Corey Collins first came to The Gallery at Lighthouse in 2009 with an exhibition entitled Fighting Gravity. The show was a tortured, confused rendering of the artist’s struggle with sleep deprivation, hallucinations, and bouts of overmedication.
Collins continues work in mixed media in Maintaining Air.
Using industrial materials typically found in a hardware store, including oil, latex, and spray paint, wire, metal, and spray foam, Collins creates a lighter counterpart to Gravity, the message of which intends to ground his audience in the present.
“The problem was all the fighting of this gravity and trying to overcome it,” Collins wrote in his artist biography. “The trick to flying is to…stop running around like if you go fast enough you’ll take off, and just look around.”
Strong progress has been made between the two shows. Collins walks the line between creativity and chaos well and strikes a balance between structure, intention, and pure recklessness. Gone are the days of forlorn, desperation, and loneliness. In their place: a whimsical, primal, and bold science.
“It’s real interesting seeing raw creativity from this young man,” said Francine Bernard. “You can tell his life has been turned around by this art.”
“It’s great for kids to see this,” she continued. “Of course, it’s the adults that need to tap into their creative side.”
Still, both the art and the artist seem to dance around more serious overtones in the work without confronting issues head on. It’s one thing to stay in the moment, it’s quite another to be petrified.
Progress will certainly build to a wonderful trilogy at the gallery.
Until then, Collins makes for a dashing young Icarus: first flying by the sheaths of a mad craftsman, then falling with melted wax blinded by his own hubris.
The Lighthouse Voc-Ed Center is a special education program for students ages 7-21. The program provides students with moderate to severe disabilities opportunities for community-based learning to foster independence and improve social communication skills.
The Gallery at Lighthouse opened in September 2008. It works to provide Voc-Ed Center students opportunities for community interaction and social and life development skills. It also serves as a venue for students to show their work.
The gallery is open from 12-5pm Monday through Friday and Saturday by appointment.