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Exploring Brighton's Sculpture: 'Wisdom of Our Ancestry'

Patch continues its tour of Brighton's art with a sculpture by Jeffrey Bohl.

Brighton Patch’s tour of the city’s public art left off last week with Ray Katz’s Spiral the Gate, which adorns the pocket park at the intersection of Main Street and Grand River Avenue.

This week, we head west on Main and back into the heart of downtown to view Wisdom of Our Ancestry, the only work in the Brighton Biennial Sculpture Exhibit that’s displayed indoors.

Too brittle to weather the elements, Jeffrey Bohl’s poured bronze sculpture is on display in the window of Artventures, a framing shop on Main Street.

At 6 inches by 8 inches by 22 inches, Wisdom of Our Ancestry is the smallest work in the Brighton Biennial.

On first glance, Wisdom of Our Ancestry appears to be a jagged hunk of rusted metal. If it weren’t on display in front of a white backdrop in an art shop window, it might be dismissed as junk. 

Bohl, who built his own foundry equipment, admitted that he is “drawn to images that look somewhat rough and uncalculated, like children's art.”

He added that art is often easy for children because they aren’t concerned with — or limited by — the definition of art.

“I try to get to that level of raw, and it takes quite a bit of letting go,” he said.

Wisdom of Our Ancestry, one of the temporary pieces in the Brighton Biennial Sculpture Exhibit, may be purchased for $600. For more information on Bohl’s work, visit his website.

The Brighton Biennial Sculpture Exhibit, which is overseen by the Brighton Arts and Culture Commission, originated in 2006. It comprises 35 sculptures, 12 permanent and 23 temporary. The permanent pieces were bought by or donated to the city. The temporary pieces, whose durations in Brighton depend on individual contracts with the BACC, are for sale. Prices and details are available at downtownbrighton.com/1/brighton/art_walk.asp.

Tina DeBord April 20, 2011 at 03:30 AM
Correction: "Wisdom of Our Ancestry" is not the only Brighton Biennial sculpture that is displayed indoors. Sergio Di Guisti's sculpture "Emergence" is on display in the lobby of Brighton City Hall.

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