Urban Totems – Solo Exhibition by Eric H. Steele
August 12, 2011 – September 26, 2011
Location: Renaissance Court at Chicago Cultural Center.
My work refers to natural disaster and the liminal space between destruction and hope. Spiritual remnants recombine and regenerate. The environment man builds envelopes him and shapes him as he shapes it. Idiosyncratic organic life co-exists and interacts with the systematic, organized built environment. Evolving forms and unchanging structures, complement, compete and cooperate, and influence each other. Our urban totems reflect our environment just as ancient totems reflected forests and mountains. The surface and texture of the architectural cityscape enfolds human culture, its icons, its gods and its heroes.
— Eric H. Steele
Eric H. Steele began his career in law and business. After practicing law and doing policy research, he practiced as a legal information technology consultant. He graduated from Yale University, A.B. 1963 and Harvard Law School, J.D. 1967. After practicing law, he shifted to metal sculpture, usually welded steel sculpture. He explores the interaction of man with the built and natural environments and the totemic meanings of his structures. His education in art includes courses and workshops including the Evanston Art Center, Evanston, IL, Lill Street Art Center, Chicago, IL, and Ox-Bow Summer Program of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
URBAN TOTEMS – By Eric H. Steele
The Connection between man and nature resonate with deep meanings and often spiritual significance. Native Americans and other tribal cultures living in natural settings [forest, desert, plains] typically draw their symbols to reify and express these relationships from the flora, fauna and land forms which surround them.
Modern ubran dwellers have no less meaningful connections to their enviornment but surroundings suggest a far different vocabulary to symbolize and express the meanings of these relationships.
Urban Tetem reflects our hopes and ways of seeing the world in the symbolic language of our urban enviornment just as ancient totems reflect the beliefs of those living among forests and wildlife. In each case the human spirit interacts with its enviornment, which, in turn, profoundy affect man’s expression of his spirit..
My work explores the relationships between man and his urban enviornment and the meanings that emerge from them. It evokes natural disaster and the liminal space between devastation and hope. Man endures, preserves, survives, builds and rebuilds.
PHOTO GALLERY / URBAN TOTEMS – BY ERIC STEELE
Thank You Eric for commissioning me to document this exhibition!
The photo-shoot was on August 17, 2011.
The exhibition looked amazing and it was a lot of fun photographing it.