A Tree Falls In Brooklyn by Eric Pesso
Central Library, Foyer Gallery Cases
An exhibition of wood sculptures, created from Brooklyn trees and carved by Brooklyn native Eric Pesso. Prospect Park and the streets of Ditmas Park are the sources from which this sculptor harvests the oak, maple, sycamore, ash, and other species that are the raw material for his work.
The pieces in this exhibition represent three different styles I’ve been working on for several years. The “Circular” pieces are carved from cross sections of a tree trunk and are all symmetrical. The “Surfaces” are carved from the length of a trunk and also often display a subtle degree of symmetry. The pieces I call “Continuum” are more free-form intertwining lines in space, or knots. In all I gravitate towards airy, free-flowing forms with lots of movement.
Nearly all of the wood used in my work is harvested from fallen Brooklyn trees—oak, maple, sycamore, ash, cherry and others. I work exclusively by hand from the initial rough carving with chisel and mallet, through the shaping with various rasps and scrapers, to the finishing with lots and lots of sandpaper. My ideas come mostly from simply doodling with clay or wire until something compelling emerges that I feel can be translated into wood. Very often that “something” has a geometric or symmetric component.
Eric Pesso is a self-taught artist with a background in mathematics (MS, Brooklyn College). He began to pursue art in his 20s after becoming inspired by sculptor Jose de Rivera and later by Moore, Brancusi, Noguchi and others. His work is regularly featured at the Brooklyn Waterfront Artists Coalition in Red Hook and at the Flatbush Artists Studio Tour in Ditmas Park. He lives in Brooklyn and works as a computer programmer.