Glass (sculpted, cast, blown), silver, copper, steel
University of Illinois Chicago, Engineering and Innovation Building, permanent commission
Produced with the assistance of the glass gaffers at Firebird Community Arts in Chicago
15’l x 9’w x 13’h
Entropy is one of the prominent laws governing the universe, and in the fields of chemistry and physics it is interpreted as the degree of disorder or randomness within a given system. Entropy requires the passage of time for its evidence to be seen whereas constructing and maintaining order demands effort.
The forms that make up Irreversible Progress of Entropy struggle to bend away from the exposed system of entropic decay. The objects endeavor independently and synchronously to transform or sublimate, and creep into their own order of disarray. Molten glass is shaped into forms that draw upon Plato’s solids, yet move within and away from this empirical aesthetic to become abstracted and indeterminate. Copper grids and metals embed themselves into some of the volumes. The grids distort and blow out to become in-between geometries married to the once viscous matter.
12’ w x 12’l x 16’h
Proposal: UIC Engineering College, Art in Architecture
Proposed materials: blown and cast glass, copper, steel, silver
The layperson to science may know of entropy from their own personal experiences, when figuratively speaking order seems to imperceptibly and irreversibly creep into disorder; the house is falling apart, or personal accounting from finances to love gets messy. Entropy is one of the prominent laws governing the universe and in the fields of chemistry and physics is interpreted as the degree of disorder or randomness in a system.
Entropy requires the passage of time for its evidence to be seen whereas constructing order demands effort. Artists and scientists are creators of order, fashioning the unruly and pesky materials of the universe into forms and inventions that restack the decks of time.
My proposed sculpture: ENTROPY, flirts with crafting the stable object within the arena of the rickety.
Molten glass when shaped and cooled to reflect the moment of making can act like a snapshot. It has the power to “hold” the moment the shape is created, attempting to put a clamp on the Arrow of Time. A fossilized mosquito in amber, a frozen popsicle, photography, the bare cliffs of Death Valley, once molten glass,,,these are things that allow us to re-experience an instance that has passed. One that could have occurred last night or on an eve a billion years ago.
In ENTROPY, molten glass is shaped into forms that draw upon Plato’s Solids; three dimensional shapes where each face is the same regular polygon. Plato theorized these Solids were the building blocks of classical elements; earth, water, air, fire. ENTROPY’S glass sculptures move within and away from this empirical aesthetic to become abstracted and less determined, sharp corners evolve into rounded puddles. Metal fragments are incorporated into the glass; broken rods of steel and copper grids embedded into some of the volumes. The grids distort and blow out to become in-between geometry, married to the viscous matter. The copper grids, silver skins, and steel rods originate from minerals created from the origins of the universe, some minerals native to our planet, others arriving as permanent tourists.
ENTROPY, willfully destroys exposed systems of knowledge. Systems still visible yet transformed and sublimated by the liminal, the other, the heat or the will to alchemically metamorphose.
In the summer of 1967; race riots spread throughout the country, the Soviet Union along with the US and UK banned nuclear weapons from outer space, protests increased against the war in Vietnam, Richard Speck was sentenced to death for killing eight student nurses in Chicago, the Supreme Court declared all U.S. state laws prohibiting interracial marriage to be unconstitutional, Carousel of Progress opened at Disneyland, Thurgood Marshall was confirmed as a Justice of the Supreme Court, Arab and Isreali forces battled in the Six Day War, “Aretha Franklin released “Respect”, and the “The Picasso” was installed on Daley Plaza.
It was against this backdrop of deep civil unrest that what is now know as “The Picasso” was gifted to the people of the City of Chicago as a work of public and civic art. It was a piece reflective of its time in that it was not a reflection of its time. The artwork was born from the imagination of an indisputable master and one of the worlds’ first global artists’. For the private developers of Daley Plaza, Picasso’s sketch held a pedigree representative of artistic authority. They made it big and permanent and called it done. The standard authority of power prevailed and delivered an ancient monument to one of the City’s most lively public squares.
The Picasso REDO isn’t an erasure of what is underneath or what came before but a direct address. This new and temporary piece is an apparition, a colorful mirror that spectrally reflects all of its surroundings. It’s not a clear reflection, but one that’s abstract and diaphanous, think big picture but the details are vague. The reflective surface is made of flowy fabric that moves with a touch or a breeze and is at the will of what is underneath it and impressed upon it- the Picasso and the public. There’s a will to recognize past and present, to draw parallels and declare difference. The fabric will have form of its own making and not rely upon the Picasso to deliver its silhouette. The REDO will utilize positive airflow pressure to create a pneumatic (inflatable) sculpture in the form of a draped pile. What is underneath or what was even there to recall from memory? Perhaps it’s raw materials waiting to be transformed or nothing but air.
As we know, Chicago is a different city from that of 50 years ago, yet still the protection of the basic rights and liberties of all its people is a daily battle fought civically and individually. Picasso REDO is an invitation for personal engagement, to see oneself included within the larger civic Chicago landscape. Through light, movement and tactility it invites the domestication of and participation in authority.
Proposal for Loop Link Transit Bus Shelter for City of Chicago
In our almost totally digitally infused and organized society, the only evidence of the human is the touch. The presence of the individual is the presence of the mishap the glitch in the system or the error of the hand. There is expression in; the line ruled through computer software, the gravity bound hand-scribing graphite onto paper or the printers’ ink pressed into the weave of a cloth. Yet the gesture or the signature of the mortal hand is what connects us most profoundly to our past and future.
A moiré pattern is a visual byproduct caused by overlaying two identical patterns such as grids or dots. These patterns are often seen as accidental nuisances in the printing field but their effect is unpredictable and visually dynamic. I created a series of moiré patterns by screen printing these ordered lined patterns onto textiles, by hand. The disruptions in the printed patterns are like glitchy drawings that defy the two dimensional boundaries of the plane of cloth, to become spatially dynamic volumes of pattern and line. The hand screen printed fabrics were then digitized and recomposed to create the suite of four artworks for the Loop Link.
Chicago is a new city founded on trade, transportation and commerce. Like so many of its sister cities that rose out of the 19th century, Chicago was built on older forms of production that were traded in the great “pit” of exchange. Commodities and their modes of exchange have both rapidly evolved from that of the brick and mortar to that of the digital and cyber. Our new civic energy often is tied to the accelerating speed and precision offered by the digital. Through dynamic sets of spatial patterns, MOIRÉ explores the complex ecology of Chicago’s evolving political, cultural and economic histories.
The interplay between the hand and the digital, and the textile and the city allow us to contemplate scales of engagement along a spectrum of the personal, the civic and the global. MOIRÉ fully acknowledges the necessity of the digital within contemporary society yet offers an introduction of the glitch as a tool for regenerating a poetics of space.
Chicago Ideas Week: Artist in Residence Proposal
400 N. Michigan Ave, Pioneer Plaza
Geometric forms imply both the known and the speculative. They can be called abstract when considered in relationship to the figurative or representational but to mathematicians they are nothing short of perfection and precision. In particular, Platonic forms are three-dimensional maps or formulas, able to answer questions that exceed their own literal form.
These foundational forms have an uncanny ability to act as a chameleon of content, absorbing and reflect back the character of their environment. In Geominatrix, the sculptures reference and reflect the rectilinear logic of the surrounding city but on a scale more aligned with that of the body instead of the monumental. The works have a geometric framework but then melt and mutate in their materiality. A chroma saturated skin flows over the volumes to create a juicy surface that embeds into and supports the form. There’s an appearance of a liquefied sculpture, malleable and in transition. Taught and droopy lines loosely connect the forms, criss-crossing and doubling back, resembling an idiosyncratic spider’s journey.
We have become accustomed to our public spaces as vehicle for banal representational or sterile abstract art. They often offer passersby an un-nuanced reflection of society. The use of geometric solids melting and dissolving in this piece suggests the feminizing of traditional architectural languages while embodying a more dynamic and textured feminist sci-fi utopic attitude. Geometry is also often the constant framework upon which cultures can apply their temporal signature through visual languages such as architecture, sculpture and the decorative arts.
Future Force Geo Speculators is a collaborative group founded by artists Carole Frances Lung, Ellen Rothenberg and Christine Tarkowski. Their impulse to form this collective stems from their common interest in the use of “textile” as a creative and social medium. Though each artist intersects with the material within their creative production, each capitalizes upon unique aspects of “textile” as cultural or historic carrier. Their themes of collective or individual exploration include: histories of textile and garment manufacturing from cottage industry to global production; craft/art/design dialog; social and gendered histories of labor; and textiles as surface, sculpture and architecture. The mission of FFGS is to function as an artist collaboration, which through research and production furthers the collective knowledge and output within this field.
FFGS’s creative practice engages in a pluralistic production research format. We value the physical process of hand and studio based making as well as project driven research to generate ideas and artistic solutions. Our terrain of output is variable in that we do not prioritize one form of making over another. Forms of output include architecturally scaled works, public proposals, propositional models and drawings, texts, performances, social actions, publications, and installations. We are interested in exploring the studios’ relationship to historical production, the interweaving of American craft and manufacturing traditions, utopic communities, notions of Sci-Fi Feminism, and the monumental relative to the inconsequential.
Bloomingdale Trail Proposal, Western Avenue, Chicago
THE WESTERN ARCADE/THICKENED LACE
This Project is an organic response that
calls attention to the historic industrial aesthetic of the concrete and steel
while invigorating and activating spaces carved out as a byproduct of the
re-construction of the Bloomingdale Trail.
It uses the existing brutalist structure to provide a network of
interconnected spaces for creative expression, play, social interaction,
strolling, and contemplating. The proposed vaulted concrete lace system
responds organically to the site, and is adaptable in both scale and purpose.
This system provides the signature visual style; it will become an instantly
recognizable sign of the trail, much like the Art Nouveau metro stops of Paris.
Importantly, this textile-inspired concrete lace creates spaces for people,
while providing a decorative, domestic and familiar scale and presence.
Our synthesis will utilize the dominant
railroad structure as the substrate for a rhyzomatic plan. Through use of
organically informed concrete textile lace, spaces are established for a variety
of activities. Spaces include a Play Space, Spectacle Space, Transit Space,
Skate Space, and Promenade.