teaches workshops and has a studio gallery open by appointment. Her work has been published in numerous books and national magazines and is included in public and private collections. Linda received a Masters Degree in Ceramic Art from Alfred University in 1993 and is represented in Massachusetts by Clark Gallery.

Click here to download a digital brochure of Dark Garden.


Excerpt from April Artscope, 2016

A focal point of Linda Huey’s Dark Garden is the giant white orb rising above her ceramic, floral landscape. Its celestial beauty captivates audiences upon initial impression, but closer inspection reveals a surface scarred by industrial impact. Casting cool shadows upon the warmly glowing garden, this mysterious planet’s future remains unclear.

Excerpt from August Artscope, 2016

Linda Huey’s Dark Garden exposes modernity’s impact on nature. Clay and metal flowers grow out of a hostile earth in which even bearers of good fortune, such as gnomes and fairies, have become disenchanted. By combining organic and industrial materials, Huey explores the tension between the natural and manufactured worlds. Beautiful and disturbing, Huey’s work reflects our society’s tenuous relationship to Mother Earth.