Always one of my favorite exhibitions, thanks to its constant combination of new artists and the latest career progression by familiar names, the 2023 Annual Danforth Juried Exhibition did not disappoint. Juried by Rachel Passannante, Collection Curator, Danforth Art Museum; Leslie Starobin, Professor of Art, Framingham State University; and Erin Becker, Executive Director, Norma Jean Calderwood Director of the Cambridge Art Association, its imminent opening was announced through a Danforth Art Facebook page featuring a picture of C.A. Stigliano helping to install his “Galatea” sculpture.
Named after a sculpture by the legendary Greek sculptor Pygmalion, held Pinocchio-style by four strings from the ceiling, it was awarded the exhibition’s First Prize. Standing face to face with it, exploring its marking and tattoos, one looks into eyes that feel real and that contain a soul that’s equally examining you.
“The piece took me two years to complete,” he explained in an email, noting that he started with fully scale drawings and pieces of poplar that were cut with a table saw — and then a jigsaw — to be glued together. “A little more than a year and a half of that was spent building and hollowing out the figure and preparing the joints. Five months (approximately for the drawings (taken from art historical images, and all are scenes of violence against women), which were drawn on, burned in (using a fine bladed wood burner) and then painted.”