Last year artists Matt Burnett and Scott Fuller were tapped by the Town of Long Lake to create illuminated snow sculptures, but a warm March and diminished snowpack depleted snow supplies too quickly. On January 13, 2011, artists, Burnett and Fuller will finally unveil their vision as they begin construction of their exhibit “E-Lumination” in three locations around Long Lake, New York.
Artists Matt Burnett and Scott Fuller will be constructing a series of illuminated snow sculptures. The project, loosely titled “E-lumination,” will entail molded sculptural forms in snow with light projected on them. The work will be directed by the artists and will entail cooperation with local town resources including the Long Lake Highway Department and Parks and Recreation.
Burnett, who is a native of Long Lake and known for his paintings and exploration of Adirondack Wilderness, has been working with Fuller on several large scale outdoor installations in recent years. The pair first collaborated in 2006 at Mt. Desert Island with kinetic sculpture for an outdoor invitational (Non-Sentient Free Range Organisms) , and then again in 2008 at Saranac Lake’s winter carnival (Community Spiral) with a large scale illuminated ice structure.
The two artists, who met at Maine College of Art’s MFA program, have both long been interested in working with natural processes and environments. Fuller, who has been involved with a wide range of projects (from wood fired kilns in Hawaii to sculptures cut out of sheet metal from designs created on the computer), has really taken to the snow since moving to the north east (he lives in Poland, Maine). The several “fire and ice” public works that Fuller accomplished in the city of Portland (see photograph) are what lead to their associated with the Palace building crew in Saranac Lake. “We have plenty of winter, plenty of snow and plenty of ice; rather then complaining about it and waiting it out for half the year, I love the idea of celebrating what is unusual and beautiful about winter.” says Burnett. “I have been working with ice for some time, there is so much complexity and power in the way ice and snow form and dominate this time of year.”
Both artists have shown their work regionally and internationally. Fuller was most recently a finalist for a sculpture contest at the Bejing Olympics, where his design for a monumental sculpture toured China. “I really enjoy working with Scott, “ says Burnett, “We always challenge each other to work outside of our comfort zone, he’s really fun and reliable to work with, and our collaboration has resulted in some of the best work we have accomplished.”
The project will take place in several locations and will feature some imagery relating to local history. Artist Matt Burnett talked about the close influence of his hometown on his professional career as an artist. “It’s in all of my paintings” he explains, “I owe my success to the inspiration of the Adirondack wilderness and also the support of my family and hometown community.” This project is a way of my giving back to the community that has given me so much. Burnett explained that some of the imagery shown in “E-lumination” will relate to local history. There will be a prize for people able to name all of the locations and faces projected over the week long project, so Long Lake is encouraged to keep their eyes peeled…especially long timers! The projections will likely be in place in time for the Long Lake Winter Carnival.
Installation is tentatively slated for Thursday, January 13th and 14th at various location in and around town. In case of inclement weather, or a January thaw, look for the alternative date, January 20th for installation. Curious on-lookers and members of the public are encouraged to attend while Matt and Scott build forms and install the projection equipment with assistance from the Long Lake Highway Department.
Once installed it will be best seen at night and members of the community are encouraged to view it every night as the images will change. The Town of Long Lake will be sponsoring a contest to identify people, events or locations shown in the slides. The exhibit will run for a full week with official “opening” on Friday, January 14th to kick off Winter Carnival.
This project is made possible in part from support from the following organizations: The Arts Council for the Northern Adirondacks, New York State Foundation for the Arts, The Adirondack Museum, The Town of Long Lake, Gillis Reality and with public funds from the New York State Council of the Arts Decentralization Regrant Program. In Hamilton County the Decentralization Program is administered by the Adirondack Lakes Center for the Arts in Blue Mountain Lake.