Currently Dormant Artists
The following Artists are all residing in my head waiting to either emerge or at least contribute in some way to my creative output.
Many of the ideas they have or directions they'd like to pursue will have to wait until I have a studio of my own and the resources to explore them.
Some of the descriptions are more fleshed out than others with some appearing only as a planted seed. A number of the Artists are more fleshed out and making noise, and some have only just begun to whisper. This area is a part of the website that will always be under construction as I will be editing previous additions or adding new ones all the time.
1) Daryl Wrublewski: Making entirely new and unique instruments to be used in the performance of a symphony or other piece of music; after which all evidence except the memory of its performance will be destroyed.
Suffering trauma in early life due to the rapidly changing politics and alliances in his home country, Daryl developed a coping mechanism that focused on the transient nature of the people, places, and things he loved. Acceptance of these fleeting moments forced him to focus on the only thing he could control – his memory.
Both parents were professional musicians who earned a modest income. It wasn't a privileged childhood but it's one of the warmest periods in his mind before he was introduced to war.
Using his skills as an instrument craftsman he carefully and secretly designs instruments that have not been used by any other performer in history. Classical musicians are hired and kept in isolation for a brief period while they experiment with and explore the new instruments before a final performance of a piece composed by Daryl himself.
The sheet music, instrument schematics, and the instruments themselves are then destroyed completely. Everything is reduced to carbon by incinerator and the ash meticulously collected and kept in small uniform jars.
Like the people that he can no longer hold in his arms, or the places he used to spend time wiped from the face of the earth, these pieces can now only exist as an imperfect copy in someone's mind. Daryl's primary goal is to emphasize just how important this aspect of the being of things is.
Every place you've visited in your life exists as a refuge in your mind. Every person you've held in your arms is an embrace you can revisit when you want warmth or melancholy if you choose. As we carry these moments and experiences with us they break up our day as we revisit them in daydreams.
It is possible for collectors to collect the catalogued ashes of his work, but the only way to collect his Art is through experiencing it on the night it was created and holding it close to you in your memory.
"In a way I wanted to force the viewer to commit themselves to the piece in a way they wouldn't were they to have in the back of their head the idea that they could visit it later. Even if a person never intended on listening to a symphony again, or visit a gallery to see a painting, there is always a part of them that understands they can call it up on their phone or visit the gallery again someday. But by making everything about these compositions unique, and having a very strict deadline whereby all physical evidence of the event will be erased, those excuses are no longer there. They will sit tight, focus, and engage more now that they know existence is fleeting.
I also want this feeling of fragility and understanding of time to permeate their outer life in general, so that they know that even when something they love doesn't have a planned erasure date, that fate itself can just as quickly and just as completely vanish it."
2) Waldemar Melenski: Sculptural work using mirror, glass, prisms, and dichroic film.
Waldemar Melenski works with light as their primary medium. Light is the material that carries the information from the work of Art to the viewers eyes and it is those waves that he works with.
Prisms, Kaleidoscopes, chandeliers, and those stickers or posters that change when your viewing angle alters were always a source of fascination growing up; but he didn't begin to explore light as the medium itself until much later in his Artistic career. He was inspired to use light more directly after a period of binge-reading on its physical properties.
The search for Schroedinger's Cat by John Gribbon was the first book he read on theoretical physics and this led to the sequel Schroedinger's Kittens by the same author. There followed anything he could get his hands on by Briane Greene, Stephen Hawking, Michio Kaku, and his favourite Richard Feynman. Richard Feynman describing the chaos of how light behaves and the miracle of sight was this particular Artist's Eureka moment. (youtube link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FjHJ7FmV0M4 )
His most famous work was the collaborative piece with the London Ballet. A new interpretation of The Rite of Spring involving a skeleton crew of dancers wearing a complicated but completely different type of costume.
“I wanted to create such a rich experience that those attending the performance would be bathed in sensations seen only in intense psychedellic expderiences. The light wouldn't be repetitive like strobe lights or regular concert lighting meant to pound along with the rhythm. They are there to coax thoughts about higher geometries and the meaning of life, questions about the nature of reality, and where, what, or who the person is now experiencing all of this.
We also decided to record this performance in native 3D to both preserve the work and communicate the experience to as wide an audience as possible. A lot can be lost in the translation from a live experience to that of a screen – but if the screen is large enough and some of the immersive elements preserved, there is a great deal to work with.”
Each suit was first designed to have several thin layers fashioned in such a way as to allow enough movement and breathing for the skin. The layers themselves were a dichroic film – a material that changes the light as it changes angles. Throughout this suit were battery powered LED lights at strategic places along the limbs and at mechanical points like the joints, hips, head and neck.
After the general design exact measurements were taken of the few dancers involved in the work. It was decided that the number of dancers was to be limited to 8 so that each constantly changing bloom of light could be focused on if the viewer wished instead of everything being lost in a vibrant cacophany.
3) Video mosaics where each video represents a primary colour in the overall composition (so when viewed together you see the picture) but each video is something different on loop (like time lapse decay of something etc)
Frank Rizel is a visual Artist who uses videos as pixels in larger representations. Each video is a scene with a predominant colour or shade, and this video plays its part in the larger image. The first piece in this series was a very large happy face on old fashioned cathode-ray TV screens stacked on one another in a monumental 20 x 20 square arrangement. The granular happy face was obvious enough but what was happening in each screen changed depending on whether it was part of the happy face lines (the darker screens), the inside of the face itself, or the background.
The dark screens had dark motifs (loss, sorrow, struggle) while the flesh of the happy face had more neutral ones. Lighter scenes made up the background.
Interesting to look at, it was considered too “On the nose” to be serious but the Artist didn't mind as it was more a proof of concept for a range of works he had already been planning for a long time.
These larger and more detailed works used specifically designed screens 2 x 2 inches square and positioned in a grid to be programmed accordingly. The image could be more refined as the screens (or pixels) were smaller, and the effect would be more other-worldly as your eye settles on the still but moving image in front of you. The pulsating visual would allow the viewer to move in closer and focus on a single small screen where they could determine what exactly is going on there and for how long. These are works that demand both a very up close look and one from far away.
4)Sculptor who works specifically with chemical materials and plastics with specific degredation properties.
“I took the principles of planned obsolescence and the knowledge we've amasssed regarding material properties and created pieces that will age and die in front of the viewer.”
“Each colour capsule I create looks in some respects similar to a 'Tide Pod' but both the colour and the envelope are chosen for their aging or visual properties. Each piece I create is an intricate mosaic of these colour pods, and the envelope or shell of each colour pod has a lifespan.
It is shielded from air and sealed but still (of course) susceptible to both time and gravity like everything else in the world. The image when you first see it would be a somewhat traditionally rendered figurative picture, often a portrait. Portraits seem to be the most interesting for this aging.
After a number of weeks the shells begin to break down and the colour oozes. They don't all breakdown at the same rate and the process is somewhat slowed by the thickness of the oozing material and how densely packed everything is but it becomes quite noticeable after a while. Without jostling it takes a long time to become unrecognizable but the changes that take place over the years will leave a very distorted image with only the ghost of the original picture visible through the adhered remains of degraded packets”
5) Drip Paintings by Drones: Henrique Gervaise is a French-American ex patriot who made a living designing small robots for a military firm on the West Coast of the United States. He retired early when it became too difficult for him to resolve what he was designing to what he used it for.
Art was initially something that he took on purely for therapeutic reasons. Creating things to keep his mind off of the suffering caused by what he helped create. Through this he developed a love for painting and then decided to continue his education at Art College.
He didn't really settle on a particular direction for a while as it was still what he would call “just” therapy. He didn't have an identity as an Artist but felt so much better the more he used his energies to create things.
As a cathartic exercise he wanted to find a way to use his drones to paint for him and rigged these up to paint for him by spraying, dripping, or dropping paint as commanded and controlled. Some of these initial works were interesting representational exercises but he wanted nature to have greater control than his own hands.
The abstract works he's most known for are helped by the many animals he keeps on his large property in california. The first work “Birds” was the monitoring of the movement of two Kestrels he kept in a large avery in his backyard. Each Kestrel had a tiny chip which monitored their movement within the avery (simple GPS would be too granular for what he wanted). The drones were linked and given the movement of these kestrels and mimicked their behaviour while keeping certain other rules in mind (so as they wouldn't bump into one another).
This was repeated until a pattern emerged in their movements. Something the Artist felt was pure and a better reflection of what kind of conduit he wished to be.
6) Pieces that are created blind and only seen by anyone (the artist included) when revealed on the day of the exhibition.
Jonathan Tal has been creating Art for as long as any memory and very early on he liked playing with the results of things created without sight. The exercise was brought to his attention when reading a book on how to draw. Even though the end result wasn't representational it was always interesting to him. He continued this exercise throughout his life while pursuing other means of expression, but in the end settled on blind creation as a way of bringing a very specific experience of an Artist to everyone else and to experience it with them.
Usually in the act of creation an Artist is brought slowly to the familiarity with the end product. In some rare occasions the final contribution changes everything dramatically and the Artist is greeted with the final product anew – but that's rare, and they are often alone for this experience.
Jonathan works in clay, wood, marble, wool, felt, metal, glue etc. but creates the pieces completely blind. At no stage does he view the final product until the day of the exhibition's unveiling.
“The process is quite refreshing as the only model I have to go on is the one inside my head.”
“I work continuously over many months which means that the first thing I do when I start work is feel everything out trying to affirm the picture I have inside my mind. It's not going to be exact but it will be close enough for me to continue. If the piece is complicated or large enough there is an exciting sort of “broken telephone” of imagery where the distortion between one element leads onward and the end result can be truly surprising”
There have been the odd moment during unveiling that the Artist is disappionted with the final product, or completely surprised as to the difference between what was in his head and what the final result ended up being. But most often it's a pleasant sort of mild surprise – the chaos of not knowing contributing another organic element to the piece he's just created.
7) Pieces that are generated by the viewers themselves interacting with devices like video or recording devices - answering questions and having translated conversations etc
There is a gambling game where a board is fitted with many pegs and placed on a very steep angle. At the bottom of this board are a number of receptacles of identical size and labeled differently. Points or scored or predictions made based on the receptacle the player aims for (although “aiming” might not be the right word as it is more or less impossible to correctly predict) – and they place a disc or ball at the top which funnels down, bouncing among the peg until eventually settling in one of the holes below.
This is both a very controlled setting and a good example of something highly random. This Artist creates the same situations with the viewers and gallery visitors so at the end of the exhibit the points of data they create make up the piece itself.
A simple maze is constructed using paneled walls and each station is wired up to a central hub that does the processing. Cameras and microphones are everywhere.
Not everyone who walks through the maze will decide to participate but it's heavily encouraged and as such many do. Basic instructions are given as they meander along the path towards the end of the installation (things like “Say the first word that pops into your head” and “What sign will you make with your hands” and “Make Noise” etc.) Visually each station has markers, drawings, and signs that may or may not cause someone to pause before moving on. Decisions again are all up to the attendees but a certain degree of manipulation will occur.
The information is then fed into a number of algorithms which take all of the visual and audio data and produces a fully realized video piece that the viewer then gets to experience at the end.
Because of the nature of the show people are funnelled in to the exhibit in groups of 50 or less each hour. This gives them enough time to pass through, see, and interact with the exhibit and see the final product at the end. The option to purchase a signed copy of the piece will be available in the gift shop. A remark both on capitalism but not a cynical one. In truly democratic fashion anyone who attends the show will be able to leave with an Original work of Art that they played a part in creating.
8) Susan Andersen - using found objects and organic materials to create slow moving puzzles.
Using decay and entropy Susan creates pieces that in some respects look like very slow moving Rube Goldberg machines. Instead of dominoes hitting a switch which releases a ball that lights a match etc, her work moves more slowly depending on a more precise prediction of gravitational effects and time on materials such as clay, discarded food, or crumpled paper.
For the most part it is difficult to see the movement in real time as the changes usually happen at a far more dragging pace. The exceptions are when one element reaches its final goal and something is released, although even then what is released also moves at a glacial pace.
One of her favourite materials to work with are Kudzu vines, a very robust and fast growing plant, it has proven quite useful in these complicated landscapes.
9) William Jolee - Composer who crafts his music using imagery as both a conducting tool and as a method to inspire improvisation.
If you were to ask a musician to play just anything at all, the sounds they would create would only be limited by whatever random features guided their decision making process at that time. With no restrictions the possibilities and directions are endless.
Skilled Jazz musicians can take cues from one another to create truly unique and often beautiful pieces on the spot, but the direction is from the music itself and still relies heavily on previously agreed upon structures and convention.
What William "Great Bill" Jolee attempts to do is weave a story through imagery first, and then use the telling of that story to inspire the direction of the musicians in a completely improvised musical number.
With several screens in full view of the performers, a stream of images (some moving, some still) continue in a fashion that the composer believes will direct the music in such a way that it will both completely surprise him with the result while also appearing completely predictable as an inevitable consequence of the visual direction. Similar to how a novel unfolds in that sometimes the best stories are the ones where the endings are both surprising but also satisfying in that they remain logically consistent with everything laid out prior.
An example of how this could unfold: First image being a still of an open field - next a video of a gentle stream for several beats - the in the corner a small image that begins to grow invading the space of the video of the gentle stream. This growing visual cue could be a time-lapse film of the decay of a perished animal. After this film has completely overtaken the previous serene image it could stop, then reverse while fading out leaving in its place a different landscape, a person, or other scene entirely.
These images and videos are presented silently and the musicians take their cue from them. So while they have an enormous amount of freedom to decide where to go - their shared experiences and humanity will find a degree of commonality that will be apparent through the result of the improvised composition.
10)Joel Leevid - Sculpture who works with delicate but quick setting material and uses sound to mold it.
"Instead of pressing my fingers into clay I use the crashing waves of a Stravinsky Symphony or the gentle coaxing of Miles Davis' "Kind of Blue". Speakers are placed close to the objects which are then covered with a quick setting viscous material - this process repeated allowing the "push" of the music be felt in the material as it alters over time."