12 September 2007

I Know I'm A Day Late, But...

World Trade Center aluminum fa├žade fragment, "Here Is New York: Remembering 9/11" New York Historical Society

How could I let such an inappropriate example of fetishization pass by unnoticed?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perhaps off the subject, I saw your your piece at Socrates and congrats on the press! It was one of the rare moments I gave a piece there some time. Even further off the subject do you have any suggestions how I could bury the beams into the wall at Winkleman Gallery a quarter inch?


14 September, 2007 23:58  
Blogger fisher6000 said...

Hey, Tom

Congratulations yourself on a *fucking beautiful* show that is getting its own deserved notice!

Do you want to bury the beams? As it is, your work is doing something specific with fit that you would lose if you buried the beams.

It would become more about opticality and slicing, and less about exact distances and math and how you did it.

What's your goal?

Thanks for stopping in, Deb

15 September, 2007 08:58  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, if you can allow me to do away with the art talk for a moment, heres how it goes. I get an idea for a piece, after that you have to figure out how you can do it, if it can be done at all. Technical problems often arise and need to be negotiated. Cutting the beams flush to the wall was the cleanest and most effective way to place them. It took long enough doing it that way and would have been an absolute nightmare having to inset them and do the joint compound all around each of the beams. I feel doing it that way would have called more attention to its construction or how I did it. Now that I think about it, I don't know how I would be able to safely hang the beams if they were inset. Maybe it could have been done by getting into the inside of both walls to screw the beams in. I could go on and on.
I can appreciate your criticism though. This may be a stretch but as a sculptor you might be more inclined to nit pick the technical stuff. You being distracted by the "exact distances and math" and how I did it, is a sure sign that you have experience and knowledge of how it was made. I suffer from that too when looking at sculpture, thats why I dislike so much of what I see. There isn't that same "magic" when looking at painting or video. I know much less about how its done and more importantly I don't think I could do it.
My goal? Id like for people to see the piece as a whole, a single gesture. I'm OK with not calling it sculpture but why is it like a piece of jewelry? I'm confused.


15 September, 2007 11:43  
Blogger fisher6000 said...

Hey Tom,

Yeah. I do understand how it goes. There is a space between what you imagine in your head and the thing you wind up with. That's the problem, always. Yes.

To my mind, there are two ways around that problem. You can work within an established craft, like shaker furniture, so that everyone is on the same page. The maker knows what to think in order to make what the user/viewer will be expecting to see. If you'd rather innovate, then it seems important to keep a clear understanding of the fact that viewers are not going to look at anything the same way you do.

As a viewer, I look for handholds and try to make associations. I feel like my job is to make meaning happen by bringing everything I know about to the table. I have no understanding of how hard anything is, and don't care. What I want to do is find meaning, not cut slack.

I looked at your installation, and saw a specific relationship between some lumber and a room. The room "looked" pierced, but it very obviously wasn't. But it wasn't crappily done, so that it looks like I am supposed to finish the idea for you in my mind. It was painstakingly, lovingly done, and that changed the gesture for me.

To me it felt almost "clasped", but from the inside. So I started talking to my date, who agreed that the overwhelming gesture was one of "fit."

And what we thought was interesting was the relationship between the room and the wood, which was surprisingly delicate, but was organized to look like it was violent. This felt like a jeweler's gesture to us. Refined, polite, playing at drama.

Upon further discussion, we figured that the way to make meaning happen for us, or to talk about how this piece is innovative, was to talk in terms of jewelry. The wood is obviously the gold, and the room is obviously the stone, and it's obviously a huge pendant or ring setting. But the ordinary jewlery relationship is inverted in a nice way.

Not groundbreaking, but really nice work. It is not uninteresting to make a huge piece of inside-out jewelry out of rough-hewn lumber. There is something about the piece that speaks directly about how precious and mundane much art is.

"Jewelry" isn't a criticism, it's a stab at making meaning. I am not inside your mind, I have nothing but the art at my disposal. It's also not intended to dismiss your technical prowess. Frankly, you are obviously a much more competent builder than I am, and if you wanted to inset the beams, I am sure you would have figured out a way to do so. I have no reason to sweat your small stuff. If I looked at all sculpture only in terms of The Way I Would Have Done It then I would dismiss much sculpture I see as well.

I see from your writing that Inverted Room Setting is not your intention, and that the word jewelry seems to have puckered you. I wonder why.

18 September, 2007 08:42  

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