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This work consists of large paintings distributed (into a sculpture (that is a recombinant installation (that is a function))). Stage one (all the images below) is done; later stages are to be created in site-specific locations nationally and globally over the next few years, the work accreting to an enormous size…
VORTEX 35′ dia.
Its multivalent presentation modes [SEE IMAGES BELOW] enables it to explore many ideas. The sculpture is a mutable metaphor, a hackable technology, a language or a system or an open function for divining insight. Abstract ideas experienced concretely via abstract form. For example to viscerally explore concepts of borders, colonialism, and migration in an institutional setting, a large sculptural emplacement of massed Xes could be shifted a few feet further along each day, so that over months the sculpture migrates across the entire venue, passing through and even over other exhibitions; the artwork becomes a diaspora, and its movement a negotiation — will the museum, curators, or other artists allow their territory, ideology, or work to be trespassed, inhabited, obscured, barricaded, enlivened? And/or as live data: wind currents…
CURRNT 30 x 12′
…And/or genetically modified, CRISPR’d: components or sequences spliced in and out creating entirely new forms (some beautiful some a disaster). And/or decentralized: like the web, like bitcoin, like the internet of things, the single huge sculpture could be ‘decentralized’, the work separated into discrete nodes distributed across various pavilions. And/or as virus, biological or digital: a single X on day one, then two, four, exponentially up to thousands by show’s end to completely fill up the room or venue. And/or as Anthropocene: the installation’s additive layers rising to cover other works. And/or fun: as video game or treasure hunt, hidden sections to be discovered distributed throughout the museum; as music, or meme, remixed. It is both a wave (possible states) and a particle (current ‘collapsed’ reality)…
Over time this artwork is to accrete into a single huge installation made from many sculptures made from sculptures made of site-specific paintings done around the world.
DETRITS 10 x 12 x 5′
The key idea of this work is change. It will change in scale over months to years, growing immensely as many new component Xes (each made from paintings for separate sub-sculptures done later in different places) are continuously created and added to the aggregate work. It will change location, as it is meant to be nomadic and travel for exhibiting (each additive sub-sculpture packable into a suitcase, storable on a shelf). It will change in content, as new terroir-data paintings get added — from Newfoundland, Shenzhen, Scotland, Dubai etc — to create a local-but-global 3D megamosaic. Importantly, the artwork will also change radically and infinitely in shape as it is shown over days, weeks, years, as its extant component parts get arranged in new ways to alter its gestalt form; more importantly, it will change in meaning as it physically explores and expresses many concepts. It is about being able to simultaneously contain or potentially express multiple ideas, some contrasting (it is both local and global; it is about its past versions and future possibilities…)
FLATLND Each grouping 7’+
There will always be a site specific ‘origin’ painting, but the initial paintings will always remain ‘virtual’ — only seen as decentralized works in the larger assembly of the work, never in their original form. (Encyrpted in the work.)
Each iteration is absolutely unique. It will be impossible to exactly reproduce the same arrangement exactly; in this sense the work is like musical performance, it can only be experienced in the venue ‘live’. (Each component is a note, the installation a symphony.) It is musical, with rhythm and melody, not noisy or chaotic…
GLACR. 10 x 25 x 40′
Each version explored in Banff was spontaneous to the moment. The spiral was related to Lake Louise being an energy vortex. The pile was thinking of debris, detritus, chaos, ungridded; the linear element is playing with the 2D, 3D, 4D idea of the work, and palimpsests (the edges of the components are themselves paintings; the landscape was a probably unconsciously a mountainous landscape (echoing the surroundings); the Current was around the time of a chinook, and was wind current data; the megalith was thinking of all the information embedded in ancient structures like Stonehenge, Angkor Wat.
MEGALTH. 15 x 12 x 1′
Ideally the work will have components sculptures composed on many continents added to the aggregate, and grow to be 10x the size — which will enable many more complex and massive arrangements.
MORE FUTURES: in a line, a kilometer long… a mandala the size of a football field; coral encrusting the side of a museum… a crystalline chandelier the size of a blimp… as two ‘entangled’ works in separate cities, identically arranged and changed at the same time… as a barricaded room, filled to block the door so the work can only be looked into not walked around… as an enormous jpeg the size of a field, hand assembled one pixel at a time… all the pieces, shown flat and framed over many walls…
PS: the work is made of a provisional material: cardboard. This is for a number of reasons: One, it’s recycled, always a good thing. Two: it’s lightweight, easy to ship and schlepp, especially as it’s to be nomadic in creation and exhibition. Also, each piece is unique, so though it looks mass-made, the each component piece has its own character — if there was a pre-cut hole in the cardboard, I kept it, because the effect becomes like a mandala, where you see the large gestalt, but if you take the time to concentrate, you notice the small differences, and the overall BAM of the big view becomes a quieter meditative experience. Three: if, seen biologically, the work is an organism, then the imperfections in the material are like scars, or moles; or the component Xes are like cells… which, just as your body sheds and replaces, perhaps I’ll switch out or replace with new ones years from now. Four: if I do start to use other materials for the discrete components– like wood or likely aluminum — they will increase the visual complexity of the work, as well as giving a sense of the progression of time…
BARRICD 12 x 20 x 30′ (the sculpture to be experienced as a 2D painting, its interior depth viewable only from the flat front facing.)
And finally, here’s a couple video view of the Vortex iteration, the second done by Banff Centre:
Six weeks and 800 painted cardboard pieces—visual artist @_k_i_a_ was busy during the Independent Residency this fall at Banff Centre. . His ever-changing installation CRSPR SCLPTR is a colourful way to explore information as he re-arranges each piece into a new creation over time. He let us into his studio for a peek at his work.
PS: See HERE for paintings inspired by the same idea (below are two examples), also done Banff:
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