A vintage 1930’s suspended transducer microphone, in working order, would cost the equivalent to the entire props budget for this show. Salvaged [less-vintage] microphone pieces, wire, springs, some foil tape and a bathroom towel ring can be crafted to give the same look, and cost a fraction of an actual vintage model. Taking into account the forgiving grace of at least twenty feet from the audience, and I believe the Von Trapp Family Singers won’t know the difference. Edelweiss.
There are times that you remember the past and miss the days gone by. There are times that throw you into the present. There are times that are full of emotion and mourning. There are times that you celebrate what the future has to hold. There are times that you cannot believe the love that surrounds you. There are times that you are thankful for the rain. There are times that you celebrate the sun.
And then there are times that you build a misting machine sculpture of salvaged and recycled materials and shoot LED lights at it that are self-sustaining droplets. And there are times that digging through a long forgotten prop storage leaves you covered in dust, older than you know.
June, was all of these times.
Project MIST has taken many forms in the last couple years, forever evolving and moving toward a bigger whole. Like the waters of Niagara, it ebbs and flows through various incarnations. Currently I am helping LK in the design and creation of a living museum prototype, or as we affectionately call it, the mist lab. It will be a sculpture where we can test the effects of light and video onto mist. Incorporating sustainable power via solar panels and batteries; and building a base out of reclaimed wood, we are fabricating an eco-friendly experimentation and an evocative environment. Power & Poetry, meet No Tether.
This past weekend I was hired as a crafts person to create an evocative patch of wheat grass for a production of Dancing at Lughnasa. The morning began by rescuing some paint cans from the dumpster to use as the base. We weighted the cans with wood blocks and scavenged some packing foam that also was on its way to the dumpster. A few [hundred] poked holes later, and the cans were filled with dried grass. To finish the look, faux green onion grass was draped over the side. Not a bad way to spend a Saturday, not a bad way to recycle some dumpster finds.
Cause for Mass Appeal was a grand time! The runway overflowed with incredible talent. It was exciting to be a part of another successful Buffalo fashion event.
My wearable art piece was a sculpture of blue-green insulation felt, tiers of plastic seam strips, ruffles of black seam filler, pleats of gray insulation felt, corset details of asphalt paper, nail fringe, and a belt of metal perforated banding. The dress covered a hoop skirt of metal strips, plastic banding, and zip ties. Grommets, and twine held everything together. My model carried a fan of metal & nails, and the same detail was woven into her hair. Twisted nails as earrings were a last minute addition. If the Yeah Yeah Yeahs did a cover of Mozart.
Let them eat [nail] cake!
This past weekend I started work on a wearable art piece for Cause for Mass Appeal. Each participating artist is teamed with a local company who sponsors each piece. I am working with Sanders Roofing Co. When I met with the folks at Sanders I learned that the business of roofing is all about layers. Layers of insulation, layers of waterproofing, layers of adhesion, layers of sealers. What better expression of layers in fashion than the extravagant dresses of the 18th century? So begins my two week challenge of creating a corset, full hoop skirt and head piece out of roofing materials.
I am involved in a joint research venture with several colleagues. This weekend we had a gallery presentation of some of our individual work. My contribution was a light and materials site-specific sculpture that was built and displayed in the front gallery window. The projection behind the sculpture was designed by Chantal Calato. The entire gallery exhibit had a sense of duality and melding of imagery between individual pieces. It was serendipitous that our pieces collided. My artistic statement is below:
Niagara Falls have long been a source of inspiration. They are an impressive power and have been a source of power. The amount of water that tumbles over the precipice is staggering. The thickness and texture of the water at this point are qualities that are continually intriguing.
At the base of the Horseshoe Falls stands the Ontario Power Plant building, once the harnesser of hydroelectric power for the region. Now inoperable and abandoned, it is a hulking reminder of time forgotten.
Through site observation and history past, “Power & Poetry” seeks to capture these inspirations.