The island is buzzing with talk of renowned artist Todd Andrew Babb’s exhibit “Vagrant: The Process of Being,” which debuted in BIG ARTS Phillips Gallery. The show, which Babb designed specifically for the space in Phillips Gallery, featured all new works by the artist. Before the reception Babb gave a moving artist talk as he discussed his inspiration, process and what this show means to him.   
 
“The appearance of my work is meant to capture a sense of motion to illustrate progress and evolution,” said Babb on his vision for the show. “I feel compelled to produce work that is approachable aesthetically, yet at the same time, forces the viewer to think more critically about concepts beyond our physical realm.” 
 
“This show in its entirety is meant to project the ideologies of progression,” he continued. “While each piece moves independently, they are all meant to move together and flow as an entity of their own. The flow is cyclical. There is no beginning and no end. Each piece moves from one to the other. The viewer can start anywhere within the space and be led in an ebb and flow throughout.”
 
Babb highlights an extraordinary season for BIG ARTS Fine Arts program that featured high profile artists, Art Vibe and the upcoming Gallery Bus Hop. “We are committed to bringing in world class artists from our community and beyond,” said Executive Director Lee Ellen Harder. “We’ve had some amazing talent this season that is just a joy to share with the island community.” 
 
The show which features sculpture, paintings and sketches hugs the walls of Phillips Gallery as it leads patrons through Babb’s artistic vision. “As with all creation, I began with basic elements,” said Babb. “At its core, my work represents the mind, body, and, soul of humanity as well as how these aspects of the human condition evolve and progress in our physical world. With that, I visualized individual pieces in the space and let the feel of the room guide my thoughts.” 
 
The gallery space itself also played a role in the process of creating the show, as Babb describes, “At first, I saw the flow as linear. One side of the room would represent simplicity, basic forms, colorless and limited in motion. The opposing wall would be full of color, detail, and movement. The two walls in between would show a progression from the first, basic works, to those of more complexity. I started to sketch pieces inspired by this notion. As I continued, the show began to take on a circular motion.  Each sculpture and painting would lead the viewer from one to the next. Furthermore, the flow from one piece to the next could work in either clockwise or counterclockwise directions. From there I was able to create the show in its entirety.”
 
During his talk Babb elaborated on what this show meant to him personally. 
 
“Creating this show was very important to me,” he said. “It allowed me to utilize a space to illustrate my personal philosophy on existence.  Additionally, this venue is particularly close to my heart. I grew up in Southwest Florida and spent most of my summer days on Sanibel Island. The influence of BIG ARTS and Sanibel, as a whole, on my life and growth as a person and artist are immeasurable.”
 
Vagrant: The Process of Being is currently on display in Phillips Gallery. It can be viewed Monday through Friday from 1-4 PM and Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more information, visit www.bigarts.org, email info@bigarts.org or call the box office at 239-395-0900.