Clinton Snider's "Sleeping Potential" reveals small wonders at Popps Packing

arts / Article

"Billboard" (2015) by Clinton Snider.

Artist Clinton Snider is best known for his moody landscapes and portraits—blue/green toned images that overlap the whimsy of children’s book-style illustrations, a cadre of offbeat characters, and the poignancy of vacant landscapes.

A few small examples of Snider's painted work (2012).

A few small examples of Snider's painted work (2012).

In “Sleeping Potential,” a new collection of work will be on display at Popps Packing through April 11, Snider reveals some of his perennial themes in a new medium: resin-cast landscapes rendered in miniature. Tiny houses occupy disintegrating cardboard boxes and sit atop mushrooms and piles of matches, carving out imagined spaces within the detritus of the everyday.

Valley of Bones (Resurrection) (2015)

"Valley of Bones (Resurrection)," 2015.

Flashpoint (Strike Anywhere) (2015)

"Flashpoint (Strike Anywhere)," 2015.

Juxtaposed with these miniature domiciles, Snider has a series of painstakingly dilapidated and painted metal signs. Though not in the same scale as the houses and billboards reworked from his haunting paintings, the signs are still miniatures relative to their real-world counterparts. Some, like "God’s (Holiness Church of Deliverance)" imitate the slow redaction by time of their original messaging. Others, such as "Hotel Yorba" are intensively layered with figurative, Bosch-like imagery.

God's (Holiness Church of Deliverance) (2015)

"God's (Holiness Church of Deliverance)," 2015.

Hotal Yorba (2012-15)

"Hotel Yorba," 2012-15.

Drugs Liquor Prescriptions (2012-15)

"Drugs Liquor Prescriptions," 2012-15.

All of Snider’s work in “Sleeping Potential” taps into his core struggle between history and memory, carving worlds out of ephemera, no less real for being imagined.

Popps Jr. having a close (but not touching) encounter with Mushroom (2015)

Popps Jr. having a close encounter (but not touching!) with "Mushroom," 2015.

Off the gallery on opening night on March 21, a few devoted Hamtramckans were engaged in the second of four workshops being held to create bike-floats and objects for the upcoming Porous Borders Festival, sponsored by Hinterlands Theatre Ensemble and the Knight Foundation. These creations will be on display in the opening parade, which will be held along Carpenter Street on May 16th at 11 a.m., part of the weekend-long celebration and examination of the fluid relationship between Hamtramck and the surrounding city of Detroit.

Parade-makings in progress at Popps.

Parade-makings in progress at Popps.

Further workshops to make parade floats will be held from 1-4 p.m. on April 4 at the Hatch Artist Collective (3456 Evaline St.), and at the same time on April 18 at Play House (12657 Moran St.). Great work by Popps Packing, working to increase wonder in the world on the small and large scale.

Popps Packing: 12138 St. Aubin, Hamtramck; 313-733-6793;

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