Nature is Art

Beauty, we are told, is in the eye of the beholder. So for some beauty is a sunset.  For others, it’s a sports car or a diamond.  For Robert Wiener, Chairman of Maxx Properties and ArtsWestchester board member, beauty is a geode.  For more than 40 years, Wiener has been collecting geodes, some 2,000 of which adorn lit cases in both his home and office. A selection of these geodes will be on display at the Rye Arts Center from April 20 to May 24.

People describe geodes differently.  I’ve heard it humorously called nature’s Tootsie Pop because it has a surprise center when you get to the middle. Basically, however, a geode is a rock that is formed in a hole in the earth or in the bubble of a volcano.  And indeed, the center is most always a dazzling array of crystals, sometimes quartz, often amethyst, but always breathtaking.  Says Wiener: “I regard them as God’s creation of tremendous power and sensual beauty.”

Wiener first discovered geodes, (where else?), but in a museum. “Nature is art” says Wiener as he reflects on the process that uncovers geodes. “The geodes are buried in veins of rock hundreds of feet below the earth’s surface, solidly entrenched in less beautiful rock. They have to be extracted by cutting, hammering, and even blasting. Though solid, the geodes can be compromised or destroyed by the shock of the excavation process, which often shatters the geodes or leaves them surrounded by jagged pieces of rock.” This exhibition is a testament to the expert “eye” of Robert Wiener, and the idea that a rock can be a beautiful thing.  Thank you Rye Arts Center, for taking the art of the rock to a new level, melding art and science in a stunning exhibit.

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