Tonawanda News


September 22, 2013

Jody Hanson's salt drawings are latest TopSpin show at Castellani

LEWISTON — Salt is a lot of things.

First and foremost it’s a foodstuff, a flavor enhancer, a preservative. Doctors might advise you to stay away from it, fancy chefs may have a wide selection of it on hand in their kitchens. It can be mixed with water and administered intravenously to treat dehydration. It’s even been used as a form of currency.

And Jody Hanson has used it as her preferred medium for her latest exhibition, “Imperfect,” a TopSpin series show at the Castellani Art Museum at Niagara University, up through Jan. 12.

The Buffalo resident began her salt drawing series in 2003 when she was living in Salem, Mass., working on the grand re-opening of the Peabody Essex Museum. She spent her evenings mixing solutions of salt — regular table salt, grey Celtic salt and reddish Hawaiian salt — with water. She applied the solutions using paintbrushes and eyedroppers on watercolor paper — which is sturdy enough not to buckle too much when wet — and would wait until morning when the water evaporated to see what formed.

“I was just experimenting with the salt,” Hanson said. “I picked that medium because it as the property of its own motion as it recrystallizes.

“It’s a material that naturally does something on its own” as the water evaporates and the salt recrystallizes into its own, natural structure.

It’s that pure use of salt that Michael Beam, curator of exhibitions and collections at the Castellani, said made him and the TopSpin selection committee want to include her show in the series.

“What first drew me to Jody’s work, to be honest, is that it’s salt and I love salt. I love to eat salt and I love to look at salt and it’s incredibly bad for you in the long run. I’ve always had an attraction, literally, to salt,” he said.

Text Only
  • SUN LIFE Volunteers honored 1 040614.jpg Women Who Move the City (and beyond)

    April 7, 2014 2 Photos

  • SUN LIFE POUND 1040614j jpg.jpg Rock n' roll fitness

    April 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • sig - crib notes RGB Enough of this winter -- it's time for spring

    Midway through separating the bits of dog food from the shredded paper towel pieces on the saturated bed sheet that had been strewn across the dining-room table, I finally realized I’d had enough.

    April 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • sig - critter companions RGB Dear readers, it's me, Kenny

    I have bad knees. I have been told to blame my grandmother. I have also been told to blame her for my love of animals. Today, we celebrate the 100th Critter Companions column.

    April 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • SUN LIFE mummies 1 033014.jpg 'Mummies of the World' exhibit arrives in Buffalo

    As visitors arrived for the recent NCAA basketball tournament games in Buffalo, a much older group of visitors arrived via motorcade at the Buffalo Museum of Science — but these newcomers to the Queen City wouldn’t be seeking out a place to have a beer between games or where to find the region’s best chicken wings.

    March 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • sig - double trouble RGB Years later, still spending sunny days on Sesame Street

    I always knew we’d hit “the Elmo years.”

    Going into parenthood, it seemed like a given. Both my husband and I  were “Sesame Street” fans from childhood ourselves, and we were happy enough to pass it on to a new generation. And we knew, having friends with children of the applicable age, that in this day and age “Sesame Street” equalled Elmo, the squeaky-voiced “furry red menace” (thus dubbed by Oscar the Grouch) of parents everywhere.

    March 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • SUN LIFE Local Restaurant Week 2 033014.jpg Back for another bite

    As spring finally starts to unfold in Western New York, residents are likely eager to get out of their houses — and organizers of Local Restaurant Week hope they’ll consider eating out as they do that.

    March 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wineries invite visitors to take a Taste of the Trail

    If one weekend of food and wine pairings is a good thing, two weekends of food and wine pairings must be even better.

    For the first time, the Taste of the Trail event, which takes place Friday through April 6 and April 11 to 13 on the Niagara Wine Trail, will be split into two weekends, with half the trail’s wineries taking part the first weekend and half the second, said Elizabeth Maute, wine trail coordinator.

    March 31, 2014

  • sig - critter companions RGB CRITTER COMPANIONS: Rewards for playing nice

    March 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • SUN LIFE signs of spring 1 032314.jpg Region's favorite signs of spring gear up for season

    Ah, the signs of spring: The birdsong, the flowers, the green grass, the flowing waters of the Erie Canal or Niagara River ... and the words “Opening soon” on the marquee of your favorite seasonal business.

    March 24, 2014 1 Photo