Valdosta Daily Times


August 5, 2013

The Art of Lost and Found

VALDOSTA — Whether it is a saw, or a paint-can lid, or an egg, or a briquette of charcoal, artist Richard Peterman can see the art in the everyday.

He creates three-dimensional installations and compositions that share this vision with viewers. He brings this intriguing sensibility this week to the Annette Howell Turner Center for the Arts as part of its latest series of exhibits.

“Common household items or found objects are often key components in his compositions,” according to the show’s artist biography. “Beyond his formal artistic training, he credits being from a family full of carpenters and many years of work experience in the general construction trades, specifically woodworking, as a major influence on his art.”

Peterman is the Valdosta State University art studio supervisor. He has been with the VSU art department since 1997. He oversees the woodworking lab and teaches classes such as two-dimensional and three-dimensional design. He is also a Valdosta State graduate, having earned a bachelor of fine arts degree in art in 1990. In 1993, Peterman earned his master’s degree in studio art from Florida State University. 

Trained in drawing, painting, printmaking and sculpture, Peterman often focuses on abstract mixed-media sculptures and assembled pieces. This method comes from his innate desire to “tinker with stuff and build things.”

“As a child, I always had access to a variety of power tools and building materials,” Peterman says in an artistic statement. “My favorite toys were usually the homemade ones such as kites, slingshots, stilts, or custom-built bicycles made from scrap parts that my brothers and I often created.”

He recalls building a tree house with a drawbridge ladder, a zip-line and even a rollercoaster.

“Creating and making things was a fun way to entertain myself as a kid,” Peterman notes. “As an adult, I still like to use my imagination, tinker around with tools, and build stuff with my hands. I think I’m just a kid at heart who still likes to play and it’s probably evident in my art.”

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