[act-ma] 4/11-4/15: Donald Shambroom's "Recruits" : an emergency exhibition at Pierre Menard Gallery

Mary Curtin marycurtin at comcast.net
Wed Mar 14 10:52:38 PDT 2007

Visual Art (3D) / Political Sculpture
March, 2007
Media Contact for the Pierre Menard Gallery:
Mary Curtin, 617-241-9664, 617-470-5867 (cell), marycurtin at comcast.net
[high res images available]

Donald Shambroom's
an emergency exhibition

April 11-15
Pierre Menard Gallery

Opening reception, Saturday, April 14, 6-9 pm
"Art and War" discussion, Sunday, April 15, 3-5 pm
Kevin Bowen (poet), Kermit Dunkelberg (actor), 
Donald Shambroom (sculptor) & Chip Troiano (photographer)

(Cambridge, MA) Pierre Menard Gallery presents Donald Shambroom's "Recruits"
: an emergency exhibition. Wednesday-Sunday, April 11-15, with opening
reception, Saturday, April 14, 6-9 pm, and "Art and War' discussion, Sunday,
April 15, 3-5 pm. Pierre Menard Gallery, 10 Arrow Street, Cambridge. Regular
gallery hours: Wednesday-Sunday, 11 am-7 pm. Free and open to the public.
For more information, 617-868-2033 or www.pierremenardgallery.com.

All of Donald Shambroom's recent sculptures address the tragedy of war. Each
piece represents a point in time, a random instant when the lives of a small
group of soldiers are transformed. His sculptures range in height from five
to nine feet, are made of clay, various kinds of wood, and sign paint - and
are each frozen in a tragic moment.

In 2005, Shambroom first began to explore war as a theme and installed his
work in storefronts to jar the passersby. He would stress that his pieces
were not anti-war, but rather a detached reminder of the violent loss of
life in wartime. But with "Recruits", Shambroom has taken a stand.
Detachment is not an option.

Background information:

Donald Shambroom is a painter and sculptor whose works have been shown in
New York, Los Angeles, and Boston. After completing his first three years of
undergraduate study in philosophy at Yale University, Shambroom was chosen
as Scholar of the House in art for his senior year. His paintings and
drawings have been acquired by the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, the
DeCordova Museum, and the Metropolitan Museum in New York. Some of his
better-known pieces involve imaginary construction sites based on real-world
scenes. His "Flying Dream" series show a single figure against a golden sky,
hurtling through, or suspended in, space. Shambroom began creating sculpture
in 2000 after the death of his wife of 22 years, when his deep interest in
the works and writings of French painter and sculptor Marcel Duchamp
inspired him to make objects that stand on the floor.  For the past several
years, Shambroom's public art project "Fatalities" has appeared in
storefronts throughout the greater Boston area. He terms them as modest
ciphers of the sudden termination of life in war, and they are meant to be
displayed in busy retail locations. His work can be seen at
<http://www.donaldshambroom.com/> www.donaldshambroom.com.

Discussion participants:

Poet Kevin Bowen was drafted and served in the 1st Air Cavalry Division in
Vietnam from 1968-1969. A graduate of the UMass Boston, Bowen is a former
Danforth Fellow and Fulbright Fellow at New College, Oxford and earned his
Ph.D. in English Literature from the SUNY Buffalo. He worked as an aide and
speechwriter for Lt. Governor Thomas P. O'Neill, III prior to becoming
director of the Veterans' Upward Bound Program at UMass Boston in 1984. He
was appointed co-director of the Joiner Center in 1984 and has been the
director since 1993. Since 1987, he has returned to Vietnam many times,
initiating cultural, educational, and humanitarian exchanges. He is an
adjunct Associate Professor in the English Department where he teaches
courses in creative writing, literature and war, and the literature of the
Vietnam War. His poetry has been published by Curbstone Press and has also
appeared in Agni, American Poetry Review, Boston Review, Ploughshares, among
others. He has edited a special feature on contemporary Vietnamese poetry
and with Bruce Weigl, is co-editor of Writing Between the Lines: Writings on
War and Its Consequences.

Actor Kermit Dunkelberg, a co-founder and Core Actor of Pilgrim Theatre, has
created ground-breaking roles for the company for twenty years.  A student
of Jerzy Grotowski's at Irvine, CA, and a company member of Drugie Studio
Wroclawskie (Second Studio of Wroclaw Poland, under Zbigniew Cynkutis),
Dunkelberg has explored the sonic and physical textures of performance,
pushing the envelope with each new artistic journey. He has just completed a
run of Pilgrim Theatre's Kafka's The Trial: "An Extraordinary Rendition
which he developed as a performative exploration of Franz Kafka's tale of
domestic surveillance and undisclosed charges. The performance invites the
audience, without judgment, into a dialogue about their role in today's
"theatre" of war. 

Photographer Chip Troiano served with the Sixth Armored Cavalry in Vietnam,
from 1966-1967, first in an infantry platoon as a machine gunner, and then
later as a door gunner on a helicopter gunship. In 1999, he took his first
trip back to Vietnam, using it as an opportunity to take pictures of a
country and its people, who still live as they did decades earlier despite
the ravages of war.  Recently he returned to Vietnam, this time working with
filmmaker Ed Nef, who is creating a documentary for PBS about Vietnam
veterans who have gone back. A native of Staten Island, Troiano has lived in
Vermont since the early 70's and has been a participant in many Bread and
Puppet Theater events. He is also a justice of the peace and works as an
investigator for a public defender. 

The Pierre Menard Gallery opened in Harvard Square in the fall of 2006, in a
brick building that previously housed an antique shop. The removal of the
second floor resulted in a tall, striking space, accompanied by two smaller
exhibition rooms below. The gallery features contemporary art, and visual
art by writers. Pierre Menard, the gallery's namesake, is a fictional
character from a story by Jorge Luis Borges, whose inventive spirit helps
set the tone for the enterprise. For more Information, log onto


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c/o Mary Curtin
PO Box 290703, Charlestown, MA 02129
617-241-9664, 617-470-5867 (cell), marycurtin at comcast.net
"dedicated to staging insightful entertainment, particularly in
non-traditional venues"




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