Information about certain works or bodies of work is below. More is indicated throughout the site and further clarified via the Extended Statement. Two essays about my work are available HERE (authored by Charles Garoian) and HERE (authored by Cyril Reade).
PRINT SERIES All the works in Print Series involve processes that require inscription, layering on, embossment, transferal and transformation – processes I associate with memory and means of recollection. Images recall objects and the accompanying text narrates the objects’ association with personally significant individuals. The text on the prints reads as follows – left to right.
- CHAIR – He shifted on the burgundy naugahyde to give me space, not on his lap but next to it. He smelled of work – flux and welded metal.
- ANVIL – Without effort he squared it on his shoulder and climbed the ladder one-handedly. He put it in the garage and it was never used.
- CHANGE PURSE – “Bedspred. Bedspread. Beadspred. Here it is. There it is. Ha Ha Ha.”
- TOY BLOCKS – Brief fictions and wooden blocks busied me. The chameleon moved unseen among the plant and the lace curtains and the smell of cancer. I never knew her.
- THERMOS – His fingers, some of them stubs, grasped his half emptied thermos as he leaned under the arch of the kitchen entry, “Lets hit the bricks Annie.”
- TEA KETTLE – “She fell – she passed out. It fell on the floor and she fell on it – burned her.”
- TEA KETTLE –“She’d burn the bottom of her pots and then she’d hide them under the bush so we didn’t know what she did. She knew something was wrong but she didn’t want us to know it and then she’d be surprised later on when we went out and saw them there. We’d ask her about it and she’d start laughin’ and saying things that she didn’t know how they got there. It was a Hydrangea.”
IMPRINTS The works in this series employ standard domestic-use products. The linear representation – the drawings – of vacuum cleaners has been formed by the removal of material and a replacement with a commonly associated filler i.e. caulking with the ceramic tiles and wood-filler with the wooden paneling. In the process, the representations slip from clear cogency toward fragmented recognition.
LIVING THE DREAM (1) I had the opportunity to describe my domestic situation to a friend I had not spoken to in some time. “You’re living the dream,” she said. I was amused by her comment. While it was for me, to some degree, true, I also found it to be a bit uncomfortable. Privileged situations often prompt disconcertion. Fortune and misfortune, as well as presence and absence, are so easily associated in the scarcity of either.
The components of this installation include objects that are functional, objects that are art (or materials for the making of art), and many that posture themselves tenuously between both categories. The common visual characteristics the works share with everyday objects as well as their placement near things from my home and studio are intended to establish an initial degree of viability with the viewer and then a subsequent violation of the expected upon closer observation. The visual aspect of the video (in the first iteration of this work) documents evidence (marks, dust stencils, indentations, etc.) and spaces left by the removal of some of the objects from my home and studio. The audio aspect is appropriated from home movies – they both serve to bridge the gallery space with that of the domestic. This idea’s iteration was installed at the Pyramid Art Center in Rochester, NY. in 1996.
FLOATING SUBURBIA Floating Suburbia addresses the suburban landscape and its slow and unremitting encroachment into areas previously governed by the precise balances of ‘real’ nature. The peculiar simulacrum we call our lawn simultaneously imitates and obliterates nature to the advantage of luxury and display; we maintain an unrelenting greed for the spaces that define our socio-economic status and support our egos. The sprawl itself and the processes involved in its maintenance jeopardizes our forests, endangers our waterways and undermines our agricultural base. The ‘American Dream’ governs our insatiable desire for land — one can easily imagine the eventual transgression of spaces that require extreme control and design — airborne yards with simulated earth or floating lawns with hybridized sod.
This work was the result of collaborative effort between Bradley Gale, an industrial designer and myself. This proposal was accepted and commissioned as part of the Art Afloat exhibition curated by the Erie Art Museum; it sponsored five works that were selected from a nation-wide call for proposals. They were installed in a guarded inlet harbor of Lake Erie.