Earthy, Not Homely 

Cherie Sampson, an art professor at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, creates environmentally based performances and captures them on video. Often filmed in the vast natural landscapes of Finland, Sampson's latest work is an homage to an epic Finnish poem, Kalevala, exploring the creation myth from the first canto. In At the Pole of Heaven, the water mother/air maiden figure climbs a treacherous handmade ladder, while the background audio track bundles a soothing array of birds, water currents and wind. Water is eminently present in Washington University art professor Joan Hall's piece, as well: Marginal Waters was inspired by Hall's relationship with the sea, drawing on her experiences as a sailboat racer and skilled ocean navigator. Intellectually understanding the effect of disposed plastics on the ocean is one thing, but interacting intimately with the horrors of it is quite another. In this collection, Hall uses debris taken from her expeditions and incorporates pieces into her handmade paper sculptures. The results are beautifully modern sculptures that appear more like artifacts than newly rendered creations. Sampson and Hall's work opens with a free reception from 5 to 9 p.m. tonight, and remains on display through October 13 at the Bruno David Gallery (3721 Washington Boulevard). For more information, call 314-531-3030 or visit at
Wednesdays-Saturdays. Starts: Sept. 7. Continues through Oct. 13, 2012

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