A pair of ravaged pewter sculptures resembling hieroglyphs flank the window in the Groton School’s Brodigan Gallery on the site map for its upcoming “In a State of Becoming” exhibition of work by Boston-based metalsmith and sculptor Venetia Dale. Both are the height of a fireplug — one rotund, the other a spiky “X.” They reach upwards like toddlers asking to be picked up. “Between: Kitchen-Aid Mixer,” together with wall-mounted pewter castings of other Styrofoam packing inserts, comprise Dale’s “Between” series. Their label points to the mother’s essential functions: holding, supporting and aiding the child, both in a physical and an emotional environment.
Dale, a visiting lecturer at the Mass College of Art and Design, began hoarding packaging materials in the new house where she would raise her young family. They came from accessories and comforts acquired for the home — faucets, freezers, dehumidifiers and bunny lights. The crown jewel was the mixer, the wedding gift she views as the quintessential symbol of the American bride’s dream home.