After my CORE class on Wednesday and some great feedback from my instructors (but also a bit of panic set in), I had to give some thought to my project and really make it become what it was wanting to become but what I had failed to see. With renewed energy I dove in and started some new sketches and figured out what I needed to make to complete my thesis work. My army of drones. kinda. I realized that the piece isn't about all the techno whiz-bangery, but the simple shapes that were waiting for me to discover them standing silently. Figures. Right in front of me were these forms that my critique in gallery 31 first brought to my attention, but I ignored it.
I think subconsciously I was channeling some Giacometti. It makes me think back to a photo I took a long time ago at the National Gallery of Art in DC that I had filed away with the 1000s of other photos from my phone - important at the time but now forgotten amongst photos snapped quickly on my iphone. Inspiration waiting to be re-discovered. I found the photo this morning, and it still makes me smile. It's just funny. So much movement in such simple lines. A sense of purpose.
Art as participant in the gallery space.
My Thesis work is about that participation or choreography the artist has on the viewer in the museum or gallery. Artwork serves as a conductor with each dance different. Do you go right or left when entering a gallery space? Does the work guide you? I tend to go right to the piece that interests me most on first glance and then build on that movement...on to the next. I rarely read labels on the wall unless something needs clarification. I pinball my way through a space.
My thesis work is also about that movement through the gallery, and how the artist guides you and then of course, how and what you see.
My work is the art, and my work is the participant viewer.
I'm making figural forms in groupings (the work is titled Focus Group) - four groupings in all each with various figural forms that are representative of the average museum goer. Couples, families, singles. All tethered to each other through the devices - in this case the Dropcam. Of course what they see, you can see also by visiting jeffherrity.net/focusgroup (and you know that you can 'tune-in' to my studio while I make the work and watch it's creation, birth) on your computer (ironically, and thankfully, the feed does not work on iphones unless you have the Dropcam app, which I will offer as a solution in some way at the opening) These forms will (hopefully) be scattered throughout the museum space observing art and observing the observer.
These (to the right) are two of the forms that will be part of my Thesis. They are connected to each other via the cord from the camera. The camera is also powered by an external battery which the other form holds. there are no cords to the walls. These are completely free roaming camera forms. My hopes are that when the show is running, museum guests will move the forms to wherever they want them to be in the space (with a respectable distance from other works...) This is the participation of my work.
The participant will guide what the viewer at home sees.
in my next post, i'll discuss the origins of watching at home.
Please touch the sculpture.