In the experience of “finding”, It has been proven time and again how tough it can be to recognize the “thing” sitting right in front of us.. It is that, simple, unsuspecting gesture, object, thought, so available, it almost becomes invisible; Until someone comes along, points to it or lauds it, that “thing” remains invisible or unvalued. Soo Kim’s craft-like paper cutting or Ori Gerhst’s exquisitely beautiful exploding bouquets, both deceptively simple and yet in their application, operate in wide realms of complexity. My stacking pieces have their origins in the dreamlike state of, awakening to a reality, so present, obvious and available, it is often completely overlooked.
Mike Kelly’s work has its origins in that place of simple discovery and like his work, my pieces are also imbued with the sentimentality of the collective memories of its components. In MK’s work, the components, whether aesthetically realized / accomplished or not, were intended to be beautiful / attractive, meant to facilitate nourishment / nurturing (food consumption or shelter), or self aggrandizement / boastfulness (as it relates to fashion or self confidence); All only to be degraded, dismissed and ultimately devalued – Now languishing in helpless heaps, waiting for bargain / treasure hunters or economically / culturally disenfranchised survival shoppers… And then there’s ME – Often amidst the scalding “looks” and sometimes vocal protestations of faith driven do-good volunteers or minimum wage purposeful despots – I quickly and as surreptitiously as is possible, organize, aestheticize, nudge and cajole, disparate objects into nearly impossible, balancing towers, then, with a telephone camera, hovering above like a snake stalking prey, shielding the reflective screen from the glare of fluorescents with one hand, I wait, incrementally drifting, visually finessing the concentric circle configurations, wait, hold my breath and then with a twitch of my thumb I hear the phony, shutter clicking noise… and it’s done. Instantly, all of the grunge, the materiality, the psychic weight of the dispossessed, all rally together, optically flattening out and down, weaving colors, textures and shapes into a painting-like singularity.
I’ve often wondered what Mrs. Pollock said, when asked, “what’s Jackson doing these days”… Was her answer… “Dripping paint”? I acknowledge, each day I commit to my art practice I think on some level, what the heck am I doing with my life? And what does Mrs. Kaufman say when asked about me “he spends endless hours stacking plates at Thriftstores… I’m so proud of him”?
For so many reasons, for so many decades I have been able to answer that question for myself and continue, through / including doubt, to make inquiries into seemingly senseless or contrary conversations. These photos represent a process that seems senseless in a world of mortgages and child rearing and yet it continues to yield results which posses a dark weirdly optimistic, life affirming beauty and simplicity…