Months have passed since I posted anything. Like others I have been distracted by a number of competing priorities, but have kept my hand in as much as possible.
The affair with plastic as a medium continues – in fact has perhaps gone over the edge a little bit – as I buy all manner of absurd plexiglass which now threatens to take up all available space.
My initial work with plastic in trying to put out a clean product, continues. Added to this are experiments with a happy-go-lucky kind of drape forming, which is something of an antithesis, or complement, to an otherwise obsessive concern for smooth surfaces and clean edges. The drape forming is a primitive exercise in laying plexiglass sheeting over a variety of shapes and blasting it with a sizable propane burner. The plastic sags and bubbles in the flame and assumes some semblance of the underlying structure.
In this instance I obtained a waffle pattern from an old louvered door. Some colored varnish was dropped into the grooves. When this had hardened I then painted the back in silver. While nothing in particular was anticipated with the exercise, I found a hybrid effect that recalls a sort of medical metallica interspersed with a sense of bubble-wrapped bodily fluids. Sometimes keeping to an intended path and not being drawn off by such happenstance can be most difficult.
A recycling of old masonite strips that have weathered into looping shapes, led to this. An earlier iteration of the same had indicated that painting into the grooves and depressions might lead to something. Again a silver background completes the look. The color always makes me think of Warhol and how he liked his silver paint. I saw an entire room with everything painted silver at his museum in Pittsburgh and it seems to have left its mark. Moreover, the choice of a no-color color like silver solves a dilemma as I can deal with shapes and reflectivities with fewer distractions.
There’s a shape shifting effect in the drape forming that I find beguiling. This is two layers with one a set of letter “a” s whose shapes I emphasized with some stamping in black, covered with another set of shapes in which I pooled water and did some light spray painting, allowing the water to act like a resist. Some bubbling in the plastic is also present. Makes me think of sumi in amber.
A question doesn’t come immediately to mind. But I do wonder – as is often the case with these little explorations – what somebody else might to with the same or similar propositions.