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Wood you look at that!

Thursday, 18th July, 2019 10:33am

An internationally acclaimed California-based artist will be drawing inspiration on Leeside this summer as she undertakes a two month residency.

Adrien Segal, from Oakland California, recently began her two month stint at Cork’s creative hub Benchspace where she plans to explore new methods and materials for wood sculpture.

These will include steam-bending wood, unconventional joinery methods for sculptural forms and in-depth carving techniques in solid timber.

“It’s really nice. I’ve really enjoyed it so far. Totally changing your surroundings can give you a completely new perspective because you pay attention to things that would normally fade into the background if you saw them every single day,” Adrien told the Cork Independent.

“I’ve been exposed to new species of wood here. Each species really has different characteristics so I’ve been having a little fun just trying out different woods from what I would normally have access to in California,” she added.

While here she will join some of Cork and Ireland’s best emerging design talent who are already working from Benchspace.

As part of her residency Adrien will offer public presentations, demonstrations and masterclasses all culminating in an exhibition and presentation of her new work on 24 August.

“I don’t ever claim to have full control of anything, so I like to think that every project is a collaboration between either with the material, or the setting, or the other people involved or whatever other elements might have forces on the artwork,” Adrien said.

She continued: “Artwork, especially sculpture and woodworking is very process based so as I’m working on a project I’m constantly reassessing and shifting and fine tuning.”

Adrien has exhibited in galleries in San Francisco, Philadelphia and Canada and counts Facebook as one of her clients with her work exhibited in their offices.

She said: “This is the first international residency that took me overseas. I’ve worked in Canada and Mexico. I really intentionally sought out this residency because I’ve been really interested in broadening my understanding of the world and it’s really awesome that Ireland is the first overseas place I’ve worked in.”

Benchspace was established in Cork in April 2017 to give creative start-ups a space to work and collaborate and to establish themselves in the city and surrounding region.

Benchspace Co-founder and GMIT Lecturer, Seán Breen, said: “Our current start-ups and six strong voluntary team will benefit hugely from seeing Adrien’s talent and learning from her experience, while we’re confident that Cork city and surrounds will provide the perfect back drop to contribute to and inspire her work.”

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