Friday Discovery – Art in Progress

Joe Mangrum - Sand Art

Joe Mangrum – Sand Art

There’s nothing better than stumbling across Art in Progress. I’m doing some freelance editing at a great design studio here in Chicago called Leviathan and I stepped outside for a moment to clear my head and almost tripped over it.

Joe Mangrum is an artist who works in the beautifully temporary medium of sand. I watched him work for a few minutes, reaching into various bags of colored sand and scooping out a handful to gracefully sift through his hand. Beautiful fluid motion to watch happen.

If it’s windy or if someone walks over his work, it’s destroyed. I love his confidence in making something that only a few people might see before the elements decide it’s over.

If you’re interested in seeing more of his work, he’s part of a group show opening tonight at Linda Warren Projects in Chicago’s West Loop.

And you can follow Joe on Twitter @joemangrum.

Joe Mangrum - Sand Art in Progress

Joe Mangrum – Sand Art in Progress

About an hour later, on the way out to join some co-workers for a BBQ, Joe had made some serious progress.

Joe Mangrum - Nearing Completion

Joe Mangrum – Nearing Completion

And on the way home from the BBQ, hours later around 11pm, I walked past the darkened sidewalk to find Joe’s completed piece. The wind had died down, so nature didn’t seem to have any plans of removing the carefully placed grains of sand. And it appears the opening night gallery crowd managed to avoid stepping on it as well. Art survived it’s first evening in the elements!

You’ll have to pardon the quality of this last iPhone photo. The flash wasn’t quite powerful enough to light up the entire sidewalk. But you get the idea.

Joe Mangrum - The finished piece

Joe Mangrum – The finished piece


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