Wistman’s Wood

Joyce Lyon

September 10-October 15, 2016

Wistman’s Wood

Opening Reception: Saturday, September 10, 2-5 p.m.

In this new body of work, Joyce Lyon visually records Wistman’s Wood, a piece of land nestled on the southern edge of Dartmoor in Devon, England. Lyon first learned of this place over thirty years ago from an essay by John Fowles. Since then, Lyon has been able to visit Wistman’s Wood on multiple occasions, most recently in October 2015. This unique wood is populated by dwarfed, ancient oaks covered in rare forms of moss and hanging lichens protected by the side of a hilI.

As Lyon reflects, “In part these trees have survived because they grow in a clitter field – a field of boulders – that has prevented sheep that graze freely on the moor from being able to enter the wood. Their gnarled, intertwining branches speak to the complex interrelationships among growing things.” Perhaps, as some studies suggest, the habits and interrelationships among these trees mimic our own human relationships. While Lyon has admired Wistman’s Wood for a number of years, this is her first endeavor to capture the bewitching landscape.

Lyon has written:

To enter Wistman’s Wood is to enter a world that opens to the imagination, juxtaposing the eerily beautiful and potentially dangerous, the familiar and sharply unfamiliar. Stories about the Wood abound: that it is a refuge of wraiths and spirits or escaped prisoners from nearby Princetown Prison. Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Hound of the Baskervilles was in part inspired by Wistman’s Wood.

Lyon, New York born and Minnesota based, is a maker of drawings and digital artist’s books. She is a founding member of the Women’s Art Registry of Minnesota (WARM) and has been the recipient of numerous awards, including: three Minnesota State Arts Board Fellowships, a Jerome MCBA Books Arts Grant, and a Fulbright-Hays Group Project in Poland. Her work has been exhibited and collected nationally over the past thirty years. Lyon is also an Associate Professor of Art emerita at the University of Minnesota.

The artist will be present at the opening reception on Saturday, September 10 from 2 to 5 p.m. The exhibition runs concurrently with Earth, Rock, Water, Sky: Connemara Paintings, an exhibition of paintings by Joseph Byrne in the main gallery. Both exhibitions continue through October 15.