Voluntary Sculptures, exhibition catalog
Featuring works by Ian Pedigo, Charlott Markus, Kathrin Sonntag and David Gilbert. Published on occasion of the exhibition, “Voluntary Sculptures.”
Publisher: LM Projects
10 inches H x 8 1/4 inches W
40 pages, color, hardcover
Twisted pieces of paper, toothpaste swashes and soap scum, were just a few of the odd findings and castoff materials Brassaï used as subjects in a 1932 photographic series he coined, ‘Involuntary Sculptures.’ The fetish of the found has a deeply rooted history within photography and sculpture and continues to thrive as a leitmotif well into the 21st century. The four emerging and established artists that dot the globe for ‘Voluntary Sculptures,’ relish the discarded and everyday, building upon traditions from 16th century still life painting to Dada and the readymade. The interplay between physical materiality, photographic representation and site specificity are explored.
Motivated by ideas of permanence, David Gilbert (Los Angeles) uses photography to document specific moments throughout the lifespan of his perpetual constructions of debris playfully staged out of his studio (once a former hotel room). Rubbish such as; eggshells, blankets, paper towel rolls and the like, exist fluidly between sculpture, installation and painting. Some arrangements are lucky enough to become forever immortalized in a photograph. Once documented, the humble and “…unapologetically crappy,” as Gilbert states, become monumental and heroic.
Likewise, Kathrin Sonntag (Berlin) begins with the studio as site for observation and excavation. For the exhibition, Sonntag presents “Heutu Bleibe Ich Daheim,” a slide projection piece that places the simplest of materials in the most precarious arrangements – a standing pair of scissors, an upside down bottle of soda, or a lamp caressing an apple. All found in her studio, each object evokes a quiet stillness with an odd injection of tenderness and humor.
Charlott Markus (Amsterdam) often performs site-specific interventions that disrupt or re-contextualize the natural order of things. Preexisting architectural anomalies within a given space can serve as a template for her photo-based sculptures. In the series ‘The Untitled,’ punctured walls of an abandoned medical clinic in NY become a surface to build abstract arrangements made with found fabric. Their flamboyant prints and colors act as graffiti or a form of mark making.
Ian Pedigo (New York) has been grouped with the likes Richard Tuttle, Ghedi Sebony, B. Wurtz and the long lineage of artists that transform low-grade scrap into prime source material for making work. Unique to Pedigo is his pairings of man made discards with organic matter like slate, birch branches, jasper and mica, often being sited as having spiritual or shamanistic undertones. His sculptures, reductive and fragile, give new meaning to the habits of an over consuming culture.