Gregory Barry

MFA ’20 Fine Arts Low-Residency

The region of wooded landscape where I live informs and influences my practice. My sculptures utilize resourceful materials and acknowledge both natural and human-made environments. I have been drawn to the forest and lumber, especially its manufactured intent used historically and currently in architecture. Materially, I visit local residential construction and home renovation sites to collect structural lumber cut offs of pine, spruce and fir. Each wood scrap plays a role in my intuitive process, which employs conscious spontaneity for arranging and manifesting the evolution and growth of each sculpture. These pieces I make strive to restore value and give voice to the discarded lumber. Likewise, the work suggests narratives from previous homeowners and builders, to the industrial labor forces who harvest and manufacture lumber, to the diverse life forms who once dwelled in the forests, and the sentient beings who feed the air, soil and water. Each of these connections has been part of my language since I was young. Reflecting upon my childhood conjures experiences where I had built structures and made objects similarly by collecting wood scraps much like I do today. It is important that my work intentionally reveals the “as-is” unaltered truths of each wood scrap’s color, size, natural and hand-made marks. These characteristics invite the viewer to elicit their own individual memories, senses and reactions with my work.

Sculptor and educator Gregory Barry resides in a small rural village where the wooded landscape and waterways that surround his home and studio harmonize the fusion of his practice, teaching and family life. Gregory earned his BFA in drawing and painting, and proceeded to acquire his M.Ed., M.A. and most recently his MFA. His thirty-year career in public education has inspired young people to explore and develop their own artistic and creative voices.