I haven't been on much lately because I'm busting my ass to get a sculpture done. I am working on a project that was just accepted to Scrapel Hill III Exhibition in Chapel Hill, NC. Basically, a large indoor mall has a yearly exhibition of sculptures made from discarded/reused items. It is right up my alley. The install is on April 11. 15 artists were accepted.
Below is the pertinent excerpt from my proposal:
Scrapel Hill comes at a particularly great time because I am nearing execution on several works in a new series called “Remixed Media.” This series will be an elegant fusion of creative reuse, geeky technology, beautiful lightforms, and rich underlying symbolism. I could wax poetic about this project but I have my sketchbook right here, so let it do the talking:
“This series began in early 2009 when I saw how much outdated computer media was being thrown away or lying in piles on people's desks. It is sometimes difficult to make art from something as ubiquitous and banal as computer media. Take CD's, for example. Almost every project that came to
mind seemed trite, or akin to a weekend lava lamp project. So I resolved to make beautiful or arresting works first, with the found materials as support rather than the focus.”
The proposal that was accepted was:
Remixed Media #1: Peepshow
Hard disk platters are 99.95% reflective: almost perfect mirrors. They are made of aluminum and coated with platinum foil. They are perfectly round with a 1” hole in the center. Circles can be formed into equilateral triangles, and an icosahedron can be formed from 20 equilateral triangles:
If lit from within, this 50” polygon would form an infinite reflective surface. The gently rounded holes in the hard disc platters make perfect eyeholes, so the eyes of the viewer are reflected infinitely as well.
This sculpture design is interactive and beautiful. If properly mounted in a public space, people will be drawn to it. They may catch each other's eyes from across (and within) the sculpture: the perfect meet cute scenario. Parent and child could peek in at the same time and see wonder reflected in each other's eyes. Not only is this design aesthetically appealing, but the reuse of discarded hard drive media and the recursive/infinite nature of the sculpture has rich symbolic meaning (permanence of metals in landfills, longevity of information, who is “peeking” at your data.) If exposed to sunlight, it will cast an ever-changing pattern of mottled light across the space.
I have gathered hundreds of hard disks for this project and removed the platters, which believe you me was not easy. I plan to use all of the hard disc parts in other sculptures.
okay, now that we've gotten the proposal out of the way, here's how it's going down.... BLEH! Just kidding but this has been a challenge. did you know some hard drive platters are made out of tempered glass which, when flexed, shatter into a thousand shards which screech across the room and impale themselves in your neck? Did you know that epoxy does not adhere to a 99.95% smooth surface? did you know that perfect triangles are not perfect if you move the platters out of line even 1/64th of an inch? I know all that now.
Below is the third jig I have made to attempt this project, and I must say third time's a charm:
I used zip disc hubs and hexagonal perforated metal from a server door. I'm using a dremel to rough up the surface before the epoxy goes on. how will I assemble this all together? NO IDEA! heck, I have plenty of time. Only 150 more platters to mark, scuff, epoxy, weight down, dry overnight. two hours of work per side plus 12 hours drying time. 15 sides to go. Approx three weeks til deadline...
Oh my gosh Rob! What a brilliant idea. IF you have time would love to see an update but somehow I think that every second of the next 3 weeks will already be accounted for!
I want to wish you every success for this venture and a HUGE congratulations on being accepted as one of the fifteen artists to show their sculptures!!!
my god,Rob, what a phantastic project which is very different to your rusty art!Fantastic!!!
Get us updated and show us on a video if you can!Lots of energy for the weeks to come!
CONRATULATIONS on getting into the show ROB!!!!!
Fantastic idea! Love your official write up on the piece and then the ACTUAL account of trying to make it come together. Hope your neck is ok ;)
You must show us the finished piece set up on display.
Wowee how cool! Congrats on being accepted and it looks really interesting so far...can't wait to see the finished project!
Just a followup.... here is a video taken during the opening reception. It was fun to be in the mall doing an interactive art critique while mall patrons walked by and gawked/joined in. I was nervous being the first speaker but it went okay.