I put physical objects to abstract use in visual poems. As a thing may support more than one story, each hanging of my object drawings is like the oral tradition of story telling: retelling, losing, holding onto and gaining in a continuing migration.
I began using toss away containers, conduits, coverings and connectors as a primary material for drawing visual poems because these physical objects are modern artifacts that hold to a prior functional identity that must be shed, yet need not be fully let go, to serve as points, lines, areas and volumes of a nonfunctional drawing. I connect and straddle the identities of the physical objects by collapsing, inflating, stretching, folding, marring, staining and otherwise altering them to function as points, lines, areas and volumes in wall based assemblages, completed by light and site position. The combinations inevitably embody male and/or female aspects.
Conceptually, the work begins in Paleolithic rock art, which had been preserved largely because it lay undiscovered for thousands of years and upon discovery has had to be actively protected, and in the ubiquity of vessels as artifacts. It extends to the question exemplified, for example, by Eva Hesse’s Studio Leavings, of when an object begins to be art. Visually, the work begins in analytic cubism, and once extended to physical materials, expands upon Eva Hesse, Robert Morris, and others who worked with physical material. The language of the physical material and real physical volume must be accommodated or countermanded.
The use of identifiable discards as artifacts encourages a pause, in which to contemplate and confront both what it means to be accounted for, present and acted upon and culpability over what often gets physically and metaphorically tossed away without thought. Making preservable work that appears disposable counters the modern, wasteful paradigm to build in obsolescence.