SCULP­TURAL TRAIL TELLS OF TRUE WIT

> 9 MY­ATT EX­HIBITS TO COVER 20 YEARS OF WHIMSY — WITH A RE­CY­CLING ZEAL

The Commercial Appeal - Go Memphis - - Art - By Fredric Koep­pel

IF SCULP­TOR GREELY MY­ATT, with his quilts made of wood scraps and his thought clouds made of old tin boxes, were not al­ready one of the city’s most vis­i­ble artists, he will be within the next month or so. To cel­e­brate My­att’s 20 years in Mem­phis, eight sites will fea­ture ex­am­ples of ev­ery kind of art he has made since he came to teach at Mem­phis State Uni­ver­sity in 1989, along with new work at David Lusk Gallery.

My­att re­sists the word “ret­ro­spec­tive” for the group of nine ex­hi­bi­tions, but he doesn’t ob­ject to terms like “ex­trav­a­ganza” or “Greely-palooza.” In fact, he laughs some­what rue­fully at the ef­fort ex­pended to in­stall all of th­ese shows in time for their var­i­ous open­ings, in­clud­ing two to­day.

“Yeah,” he said Mon­day, tak­ing a break from in­stalling work at the Na­tional Or­na­men­tal Metal Mu­seum, “we’re get­ting pretty close to be­ing un­der the gun.”

What­ever the venue, all the shows carry the same ti­tle, “Greely My­att and ex­actly Twenty Years,” with a line strik­ing through “and ex­actly”, an ex­pres­sion of My­att’s am­biva­lent feel­ings about ca­reer-sur­vey ex­hi­bi­tions.

“It’s just the past 20 years,” he said. “I made a lot of work in the years be­fore that.”

My­att’s sculp­ture em­bod­ies the re­cy­cling ethic with zeal. View­ers of his work can ex­pect to see re­claimed wood and metal, win­dow frames, mat­tress springs, flo­res­cent lights and found ob­jects of many kinds in­cor­po­rated with aban­don. His “what you see is not what you get” method in­cludes mak­ing cup­cakes from wood and light bulbs from con­crete. A sense of ex­ag­ger­a­tion leads to gi­ant rock­ing chairs and teddy bears, while his ru­ral South­ern roots are re­vealed in rain­bow-hued

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