The general confusion caused by life and thwarted desires takes shape in new sculptures at the NAU Art Museum, on display from September 10 through November 23.
Rough and Tumble: Sculptures by Eric Conrad features large faceless, sculptures of vaguely humanoid or zoomorphic appearance, caught up in awkward physical interactions. Other, smaller pieces are made from cast-off materials such as used clothing, cheap souvenirs and old team mascots. The inherently democratic nature of his materials underscores the universality of the emotions and experiences his figures express.
“I like the thrill of making something out of nothing, or less than nothing,” Conrad says. “Things that have been used and discarded sometimes tend to feel like they have less than zero value. It’s meaningful to work with materials that had a history of use before they came to me.”
Born in Toronto, Conrad lives in Lawrence, Kansas, and exhibits in the United States and internationally, including in Hungary, Poland and New Zealand. He received a Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics and Fine Art from Kalamazoo College in Michigan, and a Master of Fine Arts from the Rhode Island School of Design. He received a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant and participates in numerous artist residencies.
The NAU Art Museum is open from noon to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday at 620 S. Knoles Drive on NAU’s Flagstaff campus. Entrance to the museum is free. A $2 donation is suggested.
Image: “Us-Two” sculpture by Eric Conrad.