Sculpture 1 HW for Tuesday 2/3

Read the first two sections of Elaine Scarry’s On Beauty and Being Just: “ON BEAUTY AND BEING WRONG” and “BEAUTY PROMPTS A COPY OF ITSELF”:scarry_onbeauty:pdf
We will begin the project with a technical exercise. This process will teach you how to make a flexible mold. For Tues 2/3 bring in 3 different objects for molding. These objects MUST have an interesting texture. They could also be unusual or beautiful in some way (Elaine Scarry), and/or have great conceptual potential (Fred Wilson). Do not bring in anything too precious, it could easily be destroyed in the mold-making process.

Materials List for 2/3:

1. 2-3 caulk-style tubes of 100% clear silicone rubber (depending on the size of objects)(Hardware Store)
2. 1 bottle of dish soap (grocery store)
3. 1 box of plasticine (Hobby Lobby)
4. If you are interested in molding a porous object, you will need to purchase a sealant such as shellac or clear polyurethane.
5. One or several materials for casting your object: wax, plaster, cement, soap, sugar, jello..
6. Carving tools.
7. Paints (optional)

I will elaborate on the project parameters when we meet on Thursday.

Sculpture 1, Project 1: 100 objects

From Elaine Scarry’s On Beauty and Being Just:
On replication:
“Beauty brings copies of itself into being. It makes us draw it, take photographs of it, or describe it to other people. Sometimes it gives rise to exact replication and other times to resemblances and still other times to things whose connection to the original site of inspiration is unrecognizable.”
On education:
“This willingness continually to revise one’s own location in or- der to place oneself in the path of beauty is the basic impulse un- derlying education. One submits oneself to other minds (teachers) in order to increase the chance that one will be looking in the right direction when a comet suddenly cuts through a certain patch of sky.”
On love:
“The generation is unceasing. Beauty, as both Plato’s Symposium and everyday life confirm, prompts the begetting of children: when the eye sees someone beautiful, the whole body wants to reproduce the person.”
Project Guidelines:
This project will require you to find and reproduce 100 objects using casting techniques. Like the Systems project from 3D Design, you will be asked to consider the concept (meaning) of your project including the final installation, set-up and display.
Think about Elaine Scarry’s ideas about beauty and replication, as well as, the way that Fred Wilson uses objects to send a message. Which approach will you take? It could be a combination of both.
Some casting materials will be provided for you: wax, cement, alginate, and plaster. Specialized casting materials such as soap, jello, sugar (etc) must be supplied by you. You will also be required to supply your mold-making materials (silicone, etc).
In the coming week I will ask you to compose a schedule of production, this schedule will include weekly goals for casting and completing objects. Your ability to adhere to this schedule will be a factor in your final grade for this project.
Our critique for this project is scheduled to begin on Tuesday February 24th.

Bas Jan Ader

Dutch/Californian artist Bas Jan Ader was last seen in 1975 when he took off in what would have been the smallest sailboat ever to cross the Atlantic. He left behind a small oeuvre, often using gravity as a medium, which more than 30 years after his disappearance at sea is more influential than ever before.

Laura Splan

“Blood Scarf depicts a scarf knit out of clear vinyl tubing. An intravenous device emerging out of the user’s hand fills the scarf with blood. The implied narrative is a paradoxical one in which the device keeps the user warm with their blood while at the same time draining their blood drop by drop.”

Miranda July: Eleven Heavy Things
Eleven Heavy Things, 2009

Eleven Heavy Things, created for the 53rd International Art Exhibition at the Venice Biennale, is comprised of eleven sculptural works installed in an enclosed garden within Giardino delle Vergini. The cast fiber-glass, steel-lined pieces are designed for interaction: pedestals to stand on, tablets with holes for body parts, and free-standing abstract headdresses. A series of three pedestals in ascending height, The Guilty One, The Guiltier One, The Guiltiest One, ask the viewer to ascribe their guilt relative to the people around them. A large flat shape, hand-painted with Burberry plaid, hovers on a pole, waiting to become someone’s aura. A series of tablets invite heads, arms, legs and one finger: This is not the first hole my finger has been in, nor will it be the last. A wider pedestal for two people to hug on reads, We don!t know each other, we’re just hugging for the picture….
July assumes and invites the picture — these are eleven photo opportunities, in a city where one is always clutching a camera. Though the work begins as sculpture, it becomes a performance that is only complete when these tourist photos are uploaded onto personal blogs and sent in emails — at which point the audience changes, and the subject clearly becomes the participants, revealing themselves through the work.

Eleven Heavy Things has been installed in the Center Lawn of Union Square Park in New York from May 29 to October 03, 2010.

Eleven Heavy Things has been installed at the Pacific Design Center in Los Angeles from July 23 to October 23, 2011.

Production of this work was supported by Deitch Projects.


And this:


Rebecca Horn


Unicorn 1968-9 by Rebecca Horn born 1944


In 1968 Rebecca Horn produced her first body sculptures, in which she attached objects and instruments to the human body, taking as her theme the contact between a person and his or her environment. Einhorn (Unicorn) is one of Horn’s best known performance pieces: a long horn worn on her head, its title a pun on the artist’s name. She presented Einhorn at the 1972 Documenta.[5] Its subject is a woman who is described by Horn as “very bourgeois” is “21 years-old and ready to marry. She is spending her money on new bedroom furniture,” walks through a field and forest on a summer morning wearing only a white horn protruding directly from the front of the top of her head and the straps holding it there. These straps are almost identical to the ones worn in Frida Kahlo’s painting Broken Column. The image, with wheat floating around the woman’s hips, is simultaneously mythic and modern. (wikipedia)


Guidelines for Independent Research

For each project in this course you are asked to complete a series of independent research related to the specific content of the project.

Your independent research can be in the form of images found on the web, links to relevant content, or articles/readings associated with this content.

The deadline for uploading this to the dropbox is the critique day of the project, but it is recommended that you complete the research earlier on in the timeline for each project. This research will help you to make more informed, interesting, and unique decisions regarding your own approach to the assignment.

We will spend a portion of the beginning of each class meeting looking at and discussing your research as a group.

Guidelines for Independent Research:

You have 10pts for Independent Research added to each project grade in this class. (note: for Sculpt 3 this is 10pts INCLUDED in your project grade)
Independent Research can be two things:

1. Digital images related to the current assignment. This category is wide open. These images can be abstract or representational, created by you or “found” by you. (Upload to the D2L Dropbox)

2. Internet links to relevant content related to the current project. (create a link within the “Comments” section of the D2L Dropbox)

The quality of your source material will be taken into account (aka: Pinterest vs. the New York Times). Cite your source in the comment area of your submission. For resources follow this link:

**NOTE: points will be based on the QUALITY of your research, not quantity**

Introducing: The Performative Object (Sculpt 2/3: Project 1)

The next project assigned to Sculpture 2/3: The Performative Object

Since the 1970’s sculptors have been (increasingly) interested in the relationship of objects and materials to context, experience, and the human body. This has resulted in many hybrid forms of sculpture often incorporating time and performance.

Your assignment will be to develop a piece that deals with interactivity and/or sculptural props. Below you will see a gif of Richard Serra’s “hand catching lead” film from 1968. He was a forerunner to this approach of thinking about sculpture.

Richard Serra: Hand Catching Lead

The work and research completed for this project could result in an object (or grouping of objects) that function as props or accessories to a performative work OR they could “perform” on their own via a built-in element of functionality, design, or interactivity.

For example: Lindsey Lawson’s “lamp” sculptures:
This series takes the functionality of a lamp and combines it with the metaphorical content associated with the “idea bulb.”
Ann Hamilton has been working in this way for some time:


And finally Ann Hamilton’s Body Object series from 1984,1991:

Schedule changes for next week

Due to our ongoing Graphic Design Faculty search:

Sculpture 1 will begin at 12:00pm instead of 11:10am on both Tuesday and Thursday.

Sculpture 2/3 will begin at 3:00pm instead of 2:20pm on both Tuesday and Thursday.

Virginia will be gone the week of March 2-6th to be a visiting artist at the Anderson Ranch Art Center in Snowmass, Colorado.

Sculpture 2/3 Assignment 1: Getting to know you


Pick a partner. Interview them using the questions below. We will spend Thursday’s class on interviews (1/22). Make a PDF or Keynote presentation that uses their answers to these questions (Homework!). Be ready to present their work on Tuesday 1/27. Bring a flash drive. Presentations will only be accepted in a pdf or keynote format on a flash drive at the beginning of class. NO PREZIS!!

Your presentation should last between 7-10 more, no less. It should include at least five images of the artist’s work. These images will supplement the artist’s answers to the interview questions.

Your homework for Thursday (1/21) is to bring images of your best work on a flash drive to share with your partner during class. If you have a laptop, you can bring that also.
Interview Questions:

Where are you from?

Why are you here?

What is something that we should know about you?

How did you first become interested in making ART!?

What is your work about? What themes do you find yourself returning to over and over again? Are you interested in stylistic continuity? or experimentation? (are these mutually exclusive?)

What do you consider to be your artistic strengths?

What do you consider to be your weaknesses?

In order to provide us with a context for thinking about your work, what artists or movements in art history inform your practice?

How does your work relate to that of practicing contemporary artists? Name a few that you look to for inspiration.

Please share your ideas about how the media, materials, or processes that interest you relate to the concepts or ideas evident in your work?

What are your long-term goals for your work and your life?

Does your work draw heavily from your own life?

Do you start out with a concrete concept or idea for how your piece will be, or do you create as you go?

How heavily do you research before starting a piece?

What do you do when you feel like you’re lacking in ideas/the desire to make art?

Do your family and friends support what you do? Do you feel that you have a support network in place?

Do you have a specific goal for how the viewer sees your work/ experiences your work?

What are some strategies that you use for responding to material/process/concept throughout the act of making?

Declare something. What is your truth?

Other questions?…

Collections – the work of Fred Wilson (Sculpt 1 written assignment due 1/26)

Fred Wilson is a contemporary artist who re-arranges museum collections to reveal racial injustices and prejudices within institutions (such as art museums). This artistic practice is often referred to as “institutional critique.

A change of heart – Fred Wilson’s impact on museums from Victoria and Albert Museum on Vimeo.

In one-two paragraphs, due Monday 1/26, answer the questions:

What is Fred Wilson’s work about?”

What is he trying to do with his work?”

What is does the term “institutional critique” refer to?

You can upload your .pdf or .docx files to our class’s dropbox folder on D2L labelled “One Paragraph Response”