After three years of work on this project, my scale version of the Hudson River (formed out of historic Hudson River bricks) will be on view September 30 & October 1st at GlenLily Grounds, 532 Grand Avenue, Newburgh, NY.
Handmade bricks are like fingerprints; no two are identical. The Hudson River region was the world capital of brick making in the late 19th Century and early 20th Century and fueled the city’s population boom. Hundreds of brick making facilities existed along the river from the late 1700s into the 1940s. Living in NYC, it was an almost daily event that I saw these edifices demolished, disassembled into piles that were gathered and carted off to points unknown. I started collecting bricks from destroyed buildings and defunct brickyards. After two decades in NYC, I followed these bricks back to their source along the Hudson and relocated to a 100+ year old brick foundation Edwardian style home in the city of Poughkeepsie. Of the estimated 400 brickyards along the Hudson I currently have about 180 brickyards (and hundreds of bricks) represented in my collection. Each brick has the name or symbol of the historic brickyard stamped into the top indicating its origins. The stamps can only be seen before the bricks are assembled into structures or after the building is disassembled.
"Hudson River of Bricks" forms the curves of the Hudson River where the brickyards existed from NYC to Albany. The work is created out of bricks that were originally clay dug from the river itself. I am glazing one example from each brickyard with a watery blue hue and then re-firing them in a modern kiln. Each blue brick will be put in the geographic location along the sculpted river where the brickyard existed. The keyed-up palette embellishes the natural colors of the bricks (based on clay body, firing temperature, age, paint and glaze).
For in-process images visit: https://www.instagram.com/explore/tags/hudsonriverofbricks/