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Sullivan Goss Ltd. Gallery is proud to present a collection of new sculptures by local artist Peter Cole. Cole’s packhorses and "power objects" marry African accumulative and medicinal figures, which normally invoke ancestral power, with popular American life, its symbols and its detritus. They meld meaning and form, fragments and icons, collections and display. Neither simple nor neat, these images are richly textural. They are also texts restless with commentary on life and art. Often playful and irreverent, this art is also serious, staking out its territory with a deeply felt presence.

Cole has been exhibiting his work since his first solo show in 1989 at the Boulder Artist’s Gallery in Colorado. He earned an MFA in sculpture at The San Francisco Art Institute in 1994, and was active in San Francisco’s alternative gallery scene until 1999, when he relocated to Santa Barbara. His most recent exhibitions comprise a trio of collaborative installations in Germany and Vienna in 1999 and 2000, with art luminaries Mark Dion, Alexis Rockman, and Bob Braine. The installations were life-sized recreations of the jungle camp, in which the four artists lived and worked, in equatorial Guyana in 1998.

Cole’s work resides in a number of private collections, including those of lawyer Lani Guinier, poets Anne Waldman and Anne Carson, African art collector Barry Kitnick, Fowler Museum director Marla Berns, museum curator Phil Linhares and director of the Headlands Center for the Arts Kathryn Reasoner. A collection of one hundred and eight individually framed pieces of ephemera, including shopping lists and hand-drawn maps, was recently purchased by the Oakland Museum of Art, and is now on permanent display. Peter Cole is also author of a series of popular and best selling books from Chronicle Books. The newest being Great Pumpkins, Crafty Carving for Halloween.

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