Arts and Entertainment

Artist John Wood presents “Imagine That,” a series of his photographic art

“Spirit World” is one of Wood’s works that will be on display. - Courtesy of John Wood
“Spirit World” is one of Wood’s works that will be on display.
— image credit: Courtesy of John Wood

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Is it a hunk of metal found in a junk yard?

Find out at the “Imagine That” series showing this weekend.

Many may find themselves pondering a piece of island artist John Wood’s photographic art, wondering what the original subject was, or simply enjoying the work as it is.

Either way, it looks good on a wall.

His artwork takes photographs beyond the picture itself, manipulating it to create an image that at times doesn’t initially resemble the original.

“It’s about beauty in things you probably don’t recognize when you see it,” Wood said. “I call it photo art. Some of it is closer to abstract painting that photography.”

Some prints may easily meet the eye, while others require further investigation.

“Most people say that it’s a painting, and then want to know what the object is,” Wood said. “Normally you won’t recognize it when you look at it.”

Wood, an island resident, finds his subjects in objects others islanders see every day but might not take the time to notice.

“An old lifeboat, weird stuff that I find in junk yards or around the home,” Wood explained. “Stuff that people ordinarily walk by. I enjoy pointing it out.”

One image, for example, appears like a mountain peak stretching into a blue sky, or desert rocks meeting a clear pool of water, or any other mystery landscape from the eye’s range of interpretation. Some may be surprised to discover that the photograph’s subject began as a piece of scrap metal that Wood found in a junk yard.

Other photographs take a different approach, such as a shot of 4x4 wood beams stacked in an even pile, each bearing a different grain and color.

“I like to dignify the ordinary.” Wood said. “I guess by presenting it in a way that people normally wouldn’t think of.”

Wood will host an opening reception for “Imagine That” from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, April 15 at OfficeXpats in the Pavilion on Madison Avenue.

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