Thursday, November 21, 2019

MUSEUM OF THE SHENANDOAH VALLEY, WINCHESTER, VIRGINIA - PART 3

Last post from this museum for a while.



I always find any exhibit fascinating, and whenever you learn something about the piece, the artist's vision becomes more clear.


This is the Tree House by the same artist.


I missed taking a photo of the information on the above sculpture, but I found the website here.  If you scroll down you will see it.  It has a fascinating description of how Mr. Cross found his materials.  The other works of art and their process are just as interesting.   The following tells you its history and I will type all of it as it is written on the website.



"Fig 9. Tree House by Robert L. Cross (American, born 1926), Winchester, VA, 1966-1974.  Mixed media.  Collection of the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, 2015.10.3, gift of Robert L. Cross.  Photo by Rick Foster." (the photo on the website, not the one above which is one I took).
"Because locust is an extremely dense wood and thus difficult to work, Cross purposefully looked for stumps that had already been hollowed out by termites.  Of the termites, Cross recalls: "We all worked together.  They helped me on the inside and I did my work on the outside."  I once asked Cross if he had made sure that all of the termites had left the stumps before bringing them into his house.  His reply?  No, but he probably should have.

On both stump sculptures, Cross ingeniously used the contours of the wood to his advantage.  Small openings in the bark became opportunities for fully-movable windows and doors.  A large branch shoot and the top of the trunk on the Stump Map became the locations for the states of Alaska and Hawaii, which do not touch the U.S. mainland.  One of the deepest crevices in the wood became the spot in which the two sides of the map converge, marked by a red line dividing the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans."

There is a photo of another tree house - see here -  - first and tenth photo - when Mr. Cross talks about Alaska and Hawaii.


I found the above information at the museum's blog which you can find if you click on this link.








I must have shaken the camera when taking a photo of this description as it came out blurry.  To save your eyesight I typed it for you.

"Doll, mid-1800s
Maker unknown
Forestville, Shenandoah County, Virginia
Yellow Pine

2017 09.1  gift of Nancy Branner Stewart in honor of Naomi Kibler(?)"

Few belongings of the Valley's enslaved population survive.  This doll may be an exception.  In the 1940s, while playing in a cabin on the Branner family farm mear Forestville, two young girls found this doll in a hidden nook.  A century earlier this cabin had served as the farm's slave quarters.  An enslaved person living in the cabin probably made the doll."

I could barely read the last paragraph in this description, and as I don't want to get any facts wrong, I will leave it until my next visit.  I was unable to find any more information online.














By the time we got to these interesting rooms, we had to quicken our pace as it was time to meet our son.  No further information from here.  Next time we go back I will enjoy seeing the museum at a more leisurely pace.














22 comments:

  1. You could spend hours in a museum looking and learning with the help of the information boards and sometimes staff who know about the exhibits and enjoy working or volunteering there. Mr Cross has made some interesting sculptures from natural materials. Thank you for sharing what caught your eye. I expect you'll visit again sometime.

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  2. Um museu muito interessante, gostei de ver e conhecer.
    Um abraço e continuação de uma boa semana.

    Andarilhar
    Dedais de Francisco e Idalisa
    O prazer dos livros

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    1. Muito obrigado! Um abraço e um bom final de semana para você :)

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  3. love the tree house - what a talented man, what an interesting museum; things were simple back then but probably much harder

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    1. Very talented indeed Linda. I agree with you :)

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  4. Hello, Denise! The sculptures are wonderful, I like the treehouse. Great exhibits and museum, thanks for sharing your visit. Wishing you a happy day!

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  5. The art pieces are interesting and show the use of natural material I always like the exhibits of old times like the kitchen you show.

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  6. Cross' work is amazing, my favorite being the rock house! And so interesting how he finds his materials, on the floor of other places before it gets swept away. I always thought those Barrister's wigs looked so stupid. I wonder how they ever came into being? I love looking at the kitchen. I think the green corner cabinet would look nice in a kitchen today.

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    1. That was fascinating Ginny, especially using the termites. The barristers in England still use those wigs I believe. At least they did when I lived there. I would enjoy many of those items in my own kitchen :)

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  7. Lubię muzea i wystawy . Milo było zwiedzać razem z Tobą. Miłego tygodnia życzę:)

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    1. Jestem bardzo szczęśliwy, że ci się podobało. Życzę szczęśliwej soboty i niedzieli :)

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  8. I could definitely spend a whole day at that museum. Those art pieces of Mr. Cross are so interesting. I wonder what they made those wigs out of.

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    1. It is an enormous museum. It would keep me there all day Kay :) I will have to pay particular attention to the wig next time. Your question made me even curioser. I found this online:

      Materials. In the Colonial period, wigs were made from a range of different materials, from horsehair to goat hair. Light-colored horsehair was prized for its natural color, since light white or off-white wigs were fashionable.Sep 28, 2017

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  9. A wonderful place to visit! You've photographed it beautifully.

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    1. Thank you William, I am very happy you enjoyed :)

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  10. My, you are so thorough! I haven't seen that doll. Must look for it next time I visit the museum.

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    1. That's great Linda, I know I missed a lot on this visit :)

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  11. I've seen some attorneys wearing wigs in English movies, but didn't know that they were considered a symbol of power. It's so amazing what we can learn when going back into history. Happy weekend to you! RO

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    1. I didn't know that either RO, I just thought it was part of the uniform. Thank you and you have a happy weekend also :)

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