“I’m currently working on two new architectural installations that will be included in the exhibition, ‘Close to the Line,’ on view in the Burt Chernow Galleries at the Housatonic Museum of Art, Bridgeport, CT, September 5 – October 12, 2019. Curated by Barbara O’Brien, the exhibit proposes an investigation of geometric abstraction through a performative lens. The exhibit will also feature paintings by Finnish artist, Mari Rantanen.
In the main gallery, the installation titled ‘Switchback,’ is a grouping of tall trestle-style wood frames that support monumental fragments of architectural arches; they appear to whirl overhead and fall around a painted yellow platform. Viewers will be able to walk through the installation, passing first through the wood frames, then under the arcs and onto the platform. As they move through the layers of space, they become participants in the installation’s theatrical ‘stage.’
Building these arcs involves a process called bent wood lamination, where thin strips of wood are glued then quickly pressed around a form. For ‘Switchback,’ each arc is a combination of three bent wood arcs of different widths that recall the ornamental architectural' features around arched openings called archivolts. The arcs are painted mostly white, except for unexpected pops of bright pink, light blue and strips of abstracted red shapes on some of the bands. Similarly, the platform is painted a vivid yellow with portions of orange or pink pattern, enlarged to the point where pattern is no longer recognizable. The 2x4 wood frames are painted with a faux finish in a wood grain pattern. Pattern and painted surface complicate the materiality of the installation as well as intensify the disrupted, incompleteability of the installation.
‘post,’ in the second gallery, is a smaller arrangement of faux architectural elements. The title ‘post’ can both refer to a literal description of the structure, which is stationed upright, or a starting or finishing point in process. Uncertainty, mingled with humor, that provokes thought as embodied action has been a significant theme to my work: the process of knowing as we go rather than anticipating what and where.”