Brooke Barrie’s 'Mary' is sited along the edge of the arborvitae hedge wall surrounding the large “Sculpture Pad” in the center of the park. The placement of this work in this location not only creates an interesting dialogue with other figurative works nearby (Leonda Finke’s two 'Women in the Sun' figures and Dorothy Ruddick’s 'Number II'), but symbolically, placing Barrie’s work in the center of the park also points to Barrie’s role in the organization. As the inaugural Director and Curator, she had been at the heart of Grounds For Sculpture’s success as a non-profit arts organization since its inception in 1992.
'Mary', which was among many works gifted to Grounds For Sculpture from The Seward Johnson Atelier in 2015, was cast in 1984. Made of ribbon-like lines of bronze, it depicts a female figure lying in a casual pose. Rather than filling in the entire form, Barrie outlined the shape and created areas of negative space, inviting the viewer to complete the picture.
Of her work Barrie said,
“Bronze allows me to cast thin, open forms and present a more spatially involved reference to the figure. Positive and negative space weaves in, out and around, with the strength of the metal providing for tenuous extensions of form and line into space”.