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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Bob Gregson retrospective reception tomorrow at City Lights Gallery in Bridgeport

City Lights Gallery
37 Markle Ct., Bridgeport, (203) 334-7748
Just a Phase: Artist's Retrospective of Bob Gregson
June 16—July 30, 2011.
Opening reception, Thurs., June 16, 5:30-8 p.m.

Press release

Bob Gregson, of Orange, has many sides to his artistic personality, but his best-known may be that of a creator of participatory art -- pieces that have movable parts that viewers are encouraged to touch and move, continually altering and changing the piece's composition.

The story of Gregson's creative career includes drawings, paintings, playful interactive constructions and "art situations." Viewers of all ages are invited to come and play with the art. Join us for an artist's reception, Thurs., June 16, 5:30—8 p.m.

A retrospective gives the viewer and the artist an opportunity to reflect back over decades of creative efforts. Themes and content are reworked. Ideas and imagery can be observed in different stages and forms. Gregson considers art an ever-changing process with various threads, phases and reoccurring connections he calls "art echoes," Featured works include, "The Bicker Box" and "Turning the Tables" and constructions called "Offshoots" that encourage creative play.

The "Bicker Booth" is divided into two sections with a small window between. Two participants enter either side of the booth and come face to face. Each side has a Rolodex file with approximately 300 theatrical clichés inspired from soap operas and movies. For example, "We'll never resolve this," "It's time you grow up," to "I don't care anymore," and I've had enough of your crap." A dramatic sound track sets the theatrical tone to bicker.

"Offshoots" are designed with moveable modules that the viewer can pivot to rearrange the composition. Also on exhibit are 2d and 3d plans for architectural environments to be set in nature. These plans include designs to be constructed over water, high grass or in the treetops. The architectural models and 2d renderings (fine pieces of art in and of themselves,) invite the viewer to take what is presented a step further, to imagine these clean, playful designs in nature, seeing and smelling the water and waves below, feeling the sea breeze, or hearing the leaves rustling in the wind. Then imagine yourself and others within these environments. Gregson's dream is to actually construct these environments in public places.

Under "Turning The Table" visitors discover a traditional-looking table rendered useless with four circular cut-outs and a spinning X-shaped bar. Four "monkey-boards" (used for automotive repairs) invite people to lie down and slip under the table. Underneath visitors find mirrors reflecting them and other participants and colors. The spinning bar can be seen as it passes over the holes creating another optical effect.

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