Gallery Bershad  •  sommerville/boston  •

Artist's Statement and Biography


sherwood-head.jpg (9152 bytes)
photo by Christopher Minnes

Art Summary:

A native of Johnson City, Tennessee, Will Sherwood has a multi-paletted career: engineer, musician, artist/photographer. He graduated from Carnegie-Mellon University with BSEE and MSEE degrees in computer engineering, and has Choirmaster and Associate degrees from the American Guild of Organists.  He has appeared as guest soloist with the Boston Pops and has given many concerts in both the U.S. and Europe.

During the week, he is a Sr. Engineering Manager at Compaq Computer Corporation (formerly Digital) where he is manager of the Alpha Microprocessor Verification Group. In addition, he is Organist-Choirmaster at First Unitarian Church, Worcester, Mass, and a freelance jazz and classical pianist.  Other interests include volunteering for local homeless agencies, graphic arts, running, organic gardening, and preparing gourmet vegetarian cuisine.

During childhood, his family encouraged his interests in music, photography, and the sciences.  Photography was a serious avocation of his father in the 1950s and 60s, and he taught Will black-and-white camera and darkroom techniques.

Photographic Statement:

Sherwood is drawn to his photography from several perspectives that build on one other:

  • Light painting, textures, shadows, image ambiguity, rhythm, and flow;
  • The photographic process technical aspects and possibilities; and
  • The aesthetic and emotional appeal and connection with the subject matter.

His exploratory usage of perspective, macro, texture, and shadow combine to both delight and startle the viewer.

Neon Art Statement:
Sherwood's work
displays a wide range of treatments and techniques, from simple linear two-ended designs, to multi-faceted and topologically complex pieces. Of particular note is the usage of dry-blown and liquid-applied phosphors. So-called rare earth phosphors (as used in color tv screens) have been enhanced and blended over the last decade to provide an incredible palette for the artist to select from. His blown phosphors provide a nebula-like wisp of sand-textured glow with an occasional skidding comet-tail effect, visible at close range. If the glass has swirls or bends, the colors adhere in interesting streams and patterns. The phosphors applied in liquid form can result in crisp stripes or splattered splotches-- if applied before the glass is bent or twisted, the colors follow the glass, if applied after the glass is formed, the colors can trickle through the tube like water in a stream or rivulet.

Some of these pieces depart from the "traditional" usage of a two-ended tube's linear configuration where there is an electrode providing power at each end of the tube. By using high-frequency, electronic power supplies (rather than the original ballast-like transformer), it's possible to apply power only to one end, and the gas ionizes because of a capacitive effect to the atmosphere or to a human's touch (don't worry, you won't get shocked touching the glass, just don't touch any bare wires!). Thus the glass can emerge into free space, and have several branches or spokes. Yet, on the other end of the one-ended (one-electrode) technique, is the multi-electrodes approach.


BSEE, MSEE Computer Engineering, Carnegie-Mellon University
ChoirMaster and Associate Degrees from American Guild of Organists

Music & Art Experience:

Studied classical pipe organ with: Donald Wilkins, Richard Webb,
                                              Barclay Wood, Brian Jones
Concert tours in the United States and Europe
Guest Soloist with Boston Pops, 1978
Santa Fe Photographic Workshops, Maine Photographic Workshops, Cape Cod Photographic Workshops

One-Person Shows:

Photography: Provincetown Group Gallery, Provincetown, MA, 1997
Neon Art Sculptures: Berta Walker Gallery, Provincetown, MA, 1997
Photography: Wallace Robbins Chapel Gallery, Worcester, MA, 1998

Selected Group Shows:

Photography: Provincetown Group Gallery, Two-person show with Greg Gorman, Provincetown, MA, 1999
Photography: Gallery Five North, Boston, MA, 1999
Photography: Heywood Gallery Group Show, Worcester, MA, 2000
Photography: Princeton Arts Society, Princeton, MA, 1999, First Place; 2000, Honorable Mention

Photography: Gallery Bershad, Somerville, MA, 2000
Photography: PhotoFest2000, Southbridge, MA, 2000, First Place
Photography: Fitchburg Art Museum, Group Show, Fitchburg, MA, 2000
Neon Art Sculptures: ArtSpaces, Utica, NY, 2000.

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