These pieces are made entirely of bamboo and waxed linen, and although they suggest basket shapes they are more sculptural than functional. The bamboo is bent using heat, interwoven, and then secured using waxed linen knots. The shapes are inspired by traditional Japanese baskets, which use humble materials to suggest movement and energy associated with natural forces in the environment. They embody the Japanese wabi-sabi aesthetic by using perishable, natural materials in a way that is more suggestive than literal. The result is an elegant object with an abstract quality similar to Japanese calligraphy, which relies to a large extent on movement and energy to convey meaning. In this respect, they can be viewed as three-dimensional calligraphy. They also reflect the Japanese gardener’s use of simple materials and techniques to suggest a completely natural form. The hand of the maker disappears, and the object appears to have taken shape organically.
Originally from Michigan, and after spending twenty years in the Southwest, I now reside in Astoria, Oregon, where the climate is a good compromise between the Midwest and Southwest.
I have worked in a number of professions, primarily teaching and urban planning, while continuing to develop my skills in painting. With a degree in art from Kalamazoo College and graduate work at the Center for Creative Studies in Detroit, I worked for a summer as an intern at the Art Institute of Chicago in the late 60’s where I was exposed to the work of Willem deKooning, whose paintings form a significant influence on my own work.
Other influences include the work of Joan Mitchell and Susan Rothenberg. I also draw inspiration from contemporary crafts, principally wood-fired ceramics and contemporary Japanese textiles and basketry.
I have exhibited widely in the Southwest and Northwest since the early 1990’s, having had eleven one-person shows in Santa Fe, Portland, Denver, Seattle, and Astoria.
My work is in private and corporate collections of contemporary art in the United States, Europe, Japan, and the Caribbean. In Oregon, my paintings can be seen at the RiverSea Gallery in Astoria, White Bird Gallery in Cannon Beach, Fairweather House and Garden Gallery in Seaside, and at Gallery 903 in Portland. Outside Oregon, I exhibit in Scottsdale, Arizona, and Albuquerque, New Mexico.
On Saturday April 2nd Charles Schweigert will meet and greet art patrons at the Fairweather House and Gallery during the Seaside First Saturday Art Walk 5-7pm.
Please visit http://www.facebook.com/SeasideFirstSaturdayArtWalk for more information.
Go to http://www.fairweatherhouseandgallery.com for additional information about the gallery.
Please visit http://www.cjschweigert.com for more information about the artist.