OREM — Kelly Thurgood works in bronze, but before a piece is cast he carves it in detail in wood.

Most sculptors use clay to create their original pieces, but Thurgood gets more detail from wood, particularly Tupelo wood.

"I am a realist. Every detail needs to be in place and accounted for," he said. "If it was put there by the Creator it has a reason for being there."

Thurgood is displaying a sculpture of chickadee and grouse and several photos at the Terra Nova Gallery exhibition that features birds.

"Birds of a Feather" will show works from Thurgood, Brett Larsen, Rebecca Lee, Dahrl Thomson and Rebecca Wagstaff, all birds in oil, photo, colored pencil or sculpture.

"The exhibit, which includes both 2-D and 3-D works, encompasses a variety of styles and medium, from the delicate, realistic creations of Thurgood to the bold, stylized works of Dahrl Thomson," said museum owner David Hawkinson.

Thurgood lost most of his hearing at 16 from shotgun blasts near his head. That tragedy led to a sharpening of his other senses and an acute awareness.

Often he's at work two hours after sunrise photographing wildlife to use in an upcoming art project. Sometimes he hauls out his camera and its 400mm lens to shoot a couple of hours before sunset. Both times are best for photographing wildlife because the low sun enhances their colors, he said.

His original carvings are not for sale. He uses them to create molds from which he casts a limited number of bronze pieces.

Thomson, too, works in a medium other than clay before she casts her bronze sculptures. She creates in stone.

Thomson uses a plethora of power tools, including grinders with diamond tips, and spends hours sanding. It takes her a few weeks to a few months to complete a sculpture. Her art has a modern twist — the bird sculpture she is displaying is undefinable, except "you can tell it's a bird," she said. Thomson also does pieces that are more abstract and favors female figures, fish and eels in addition to birds.

Her bird sculpture stands 22.5 inches tall, including its black granite base. Another is a white Italian Carrara marble sculpture named "Inclined to Stay."

Rebecca Lee of Woods Cross is known for her work in colored pencil, but she also works in oils and acrylics.

She submitted four pieces in colored pencil to the Terra Nova exhibition, a group of mallard ducks, a white pelican, snowy egret and a rough-legged hawk.

"I'm mostly inspired by nature ... and things in the natural world," she said.

Hawkinson invited Rebecca Wagstaff of Tropic to submit a contemporary realism still life oil painting that includes an Australian spotted duck. She is married to artist Clay Wagstaff and was featured with him in the July issue of Southwest Art magazine.

She exhibits her work at Terzian Galleries in Park City and David Ericson Fine Art in Salt Lake City.

If you go

What: "Birds of a Feather" exhibit

Where: Terra Nova Gallery, 41 W. 300 North

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When: Sept. 1-Oct. 27 (opening reception Sept. 1, 6-9 p.m.)

Cost: Free


E-mail: rodger@desnews.com

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