Transcendent process–a reply

Post by Peter Kinney

[Editor’s note: I invited Peter Kinney to give a second point of view–see Sun. Nov. 23 post, “Real estate update”–on Joe Plageman’s work at Highwire Gallery.]

plagemansummertoyofastumpHave you ever tried to make a drawing with a black gum leaf while walking in the forest? I would give up. Joe doesn’t. The unusual burgundy from this leaf is his unique discovery, as are the subtle violets from the Asiatic day flower, and the rich umbers from a variety of tree marrows, and many others (shown, Summer Toy of a Stump).

The materials are an exploration, but more, they reveal a unique mystic’s communion with nature, the forest, and especially the MacAurthur Woods, one of the last stands of old growth in our area.

There is movement, a sense of growth and flight, an airiness to the spirit world Joe has created (“Great Mulberry Moth”). In the vegetation drawings (eg., “Spring Dawn Meeting”), I feel as if looking up at light filtering through trees with squinted eyes: evanescent forms and spirits emerge from shadows or the blinding light of the sun.

plagemanmanandbeastandbirdEven if the colors shift, their hues will remain unique, tinted with the light of a spirit who feels deeply about his materials and vision(shown, Man and Beast and Bird).

There [was] a good video in the Gallery created by John Van Zant that gives more about Joe’s process. John’s videos about Joe and other Highwire artists and musical events can be seen on Comcast Cable in some areas.

–Artist Peter Kinney is a friend of Joe Plageman as well as a fellow founding member of Highwire Gallery