Sculptures Starting, I or We, the Beholders Brain, My Next Stop, 365 and Worth Noting
Posted on 10 April 2012
Some Sculpture Park Scoop: Lot of activity out on the work pad!!!, Sophie is starting with a colorful ‘get fresh’ pineapple tangerine duo, Josh is going scrappy for stainless steel, Jesse is making foliage and has created an anvil out of an I-beam, Nam is intricately exploding pipe ends and talking about painting scaled gradients, I need to get that gantry out of the way and I added some musical cords to my upper deck- thanks for the threads Mike, Francoina @ Casket’s Los Cuatro Ases show was packed and great—need I mention the huge bonfire, Robin fired up the forklift, Amy’s show at the Soo Galary was complete with a giant cut out, ginger seems to be one of the condiments of choice, the Easter Bunny came- I think Liz might know more about that, the artists have gotten a quick start (keep it going all the way to June!), big decisions are all around, and SO so so much more!
“I” speaking for the “we.” This article from Hyperallergic speaks to the artist Stanley Whitney’s struggle in the early 70’s to the late 80’s in creating work that was individually his own along with being a “representative of Black culture.” I think it is common to want not to be alone but still unique. Do you find yourself representing a group? How can you proudly be part of a larger entity and still maintain uniqueness?
The Age of Insight- Eric Kandel’s new book (The Age of Insight: The Quest to Understand the Unconscious in Art, Mind, And Brain From Vienna 1900 to the Present) focuses on art and its connection with the science of how our brains respond to what we can’t explain. He studies the beholder of art, not the artist, to understand the science in how people percieve art. He finds that through ‘top down processing’ people compare and contrast old experiences with the new experiences before they consciously respond. He describes how artwork evokes a unconcious reaction because of its representation of ambiguity. And, that a ‘beholder’ or viewer of art reacts differently to different works of art because we have all had different experiences. I would love to meet neurologist and Columbia professor Eric Kandel someday.
Choosing Art- Often, the experience of creating work at Franconia Sculpture Park leads emerging artists down paths they hadn’t thought they’d take (be that an MFA program… a trip to another country… or even an MPP). After I graduated from college, I applied to two MFA (Masters of Fine Arts) programs and neither accepted me. I was 21years old, almost 22, and absolutely crushed. I felt like that was a sign that I wasn’t good enough. In order for me to carry on creating work and feeling like I had something to contribute,,, I decided that “I don’t need grad school to be a great sculptor!” I’ve been making art ever since (with a supportive and helpful hand from Franconia). I lived with that mentality for years and years and when my friends and artists colleges went to their respective MFA programs I celebrated their new adventure and wished them well. But, I did feel a sense of longing to know just what creating sculpture in that environment could be like. I could only imagine creating sculpture on a daily basis without working full time. I did not reapply. I did not open myself to being shut out again until just recently. To be honest,,, the work I was creating right out of undergrad was lacking a lot. I had the work ethic then but I had no idea what I could say, what I wanted to say or what artistically was worth saying. I’ve been building my safety net and my artistic practice in the mean time. I just got fantastic and generous offers from several MFA programs this year and I am excited to be going to UCLA in the fall! This has been a long time coming. Go Bruins?! I’m not sure I even know what a Bruin looks like. I better get on that.
aRe Verse- The first poem was written by Jesse Bercowetz and the second is one of mine.
Open 365 days a year. How many places do you know that are open 365 days a year from dawn til dusk and are interesting and free? That means if it is Christmas Day and your hankering for a solo morning stroll surrounded by sculpture- Franconia Sculpture Park. That means that if you have company coming and you want a fun place to visit but you don’t know what’s open and need to accommodate kids, parents, and also need to walk the dog- Franconia Sculpture Park. That means if you want to get your kids outside away from the video games on an evening during the middle of the week- Franconia Sculpture Park. That means if you are looking to take your sweet heart on a memorable date but don’t have a lot of extra funds- Franconia Sculpture Park. Yep 365 dawn til dusk. Free. We are there for you.
Worth noting- I love this list from the poet Vera Pavlova. What is in your notebook/sketchbook? And what do you consider noteworthy?
I’ve included some photos from the Casket show and also from Amy Toscani’s opening. I hope to move the gantry with the crane on Friday morning with a little help from John Hock. I can’t wait for the next weekend to keep making progress on my sculpture. And, will we see you at the park soon? I hope so! Cheers to living with passion and having time fly away because of it. Thanks for reading.