"Scout" Art Exhibition
New Paintings by Crystal Birns

July 2 - July 30, 2005
Opening Reception: July 2, 8-11pm

Images from the opening

Crystal Birns' Artist Statement
Having moved across the country many times I¹ve always anchored myself in a place by taking daily walks and found comfort and inspiration in the visual dialogue that patterns every neighborhood - telephone poles, birds, trees, railroad tracks, sky. Lately as a yoga student and dancer I¹ve been especially interested in the Œinner¹ landscape of humans (bones, muscle, blood, thoughts, perceptions, dreams) and how it is mirrored and augmented by this outer landscape (trees, rivers, traffic, buildings) around us. If an ecosystem is all about relationships then what is this ecosystem of a suburban neighborhood - the threshold between human-made order and natural order, between the world of humans and the world of the wilderness? I find it compelling and fascinating to pay attention to this threshold ­ and love to spend afternoons sitting in one spot painting and listening to it¹s unique sounds and rhythms (the early morning bird sounds becoming truck sounds becoming beeping horns becoming a train whistle becoming a baseball game becoming kids walking across the street becoming rush hour traffic- telephone poles and trees, train tracks and rivers, etc).
Painting is a way for me to explore all of that ­ which is how these paintings here came to be. Painting calms me down and opens my eyes and I love it.

I studied ceramics and painting at Humboldt State University in California, and after graduating started a mural painting business in Santa Cruz CA. Twenty murals later I moved to Kent and started working at a Nature Center in Shaker Heights and began to paint and learn the names of some of Ohio¹s inhabitants (snapping turtles, jewelweed, finches, cardinals, muskrats, wild ginger, birch, may apple, and wood ducks) and find a way to call Ohio home.