Exploration of Love: A Review of “Feathering Heights” by Frederick Hovey at ARC Gallery

Frederick Hovey, “Spooky’s Tail feathers, Collage 66″/Courtesy of the gallery

Frederick Hovey’s latest exhibition of large abstract and otherworldly giclée prints is a personal exploration of love.

“Feathering Heights” is a play on “Wuthering Heights” for its slant rhyme, but is really a deep homage to his late African Gray Parrot, Spooky, who he lived with for twenty-nine years.

His latest work of photo vignettes, which are recolored and collaged into digital 12,000-by-18,000 pixel sheet layers at 250 DPI, immerse viewers into an alliterative play on color and visual imagery.

After Hovey’s career was halted due to his grief, he looked up one day at fifteen pictures of Spooky arrayed across the wall above his desk and knew his next art project. He did, however, focus on just the feathers.

“Boom, the easiest and best decision I’ve probably ever made,” he says.

Hovey had saved around 500 of Spooky’s molted feathers and began creating the photo vignettes that he is still working with today. Using multiple light sources and angles to shoot the feathers, he creates sixty-to-one-hundred pieces from each vignette and then multiplies them by nine discrete color changes. The most current pieces are using the patterns found on the tail-feather sheets to create the cells.

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