By: Doreen DeBoth
Looking at the sculptures of Eugene Cunningham, the viewer will find themselves engaged with something familiar that has been transformed into something that is not. Materials and found objects from the world of labor and industry inform his art and are found in local salvage yards. Unusual shapes and surfaces of polished stainless steel, richly rusted steel and painted surfaces are transformed into the abstract and lyrical.
Working from his studio in a warehouse in historic Black Rock, Cunningham has a plentiful abundance of materials at his imaginative and creative disposal. The sculptor works spontaneously, welding pieces together rather quickly in an improvisational manner, working on many sculptures simultaneously. He removes or adds forms at will, making new associations within a work, creating a dialogue of textures and shapes. Much like a painter who leaves brush strokes on a canvas, Cunningham often burnishes his stainless steel pieces and prefers to let the welding joints show.
When asked if his work hides any messages about environmentalism, ecology or sustainability, Cunningham relates that his work is only about salvaged materials interacting with light and space, and that the pieces are straightforward and accessible.
Catch the opening of Cunningham’s show tomorrow at Artsphere.
Friday, September 10th, 6:30 pm
Artsphere Studio & Gallery
447 Amherst Street
Buffalo, NY 14207
Above image depicts “Puzzlement” stainless steel by Eugene