PULLMAN, Wash. — The Washington State University’s Museum of Art is displaying two neon sculptures by artist Neal Conner in the second installation of “Window Project.”
The sculptures, “Totem 9” and “Mother,” will be in the windows of the Fine Arts Center through July.
“Totem 9” illuminates a metal base with decorative totem features, including red wings, blue feet and an orange beak. Conner drew on childhood experience while constructing his totem sculptures, including seeing a totem pole at the Smithsonian at age 4.
“Mother” is a large, wall piece that is the last in a series of four female images: mother, mistress, witch and goddess.
Conner’s work is described as being unique and complex. It also comments on cultural and social issues such as Native American culture and life cycles, said Roger H.D. Rowley, Curator of Exhibitions at the Museum of Art.
Conner began designing neon art in his 20s. He is inspired by his surroundings and childhood memories. Some of his work reflects his visit to the Smithsonian, a partial eclipse which nearly blinded him when he was 12, German folklore, a local ballet company and optical illusions.
All WSU Museum of Art events are free and open to the public.