Get off the typical art gallery circuit. Energize an unused space. Create an immersive viewing experience for the viewer. Inspire.
That’s just some of what Charleston-based visual artist John Duckworth wants to accomplish with his art, and his new pop-up gallery at The Wedge is just his latest attempt. The show opens to the public on Saturday with a reception from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Visitors will see that Duckworth’s photographs and paintings are striking enough on their own. His photographs of landscape abstraction sooth, while his layered Buddha paintings call for a consideration of Eastern religion. His multimedia installation/performance piece includes looping video and music that will play as he sits and meditates.
The abstract photography work references the familiar while remaining unspecific. “To me, that’s the way memory works,” says Duckworth. It’s that element of memory that he hopes to tap into with his viewers.
With his paintings, Duckworth is drawing on own experience with meditation, “the most nourishing” thing he says he’s done in recent years.
“It’s helped me realize that the turning of my mind isn’t all that I am, and in fact it has opened a sort of flexibility for me,” he says. “Meditation has helped me gain insight into my words, choices and actions and takes me away from wanting to know everything right now.”
The location, the former workspace of Wedge founder John Payne, was last occupied by metal-worker Tina Councell of Iron Maiden Studios. It is located at the far end of the dock from Wedge Brewing. Andrew Simpson, who has top-notch connections in the film/photography world and works as a location scout and photo shoot producer, helped connect Duckworth with Eddie Dewey of The Wedge for the pop-up. Simpson, of The Bollocks Production LLC, lives in Asheville and owns some of Duckworth’s work.
“The timing of it just worked out,” said Simpson, who said he’s excited for Saturday’s opening event and the potential for the months-long exhibition.