A recent visit to Sperryville, Virginia led to a tip to stop by Haley Fine Art, just down the street from the Middle Street Gallery. Like much of Sperryville, what's inside the quaint, unassuming, historic architecture can be a real surprise, as is the case with local sculptor Alex Bay's "Untitled" exhibit. Upon entering the gallery's front door, Kris and I were greeted by a room showcasing an enormous, complex, horizontally configured rectangular structure called "Rudy's Garage". This giant kinetic masterpiece moves and makes sounds, even music, in a musique concrete sort of way. Seeing this magnificent and complex work was only the beginning of experiencing an exhibit that completely took my wife and I by surprise, as we had no idea what we were in for.
While "Rudy's Garage" was definitely the show stealer, Bay's smaller works had an intimate quality to them that was equally powerful and intricate, inviting the viewer to lean in and take a closer look around, and perhaps get lost a little.
I think of the inventiveness of Alexander Calder's work, and the resourceful approach Louise Nevelson took to sculpture, yet Bay's art stands in a world all it's own, utilizing found objects and sound, even, playing with light and shadow, each sculpture a universe unto itself.
Sperryville, as I have found, is a place where it's more than meets the eye, and Haley Fine Art, and the current Alex Bay exhibit is one fine example of such a claim. This is definitely a show not to miss!