Focus on Art and Creativity: Musings at the Museum

On Wednesday, after Linda and I perused the lovely flowers, overwhelmed at the variety, color and texture of mother nature’s artwork, we traveled over to the CAM (Contemporary Art Museum) located at 409 W. Martin Street in Downtown Raleigh.040 - Copy It is a spacious and well-lit facility with windows placed in strategic places to let the  light  flow in. We had viewed nature’s art, now it was time to delve into art created by the hand of man.

There were two artists exhibited:Alistair McClymont  and Ryan Travis Christian.

Alistair McClymont is a British artist who works in sculpture, photography and video. His exhibit was entitled, Everything We Are Capable of Seeing.  His vision is interesting, ranging from a model he built which keeps a tiny raindrop suspended in mid-air McClymont to huge McClymontsculptures made of piling MDF boards in interesting patterns. His interest in finding a connection between art and science is exemplified by his tornado series of paintings and his tornado making machine.


Tornado Machine


The second exhibitor was Ryan Travis Christian. This fellow is obsessed with lines and patterns. He basically builds his vision around diagonal lines and a pair of googly eyes.


the lower floor taken from up above


close up of the googly eyes

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I Guess You Had to be There

His exhibit is entitled Well Here We Aren’t Again and consists of a floor covered in diagonal lines and some surreal drawings, one a large panel called   I Guess You Had To Be There (small section of the panel  below)




My musings as I toured this museum:

Whether or not this art form appeals to you, it is an example of 2 people expressing themselves, celebrating our gift for creativity in a positive way. Contrast this with the 2 young men who have wrought havoc in Boston these past days. Instead of putting something useful out there, they choose to maim and destroy. What a waste of the precious life they were given. Thankfully, there are more people in the first group, people who contribute to this world, and make their life matter.

I’ve heard about a quote from Mr. Rogers bandied about lately and it has a powerful message for those of us overwhelmed by what seems to be a continually rising threat of evil in the world today. Mr. Rogers says:

When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” To this day, especially in times of “disaster,” I remember my mother’s words and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers – so many caring people in this world.(

I think of the firefighters running into the towers on 9/11; the doctors who were running in the marathon in Boston helping the injured; the teachers who gave their lives to protect the innocent children in New Town and I am comforted by Mr. Rogers words. There are a lot of caring people in the world. People who share their gifts and their vision in a positive way. We must celebrate them, emulate them, and teach our children to be kind, to be helpers and maybe one day the evil in this world will be vanquished.



  1. Pat – after reading your CAM blog, I am more and more convinced that you should send this blog on to the N&O. Like right now! Your observations on how 4 people handled their lives – 2 creatively and 2 tragically – are SO POIGNANT!!! Please go on line and send this the newspaper!! Plus it is a lovely promotion for Raleigh’s CAM!

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