Sculptor artist to exhibit at MVCArts

by Carly Proulx

Edwin Falk has been creating art for over 40 years. You can see his work on display at the Mohawk Valley Center for the Arts, which opens June 16, 2022. There will be a conglomeration of sculpture ranging from whimsical art to functional art, an art form that is safe to say the Gallery, even pre-pandemic, has not seen for some time.

Falk’s sculptures are made up of just about anything and everything, including the kitchen sink. Most of the parts were salvaged from junk heaps, dilapidated old farmhouses and scrap yards. And as many tools as he has tinkered with over the years, multiply by 10 and you’ll get an approximation of the number of stories that come with Falk’s work. Realizing that you are looking at old stove legs from the 19th century, even older corn and bean shellers, and auto parts from the 1930s, these parts become a kind of roadmap for our own American history. .

I had the pleasure of chatting with Edwin at his 48 acre farm with solar panels up north, where he and his wife Pam have lived off the grid since buying the property in 1975. Just like visiting a sculpture park , Falk’s art, resisting the external elements, invites the viewer to marvel. Falk said: “Thanks to my years of repair, I know how best to put my work together so that it has integrity. I am aware of the best base for each piece. A moving kinetic sculpture rests on one of Falk’s largest sculptures, a three-tiered octagonal carousel made of beams and trestles from a 100-year-old train barn. Facing west, the carousel that Falk began to create in 2010 overlooks a character-studded courtyard, two greenhouses and the pretty stone house of Edwin and his wife Pam. Except for a few ponies, it was completed in 2020. Did I mention how it works? Did I mention it runs on a 120 watt solar panel?

Falk has been making art since 1976, when a good friend and art teacher from Lowville first inspired him. He has participated in numerous art exhibitions in the North Country over the past 30 years. At the View Center for Arts & Culture in Old Forge, Falk won 1st Prize in 1994 for his sculpture “The Dove” and in 1996 won a Master Chip for his sculpture “Handyman”. Most recently, Falk won 3rd Prize at View’s Central Adirondack Art Show for his sculpture “Deep Water Dream 2”. In the early 2000s, his prized sculptures at the Gibson Gallery in Potsdam were “Friskie” and “Vultures Victuals”. Many of Falk’s sculptures bear a resemblance to their names, while less obvious ones are endowed with double-edged humor, alluding to certain historical and/or societal missteps. Whether these pieces stand alone on bases or welded together, Falk aims to recycle materials and resurrect parts of history that would otherwise be lost and forgotten.

“Echoing the 3 Rs, recycled, renewable and rusty, my process either starts with a story and I find its parts, or I find a part and the story finds me. The work sometimes reveals itself piece by piece, and I wait for that 50-year-old barnyard object at the bottom of a long-dead farmer’s scrap heap to fully realize my vision. Everything Falk learned, he learned from A to Z. Luckily for the rest of us, non-self-sufficient, burning midnight oil people, he chose the art route to show off his many acquired skills.

Edwin Falk isn’t just an artist, he’s a historian, environmentalist, and overall a really smart, good-natured, humble human being. Not to mention he was once a resident of Little Falls. We hope that he will tell us about his art, his approach and his journey from repairer to living creator of the earth. MVCArts is open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. at 403 Canal Place, Little Falls, NY 13365.

Call 315-823-0808 for more information or to schedule an appointment. The opening coincides with the Art Walk which will take place the same evening.

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