Ice ForestChesterwood, 4 Williamsville Road, Stockbridge, MA 02162 On view through October 24, 2022 Curated by Cassandra Sohn Reception and gallery talk (in person): August 12, 2022, 5:00 – 7:00 pm
Ice Forest is a site-specific installation within Chesterwood’s Woodland Gallery. In Ice Forest, hundreds of translucent cast resin rose stems are suspended to create an icy forest. The crystalline stems, whose thorns are sharp like real roses, suggest a fairy tale world that is enticing yet dangerous. Although made of industrial materials, this forest evokes a natural place. Viewers can enter and move through the piece and also explore it through their imagination, perhaps recalling childhood memories.
The installation evolved through a process of improvisation during the artist’s weeklong residency at Chesterwood. The space was once a woodshed. Two of its walls are enclosed with glass, allowing sunlight to stream in and interact with the stems. They change from see-through to translucent, and also cast shadows. The ever-changing artwork transforms subtly throughout the day, and is specially lit at night. It exists in conversation between outdoors and indoors.
Beth Galston (SMVisS ’81) is known for creating immersive environments, sculptures, prints, and public art commissions that combine nature, technology and light. Her installations define space through the layering of materials—both ephemeral and physical. By collecting, reproducing, and re-presenting organic elements in her sculptures and her prints she creates forms which echo and amplify the cycles of the natural world.
Galston earned an advanced degree (SMVisS) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she was a Fellow at the Center for Advanced Visual Studies (CAVS) for five years. Prior to this she studied with sculptor Dale Eldred, earning her BFA at the Kansas City Art Institute, and BA from Cornell University. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including a Massachusetts Artists Fellowship in Sculpture/Installation, a two-year Bunting Institute Fellowship at Radcliffe, a National Endowment for the Arts InterArts award, a MacDowell Fellowship, a Yaddo Residency, and a funded Residency at Sculpture Space, Inc.
Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, most recently: “Unraveling Oculus,” Brattleboro Museum and Art Center, VT; “B3 Biennial of the Moving Image,” Frankfurt, Germany; “Avant Gardens,” Newport Art Museum, RI; “Horizons: As Above, So Below,” Portsmouth Arts and Cultural Center, VA; “Recasting Nature: Selected Sculptures,” Susquehanna Art Museum, Harrisburg, PA; “Branching Out: Trees as Art,” Peabody Essex Museum, MA, among others.
Recent public artworks include: “Floating Garden,” a large-scale luminous suspended sculpture, Everett, MA; “Sound Wave,” a computer-controlled light sculpture at Music City Center in Nashville, TN; “Prairie Grass,” a sculpture inspired by wild grasses in San Antonio, TX; and “Serpentine Fence,” a sculptural fence made of undulating chain link in Jamaica Plain, MA.
Galston’s installations have been reviewed in the New York Times, Art in America, Landscape Architecture Magazine, Sculpture Magazine, Boston Globe, Boston Herald, Art New England, artsMedia, artscope, and featured on the cover of Socrates Sculpture Park: 20th Anniversary book.