Visions from the Slash: Sculptural Meditations on Heaven & Hell
Tofino artist and Regent alumnus Dan Law explores themes through an eclectic array of wood and charcoal installations.
For Visions from the Slash, I focused on three unifying factors: material, theme, and narrative.
As a primary material for my art, I prefer wood—not because it is a particularly easy medium to work with (it's not), but because I like the way wood looks, feels, and smells at each stage—from the moment of salvaging it on mountainous slash, to milling it with my father-in-law, to carving, sanding, and finishing it in my studio. When a piece is complete, I feel content knowing that I can point to the spot on the earth where it grew, and that I can tell its story from start to finish.
The theme of heaven and hell—encompassing life, death, and a distillation of our greatest hopes and fears—is a theme I often work through in my art. While I worked as an RN for fifteen years, death was often a weekly routine. While wrapping bodies, I was continually confronted with the eternal questions, “Where did they go?” and (besides drinking coffee), “What happens now?” Working on Visions from the Slash was a revelatory process through which I wrestled with my own concepts of the afterlife.
The third aspect of my work is the individual narratives—just as I choose to work with wood because I like wood, I also choose to use stories in my work simply because I like stories. As a playwright, I find that narratives connect to audiences and may reveal deeper truths than more prescriptive genres.
Though the works themselves may be diverse both in form and subject, Visions from the Slash aims for a conceptually unified experience through these common threads.