Monday, August 30, 2010

Monday, August 16, 2010

Pallets! Pallets! Pallets?

After too many weeks of procrastination and little excuses left..I headed to the studio last night to try to work on something. It's like the author Anne Lamott said in the book Bird by have to have a shitty first draft whether this is a writing or a piece of art work. Just MAKE SOMETHING ALREADY! So last night I attempted something of that nature. May and Louie came along which helped to have someone else to talk to and bounce ideas off of one another. I did a lot of brainstorming and have three pretty solid ideas for pieces I want to work on in the upcoming months, as my starting point. We dug around the other floors of my studio building and I found a beautiful, old pallet that has become..I think?..a new material I want to incorporate with my newsprint. Tomorrow will be pallet collecting day. My goal is to gather at least 10 pallets by the end of the week that I can cut into with a jig saw and create/construct a wall piece designed like a map...of course this will naturally change over the process but it's a start!

For the time being, here are some images I gathered about pallets..a few interesting websites. The first is called Inhabitat and it posted about a Modern Manafesto House that was constructed out of of pallets and resides in Chile. Check this out!

Some facts I did not know..It's estimated that there are about 2 BILLION ordinary unit load pallets in circulation globally, and about two-thirds of these are only used once. It's further estimated that U.S. companies throw away roughly 4 billion board feet of wood pallets every year. HDR Architecture came up with Unit Load_Redux, a temporary exhibition intended as a probe for sustainable living through the redux of pallets and the use of bicycle energy. Here is the original article. It has so really great photos of the installation.

and moooore images. I can't help it. This is what I love to do. Collect images. At least they are disposable and don't take up any physical space except in the computer world..right?

Caio Reisewitz

I had the opportunity to view Caio Reisewitz first solo exhibition at the CCBB during my past visit to Rio. I remember being easier intrigued and influence by the natural beauty that his photographers share with the viewer. The photograph above was probably by far on of my favorites of the exhibition. The color is just so intense and rich. He had many other images of inside architectural spaces that played a lot with light and shadow.

The photography that intrigued me, by far the most, was what simply appeared to be a shot of the forest or jungle. It was a luscious green that soaked in the color and made it feel like I was there. With further examination you begin to notice that what first appears to be a place furthest away from civilization, you notice favelas hidden among the foresta. I decided to look into a bit more of his work and found out he is a native of São Paulo and photographs many of his images within its limits. I personally did not witness or experience much of any encounters with nature while in São Paulo. It is a HUGE city, home to over 11 million people. It is nice to know areas like this do exist there and I like the juxaposition of these two different environments of the natural and processed together. When I saw that photograph, I had an "ah ha!" moment and began to think about this idea in other forms. In some ways I think it was the inspiration behind my latest idea for a piece.

Thesis 2010-2011

Brief description of previous work upon which this new body of work will be built:

My previous work involved site-specific research pertaining to the Greektown community located in East Baltimore. The project became an investigation about not only the history of the community but also the history of a specific abandoned building soon to be demolished. The project end result was an installation with sculptures and found material from the site that otherwise would have become wasted materials. Themes such as consumption, nature, and urban theory come across in much of my work.

I am interested in beginning a new study of a different community through the means of images, material experimentation, and large-scale site-specific installations. I lived in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil for a total of 7 months and grew very fascinated by many aspects of the city, in particular the visual imagery of favelas on many of their mountain sides. I think they are of great interest to me because of visual comparison I see within my own work being clustering, growth, organisms, and chaos but I am interested in interpreting these places through things in nature which goes through a similar growth process. There is a fruit that I grew rather fond of during my time in Brazil called Jabuticaba. What I discovered about the way it grows I found rather fascinating and thought it would be an interesting way to represent these clusters of communities since both relate rather well to one another.

Problem Statement and/or Existential Question that will launch new investigation:

Create an installation that represents different sensory or memories of architecture or spaces in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. I see this being done through a series of mappings and then large scale installation or site specific installations that are incorporated into my past research but interwoven into my current location, Baltimore.

This is a pretty precise and rigid statement but should be open to interpretation. I recently have grown fascinated with the favelas located in much of Rio and most major areas in Brazil. They consist of shantytowns where often times you find the working class of Brazil. Most fall in the lower class but there isn’t much of a middle ground between the very rich and very poor in the country. Their jobs consist of pretty much anything but often they are maids or matainence helpers for the upper class and once they have finished a long day of work they return to their homes which are inside these favelas. It is full of more culture (both good and bad) and I think much of the rest of the city simply has in many areas become Americanized and converted to meet international standards that don’t really preserve Rio’s history. I think most tourists that I met who came to Rio, wanted to see these places and still am not really sure if it was for reasons such as medias involvement in portraying communities such as in Cidade de Deus (City of God), which is a real favela in the West Zone of the city BUT I think the majority of the people that did visit left with an overpowering sense of how different life is there from the rest of the city and wanted to help.

Plan for doing the work including a description of steps in the process:

• Updating and actively posting in a daily blog that contains a collection of notes, images through the development process.
• Working weekly in my studio space on further developing experiments with materials and research.
• I am interested in possibly planning to be involved in an event held at the Creative Alliance in February about Brazil. I am in contact with the person in charge to discuss about exhibiting during this event.

Nature of work to be done in terms of quantity and quality:

I am envisioning a large-scale installation that explores new materials and new ideas about Brazil but furthers some of my past explorations with materials such as newspaper, metal, and wood. Depending on the size and labor intensity of the work, I hope to complete 2 – 3 pieces.