Roy Patterson’s “Cloaked Figure” Roy Patterson

Gray sculptor Roy Patterson’s granite sculpture, “Cloaked Figure,” is about to find a new home in Yarmouth.

The 6¼-foot-tall piece will be installed on a black granite base between Merrill Memorial Library and the Route 1 bridge next month, said Linda Horstmann, co-chairperson of the Yarmouth Arts Alliance’s Public Art Committee.

“I can’t just let stone be, I have to interact with it,” says sculptor Roy Patterson of Gray. LContributed / Roy Patterson

“I can’t just let stone be, I have to interact with it,” Patterson said, describing the first time he saw the granite he used for “Cloaked Figure.”

The piece of granite was lying in a field, he said, and it reminded him of ancient standing stones from Scotland.

“They have an incredible presence,” he said.

The “Cloaked Figure” imagery came to him upon observing the stone.

“I followed the contours of what the stone suggested and it looked like a figure wearing a cloak,” he said.

He created the sculpture in 2007. Ann Waldron of Southwest Harbor saw it at an exhibition and purchased it for her home, but last year, in the process of moving, she decided to donate it as public art.

Patterson got in touch with the Yarmouth Arts Alliance last October to discuss a new placement for the sculpture. Horstmann was interested in working him again after having installed his piece “Night” at the Yarmouth History Center in 2019.

The exact installation date of “Cloaked Figure” and its dedication ceremony depends on when Public Works can lay the foundation, Horstmann said. The Waldron family has agreed to pay for the new base and paid for the sculpture’s moving costs.

Patterson has been a sculptor since 1973 when he got a job as a jade carver in Vancouver, British Columbia, Since then, he has been sculpting figurative pieces, in which he aims to represent two elements: the human form and the natural presence of stone.

Patterson likes his stone left alone to an extent, so that its natural form isn’t completely transformed. He draws inspiration from the Japanese, who he said create art by simply arranging stone rather than by carving it, he said.

His passion for sculpture stems from his desire to comment on the human experience.

“Art is the antithesis of the destructive forces that cause so much suffering in this word,” he said. “Artists, art collectors and arts organizations share the responsibility to support and nourish creative energy.”

He’s currently working on some smaller stone pieces and bronze wall-hangings.

The Yarmouth Arts Alliance’s Public Art Committee was formed in 2018 with the goal of bringing public art to Main Street over the next five years, Horstmann said.

“Over the past two years the alliance has been documenting locations along Main Street to the Royal River on Route 88 for the possible placement of sculpture,” she said.

Current initiatives by the Yarmouth Arts Alliance also include “EARTH,” a virtual pop-up art gallery in honor of Earth Day on Facebook and Instagram available until May 31, with proceeds to benefit the alliance’s scholarship fund, and “Mother’s Day Plein Air Art Share” scheduled for May 8, which encourages  residents to create and share art in their front yards. Email [email protected]  for more information.

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