Standard Variation // Solo @ Lincoln Arts Project // Fall 2014
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STANDARD VARIATION is a body of new work that debuted in a solo show at Lincoln Arts Project in Waltham, MA in 2014. Most of these shots are from the show, but this body of work is currently in progress.
STATEMENT ABOUT THE WORK:
The creations of mechanical technique are organisms tending to a pure functioning, and obey the same evolutionary laws as those objects in nature which excite our admiration. There is harmony in the performances which come from the workshop or the factory. These are the everyday jobs of a whole world working with perception, intelligence and precision, with imagination, daring and severity.... Every maker has found [themselves] obliged to go over and above the standard of practical realization, to prosecute the search for a perfection and harmony beyond the mere practical side, a manifestation not only of perfection and harmony, but of beauty.
- Le Corbusier's Eyes Which Do Not See
For years I have scavenged streets, loading docks, and storage spaces for compelling standardized shapes that influence our experience of everyday functionality--packaging materials, office supplies or other forms that protect precious cargo of the everyday. I refer to my desire to save these items as "utilifilia," however the ways I choose to recycle them veers away from utility. I collect, analyze and organize these objects and materials according to their slight variations, with a heavy emphasis on found/industrial color schemes or other aesthetic traits. The subtle shifts translate into a type of "handwriting" by way of mechanical inconsistency. Ordered arrangements or embellishments of these objects may thus call attention to the gradients, spectra, and authentic characteristics of typically overlooked ephemera.
As an artist and great-granddaughter of a masterful quilter who left behind many influential heirlooms. I have also found a connection between these utilitarian patterns and traditional american quilting patterns. In most instruction books the titles given each pattern derive from anecdotal, ritualistic, and cosmic observations of the everyday, but translate into an array of standardized geometric arrangements which I mimic in some of my works. The playful process of taking a classic pattern and testing slight alterations produces what are referred to as"variations" on that pattern. American craft culture has been built upon this sort of resourceful accumulation and archetypal symbology. Many styles in particular, from Log Cabin to Chain Link, Brick Wall to Clamshell, Basketweave to Barn Raising, reflect the simple, workaday materials and tasks- such that the aforementioned standardized supplies from my pieces serve, but in a different cultural and industrial paradigm.