As Music at Kohl began searching for the right visual expression of this Virtual Season, we had the opportunity to visit the beautiful Filoli Gardens, our neighbors down the Peninsula. We were captivated by the mesmerizing work of wire sculptor Kristine Mays, now on exhibit at Filoli through November 9, 2020. Inspired by the dancers of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, the exhibit, titled “Rich Soil”, is a monument to this moment in time. Intricately assembled from thousands of small pieces of wire, the sculptures breathe in the wind and the light, while seeming to dance and float to an unheard concert in the middle of nature. Their transparency evokes the presence of the performers, but the performers are absent. Yet like music, they offer their powerful stories. We could not envision a more poignant symbol of this time of virtual and imagined realities, of ethereal concerts and almost mystical human (dis)connection across the airwaves.

“As an artist I am very aware of the impermanence of life. With metal wire I have timelessly captured a fleeting moment that I hope will last for decades. My artwork points to the soul and spirit, transporting the viewer into another place. It’s about reconnecting to a deeper purpose — the soul and spirit of our lives. I transform hard rigid wire into soft flowing movement. I create the outer shell, the exterior of a human being, but provoke you to see what’s within. Memories and the way we have loved one another far outweigh our status or possessions — and yet sometimes a simple dress or a body in motion may trigger a memory from the past, allowing us to visit that which has imprinted our lives.” – Kristine Mays

To symbolize our 2020-21 Virtual Concerts, Music at Kohl is honored to feature a quartet of lyrical dancers from a grouping entitled “Ancestral Spin” by San Francisco sculptor Kristine Mays.