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Whimsical Wood Assemblage Art

Greg Jaris creates various objects out of wood.

Greg Jaris has always had a natural curiosity for objects in and around nature. That interest has inspired him to create and build objects in various mediums throughout his life--yet wood seems to be his material of choice. His construction skills, acquired from boat building, allowed him to create just about anything out of wood, from sculpture to furniture. His representational assemblages are colorfully painted and varying in themes. Mosaic embellishments are often found in his work. All of his whimsical pieces are hand-sculpted and constructed at his playful studio/gallery/coffeehouse known as Trick Dog--a place where folks are expected to "unleash themselves". The studio is nestled in the dunes of Lake Michigan, overlooking Betsy Bay. It is a majestic location for onlookers to watch Greg create his fanciful art on the porch.

He starts each assemblage by creating a sketch of his vision. Then he constructs a scale model out of wood, cardboard, and paint. Once he believes his sketch can be replicated in sculpture, he marks and draws on wood with crayons, chalk or pencil and cuts out the marked pieces using an electric saw. Greg assembles the wood pieces with fasteners and makes any necessary adjustments to the original design at this point. Then he paints and stains the sculpture using brushes, rollers, spray cans and even his fingers. His sculpture is then often embellished with moving parts, chiseled carvings and drawings. Once complete, the sculpture can join the rest of his works in an installation of functional furniture, mobiles, hanging canvases and tabletop pieces--not to mention dogs flying across the sky. Greg believes that art should be uplifting and celebrate the positive moments in everyday life, such as a trip to the beach, walking a dog or setting off fireworks. These are the moments he has captured in his witty and humorous art.

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