Froid’Art exhibit returns in 3D

Martello Alley event back in a new format

Event entering its seventh year.
Supplied by David Dossett

After taking a year off due to COVID-19 restrictions, Martello Alley’s annual Froid’Art exhibit has returned for its seventh year.

Owner of Martello Alley, David Dossett, ArtSci ’83, spoke to The Journal about Froid’Art’s integration of 3D display technology.

“It's a unique event,” Dossett said in an interview. “Nobody [hosts] art events like this where you have art in the ice, everybody else [carves it].”

In previous years Froid’Art showed art blocks as pieces of plexiglass encapsulated in 300-pound ice blocks. Instead, Dossett has chosen to place a transparent film from Lux Labs inside a block of ice where this year’s art pieces will be projected.

“We're using some really cool technology that I don't think anyone's ever done before,” Dossett said. “It’s neat because we're kind of pushing the edge of the envelope.”

Martello Alley’s virtual tour allows viewers to see fully three-dimensional images of the art blocks from the safety of their homes, wherever they may be.

“Now, [the pieces] are never going to melt [before people can see them] because they're going to be visible all the time,” Dossett said. “People will see what they look like from day one.”

Dossett admitted adopting the new technology has had its challenges.

“It’s a 360 camera, [which takes one picture of everything].  It's [using] the same [lighting] conditions all around [and] sometimes you get a really good picture of the block, but you can't even see the building in the background or vice versa.”

The display includes 21 pieces, with some artists contributing multiple works.

“Because of COVID and everything else, it's been harder to reach out to some of the artists because they’re not available,” Dossett said. “So, some of the artists have been kind enough to [contribute] more than one [piece].”

Dossett is thankful for the Kingston community’s support—remaining in the public eye has allowed Martello Alley to continue supporting local artists.

“January and February are kind of slower months for retail, especially for a little gallery like this,” he said. “[Froid’Art] keeps us in the public eye and helps spread the word about us.”

Froid’Art is focused on exposing people to extraordinary artwork in a new, unique way.

“Creativity takes courage, and that's what I think art is about—taking risks,” Dossett said.

“[Froid’Art] is a perfect example of that, it was either going to be a great success, or I would have gone down in flames. Fortunately, it's worked out.”

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