Kim Dickey’s white glazed figurative stoneware sculptures mounted on power coated steel are inspired by the animals and figures in architectural ornamentation created during the Medieval and Baroque periods.
“Those animals and figures tell stories,” says Dickey, a professor of art at the University of Colorado Boulder. “So often, they’re tucked away above our heads on the exterior of buildings or in the background in architectural settings. I’ve taken figures from the background and put them in the foreground so they aren’t overlooked.”
“Unshielded,” Dickey’s solo show at Peters Projects that opens on December 15, features a group of stoneware sculptures that stand tall and demand to be seen and appreciated.
The base of each sculpture takes the shape of a shield, with figures lifting off from them.
“The issue of vulnerability comes up in these works, which are also inspired by family mottos and coat of arms,” Dickey explains. “Families will claim animals as special to them, and yet very often, although the animals are portrayed as moral champions, they’re seen as somewhat fallible. Feelings of fallibility and vulnerability are something we all share.”
A graduate of Rhode Island School of Design who earned her masters of fine arts degree from Alfred University, Dickey was honored with the mid-career retrospective “Words Are Leaves” at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Denver from October 2016 through February 2017. She has exhibited her work in museums such as MASS MoCA (MA), the Everson Museum of Art (NY), the Museum of Arts and Design (NY) and the Contemporary Art Museum, Honolulu (HI).
Dickey has created a number of projects and installations for institutions in Colorado, including one for Denver’s Museum of Contemporary Art that features a group of objects reflecting the eclecticism of a garden collection, where each plant may represent a specific place, culture, culinary or pharmaceutical use.
“Unshielded” is one of four shows opening at Peters Projects on December 15. Also on exhibit are “Taming Nature,” a collection of past and recently completed paintings by Kenton Nelson that have a subtle voyeuristic undertone in common, “Population-Santa Fe,” a series of portraits by Ray Turner and “Photo Ceramica,” which features photos and photographs collaged on ceramic pieces by Peter Olson.