The Cogs & Wheels Project presents “Gathering”

First Annual Exhibition at the Historic City Laundry

May 10 and 11, 2013

901B Pollock Street

This weekend, Laura Johnson and I visited the Historic City Laundry to learn about the Cogs and Wheels project spearheaded by Blake Wiggs, Teacher at Craven Early College and Jane Horner, Lead Artist.

I’ve heard that Kathy Adolph was working on the Historic City Laundry on Pollock Street, but I didn’t know about the Cogs and Wheels community art project until I spoke with Blake Wiggs.

Blake told us that the Cogs and Wheels is an ongoing project and each year they will choose 21st Century challenge that affects our community and try to confront it using fine arts. This year they chose storm water runoff, water quality, and plastic accumulation in our watersheds

Below is a summary of the project and exhibits provided by Blake Wiggs:

Friday, May 10, 2013 from 5pm – 8pm

Opening reception the evening of New Bern’s Artwalk. “Gathering” will be open to the public to celebrate the completion of a large interactive, multimedia installation sculpture. Over the past four months, parents, students, and teachers from Craven County Schools have been working on Saturdays from 9 – noon under the direction of Blake Wiggs and artist Jane E. Horner.  The reception will be held at the Historic City Laundry Building located at 901-B Pollock Street.

May 11, 2013 from 11am – 2pm

Environmental & Educational Outreach – the exhibit will be open to the public. This surprising art installation is a unique FREE Saturday event for families and the public at large to enjoy. The Neuse Riverkeeper Foundation, Engineers from the City of New Bern, Coastal Environmental Partnership, various other environmental groups, and artist Bonnie Monteleone will be on site to answer questions about storm water runoff issues in Craven County.

Community Partners: Craven Arts Council and Gallery Inc., Neuse Riverkeeper Foundation, Craven County Schools, Kathy & Peter Adolph, and Bern Investment Group, Inc.

Works on Exhibit

“Bottled Messages” was originally intended to be a classroom project, and will be installed in a large tree adjacent to the 901-B building. Teachers and students from Craven Early College and Early College EAST have constructed fifteen strands of 100 plastic bottles, each with a message inside. It is our vision that this sculpture will travel to schools and classrooms as a method of visually representing US plastic bottle consumption per second.

“Shine On” is a collaborative installation sculpture led by artist Jane E. Horner.  It looks wet. Hundreds of plastic spirals spill down from the ceilings, and there are long stretches of shimmering transparency.  Projected through these materials is a video of water, of the artwork throughout the process of its creation, and an audio track of what the “Bottled Messages” are saying. Its intention is beauty and truth.

“What Comes Around, Goes Around” The presence of plastics in our oceans has proven to be a significant threat to marine life, navigational safety, and a potential health risk to humans. Using some of the plastics Bonnie Monteleone has collected from her near 10,000 nautical miles (nm) experiences at sea; she has created 25 feet of canvas art.  The exhibit combines science with art to illustrate the compromised environment for the sake of convenience and how discarded plastics can come back in a not-so convenient way.

For more information, visit the Cogs and Wheels project’s website:

It was a pleasure meeting Blake Wiggs, Jane Horner, Bonnie Monteleone, and Nell Maha. We’re looking forward to coming back during Artwalk!

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Wendy Card