Over the past month I have been working diligently at constructing a sculpture and installation sculpture at MIAD. What started as a simple concept and desire to create a fully interactive sculpture soon got some discussions started and my pen just started doodling. As a photographer, I am often limited to using only visual elements to share great physical accomplishments, human feelings, social commentaries, etc. The challenge, or more or less my goal, is to represent and share intangible things like experiences and ideas in a two-dimensional realm. I always find great joy in the challenge, and photographing in the great outdoors where the environment is physically challenging demands me to use not only my mind to find the right shot, but my body to get my there (which isn't usually as easy as moving over a few feet or just kneeling down). The process of capturing exciting images is in my opinion, the real art being made. The images are merely a reminder or documentation that what was happening was truly unique, significant, and powerful... Art exists all around us, and I don't believe we need a gallery to appreciate it.
When thinking about my intent with this sculpture, I knew I wanted to share and create an experience for people who wouldn't necessarily have the experience otherwise. Very few things can be truly understood by starring at it in the color-balanced, temperature controlled, security guarded rooms that may contain it in a museum. It was my goal to create a piece not to stare at, but to experience wholly. The piece needed to function not only visually, but also equally to be interacted with physically. In a similar way in which I use the camera to share a feeling and convey an experience, I wanted my sculpture to do the same but in three-dimensions and without restrictions.
I wanted to continue the excitement and enjoyment I get from creating (whether its photographing, sculpture, drawing, writing, or bike fixing) and pass it on directly to the viewer, who is encouraged not only to view, but to participate and tap into whatever desire it is they may otherwise have kept hidden to experience a work of art. The construction of the piece may be completed, but the art (so to speak) isn't ever really beginning or ending. In my opinion, the creative process knows no end, and to limit people's art experience to only viewing "completed" artworks I think is counter-productive to art appreciation. Granted, this cannot be true to every artwork, and I don't encourage people to interact with non-interactive art, but I'd like to embrace art-creation/continuation as a major influence on my work.
The sculpture will be up for just under a week, and can be found in the fourth floor raw space at MIAD. I encourage any and all of you to enjoy it on whatever level you deem appropriate. As I write this now it will only be up for about 24 more hours before I get to continue the art process by cutting it down with various saws and other destructive noise makers. Thanks to all who bravely scaled it and brought their friends to see it as well, as always I love to hear the feedback. Also be careful, I don't want anyone to experience a trip in an interactive ambulance.