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CONTACT 3017 SUBMISSION MATERIALS:

BACKGROUND INFO

I was messaging with Katherine Tuider (Director of the Honolulu Biennial Foundation) on Instagram, and she put me in touch with Josh Tengan (who I also know from Instagram) and he asked me to put together some context for the piece that I am submitting to PARADISE COVE for CONTACT 3017 so that you could see how this fits with my future-focused work. This page has some of that contextual information, but some of the work is still under review with different galleries and funding sources so please don't share this content publicly just yet.

I no longer live in Hawai'i (I moved to Ohio) but Josh and Katherine mentioned that former Hawai'i artists have been invited to participate in the past, so there could be a chance to include my piece if it fits with the curatorial goals, which would be great because I really miss Hawai'i and want to contribute to the art scene in any way possible.


Here is the piece I want to submit to CONTACT 3017:

Title: VOLCANOES ARE THE ORIGINAL 3D PRINTER, EVERYTHING ELSE IS GEOMIMICRY (2016) (images 1 - 3 below)

Description/Statement: 95% of ocean pollution is plastics. But we still market things like 3D printing pens as toys for children. Geologists discovered plastiglomerate in the sedimentary profile of beaches in Hawai'i a few years ago; it is from ocean trash and beach plastic that melted in beach fires and filled the vesicles of basalt lava. This is an irony because volcanoes are the original 3D printer, printing landforms like the Hawai'ian islands. 3D printing is mimetic of the volcanic process. This object was drawn free-hand with a 3D printing pen and is a formal comparison between the eruption of a volcano and the imprecision of a 3D printing pen toy. The comparison is quite accurate, the way the plastic melts and folds in this object resembles pahoehoe lava. This work tries extra hard to mock our obsession with plastic because I want people to think about the lava as something intelligent when compared to human arrogance in thinking that 3D printing is the best thing in the world.

Material: ABS plastic filament

Dimensions: approximately 12"H x 18"W x 2"D

IMAGE # 1 TITLE: VOLCANOES ARE THE ORIGINAL 3D PRINTER. EVERYTHING ELSE IS GEOMIMICRY (2015) (FRONT)

IMAGE # 1

TITLE: VOLCANOES ARE THE ORIGINAL 3D PRINTER. EVERYTHING ELSE IS GEOMIMICRY (2015) (FRONT)

IMAGE # 2 TITLE: VOLCANOES ARE THE ORIGINAL 3D PRINTER. EVERYTHING ELSE IS GEOMIMICRY (2015) (SIDE PROFILE)

IMAGE # 2

TITLE: VOLCANOES ARE THE ORIGINAL 3D PRINTER. EVERYTHING ELSE IS GEOMIMICRY (2015) (SIDE PROFILE)

IMAGE # 3 TITLE: CONCEPT IMAGE FOR VOLCANOES ARE THE ORIGINAL 3D PRINTER. EVERYTHING ELSE IS GEOMIMICRY (2015)

IMAGE # 3

TITLE: CONCEPT IMAGE FOR VOLCANOES ARE THE ORIGINAL 3D PRINTER. EVERYTHING ELSE IS GEOMIMICRY (2015)


CONTEXT: MY RECENT DEEP FUTURE PROJECTS

My most recent work is looking at the environmental conditions of the deep future (100,000 years from now) in a way that speculates about how humans can begin a collaboration now with different natural forces in the deep future. At the moment this all focuses on the next ice age (which should occur in 100,000 years) and I am building objects and models that can help us imagine that future now. These will be in a gallery exhibition in 2018. I am also building tools that are public sculptural works (to be installed in 2018) but that can be used by future climate events like glaciers. For example, 40,000 years ago glaciers moved a lot of granite boulders from Canada into the United States and this granite acted as a cutting tool to carve and shape the landscape along the way. My sculptures are designed to be cutting tools for a future glacier and they are arranged in landscapes using particular patterns so that when they are used by a glacier they will make a series of predictable marks. But even if my sculptures survive until the next ice age (which I don't think they actually will), no one would ever see the marks that would be left by the sculptures because humans will most likely be extinct. So to help people imagine this future, I am working on paintings and drawings of the future landscapes that help people see what those marks in the environment will look like.

I think it is important to mention that the sculptures are all made using materials that move through the supply chain, some of them are waste materials, others are natural materials, but all of the materials share one thing in common: they are all the result of human-driven over consumption of resources which is at the root of climate change acceleration (the cause of our likely demise). The objects reflect how things like custom kitchen counter tops are against our best interest when it comes to survival and a clear transgression of the land (which humans love to do).

Punctum Books (NYC) will be publishing a book of documentation for this project and I will be able to include the piece I am submitting to CONTACT 3017 in that book which I think would be good exposure for CONTACT to a different audience. This project will include a gallery exhibition and some permanent and temporary public works in 2018 and the book will be published in time for the first gallery show. I say all this to let you know that the thrust of my work is future focused. I'm happy to talk about this more if you want to talk.

Last fall I was invited to give a talk about this project to a group of landscape architects and students at the Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative. They recorded the talk with a cellphone and put it on YouTube (I'm not proud of the quality, but I didn't make the video). If you want to see it, here is the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WWaZ-bW8BlM

Below are select images from the set of models and objects I am building for the gallery exhibit and installation of temporary public work and permanent landscape work in 2018:

IMAGE # 4 TITLE: RECONSTRUCTED BOULDER TYPE 2 (plan view) DESCRIPTION: In the final permanent realization and installation of this project I plan to have a field of these boulders at smaller scales scattered romantically in the landscape. As visitors walk into the field they see the faceted faces of the stones that can almost appear natural, then as they walk past the stones the rectilinear forms of the fractured slabs reveal the human touch of manufacturing. They will be fabricated from the waste products of counter top installation (sink cut-outs, drops, etc).   MATERIALS: granite, stainless steel threaded rod & hardware

IMAGE # 4

TITLE: RECONSTRUCTED BOULDER TYPE 2 (plan view)

DESCRIPTION: In the final permanent realization and installation of this project I plan to have a field of these boulders at smaller scales scattered romantically in the landscape. As visitors walk into the field they see the faceted faces of the stones that can almost appear natural, then as they walk past the stones the rectilinear forms of the fractured slabs reveal the human touch of manufacturing. They will be fabricated from the waste products of counter top installation (sink cut-outs, drops, etc).  

MATERIALS: granite, stainless steel threaded rod & hardware

IMAGE # 5 TITLE: ICEBOX (side view, oblique approach) DESCRIPTION: ICEBOX is designed to collect water while evaporating over time before refilling, it responds to the climate by rocking back and forth on the middle hump. A welded safety screen inside the box prevents people from climbing inside of the object, and the rainwater inside the tank can be treated to prohibit mosquito breeding. MATERIALS: rolled stainless steel, seam welded, stainless welded wire screen

IMAGE # 5

TITLE: ICEBOX (side view, oblique approach)

DESCRIPTION: ICEBOX is designed to collect water while evaporating over time before refilling, it responds to the climate by rocking back and forth on the middle hump. A welded safety screen inside the box prevents people from climbing inside of the object, and the rainwater inside the tank can be treated to prohibit mosquito breeding.

MATERIALS: rolled stainless steel, seam welded, stainless welded wire screen

IMAGE # 6 TITLE: ICEBOX (bottom view) DESCRIPTION: The contours of the base are designed to plow into clay. The models in the gallery exhibit will show this plowing action and the furrowing effect in actual beds of glacial clay. MATERIALS: rolled stainless steel, seam welded, stainless welded wire screen

IMAGE # 6

TITLE: ICEBOX (bottom view)

DESCRIPTION: The contours of the base are designed to plow into clay. The models in the gallery exhibit will show this plowing action and the furrowing effect in actual beds of glacial clay.

MATERIALS: rolled stainless steel, seam welded, stainless welded wire screen

IMAGE # 7 TITLE: RECONSTRUCTED BOULDER SITE DRAWING LOCATION: Mall B, Cleveland Ohio (to be built) DESCRIPTION: I want to place four reconstructed boulders on the northern edge of a lawn in downtown Cleveland, Ohio at the edge of Lake Erie and suggest to site visitors what it might look like if those objects were harnessed by a glacier. Interpretive stations pepper the lawn, including multiple viewing stations made of cut HDPE panel with didactic/interpretive pieces, and also suggested path lines marked out in powdered granite similar to athletic field chalking (optional). The four faceted boulders will be fabricated on welded angle iron frames clad in pattern-cut pieces of granite counter top. The granite pieces will be through-bolted to the steel frames. The faceted shapes are reminiscent of stylized boulders and will stand out as silhouetted forms against the horizon line of the northern edge of Mall B and will look great under a heavy cloudy Cleveland sky, and visual access onto Mall B from above will help people visualize the linear path lines. MATERIALS: angle iron, granite, bolts

IMAGE # 7

TITLE: RECONSTRUCTED BOULDER SITE DRAWING

LOCATION: Mall B, Cleveland Ohio (to be built)

DESCRIPTION: I want to place four reconstructed boulders on the northern edge of a lawn in downtown Cleveland, Ohio at the edge of Lake Erie and suggest to site visitors what it might look like if those objects were harnessed by a glacier. Interpretive stations pepper the lawn, including multiple viewing stations made of cut HDPE panel with didactic/interpretive pieces, and also suggested path lines marked out in powdered granite similar to athletic field chalking (optional). The four faceted boulders will be fabricated on welded angle iron frames clad in pattern-cut pieces of granite counter top. The granite pieces will be through-bolted to the steel frames. The faceted shapes are reminiscent of stylized boulders and will stand out as silhouetted forms against the horizon line of the northern edge of Mall B and will look great under a heavy cloudy Cleveland sky, and visual access onto Mall B from above will help people visualize the linear path lines.

MATERIALS: angle iron, granite, bolts

IMAGE # 8 TITLE: RECONSTRUCTED BOULDER TYPE 1 (side view, front approach) DESCRIPTION: By cladding these faceted frames with pieces of polished granite counter tops, visitors will encounter a material that they are familiar with from domestic life in the public realm and the tangible form of the stylized boulder will reify the abstract idea that granite comes from somewhere. At the same time this raises the opportunity to inform visitors about the glacial history of the geophysical place where Cleveland is and to help visitors imagine what future glaciation could bring to the city. MATERIALS: angle iron, granite counter tops, bolts

IMAGE # 8

TITLE: RECONSTRUCTED BOULDER TYPE 1 (side view, front approach)

DESCRIPTION: By cladding these faceted frames with pieces of polished granite counter tops, visitors will encounter a material that they are familiar with from domestic life in the public realm and the tangible form of the stylized boulder will reify the abstract idea that granite comes from somewhere. At the same time this raises the opportunity to inform visitors about the glacial history of the geophysical place where Cleveland is and to help visitors imagine what future glaciation could bring to the city.

MATERIALS: angle iron, granite counter tops, bolts

IMAGE # 9 TITLE: SEQUENCE STONES (plan views) DESCRIPTION: IMPLEMENTS FOR FUTURE GLACIAL SCOURING is an attempt to specify a design language for how to prime landscapes to change in controlled ways over long stretches of time, specifically how a future glacier could use placed objects as cutting tools to make marks in the landscape. The basic idea in this image is to show some of the ways that sequences of cutting tools could be arranged. MATERIALS: maquettes carved from 3M high density carving foam

IMAGE # 9

TITLE: SEQUENCE STONES (plan views)

DESCRIPTION: IMPLEMENTS FOR FUTURE GLACIAL SCOURING is an attempt to specify a design language for how to prime landscapes to change in controlled ways over long stretches of time, specifically how a future glacier could use placed objects as cutting tools to make marks in the landscape. The basic idea in this image is to show some of the ways that sequences of cutting tools could be arranged.

MATERIALS: maquettes carved from 3M high density carving foam

IMAGE # 10 TITLE: SAMPLE GROOVE PROFILES (section views) DESCRIPTION: The idea in this image is to show some of the cross-section views of the types of groove profiles that could be designed and predicted by using particular arrangements of cutting tools. Site considerations including hardness of substrate, hardness of cutting tool material, and cutting tool function are all a part of the design language and are specified in the accompanying book and gallery exhibition. MATERIALS: cast cement models

IMAGE # 10

TITLE: SAMPLE GROOVE PROFILES (section views)

DESCRIPTION: The idea in this image is to show some of the cross-section views of the types of groove profiles that could be designed and predicted by using particular arrangements of cutting tools. Site considerations including hardness of substrate, hardness of cutting tool material, and cutting tool function are all a part of the design language and are specified in the accompanying book and gallery exhibition.

MATERIALS: cast cement models


OTHER RELATED WORK (2015-2017)

Here is some of my environmentally-oriented work that might be interesting to you. Common themes are resource-extraction & over-consumption; comparing the supply chain to natural forces (supply chains move natural materials faster and farther than nature ever could); mindfulness and empathy with ecosystems, and looking at other ways our behaviors mimic geologic forces.

IMAGE # 11 TITLE: KEEP US ALIVE (2016) DESCRIPTION: This is a sealed system with a terrarium planting embedded in cement with a small red push button that activates a grow light inside the cylinder. Viewers participate in keeping the plant alive with the discrete action of pushing the button. This raises a consideration: If they will take an action to nourish an ecosystem that they cannot see (because it is embedded in cement), what actions can people be encouraged to take to nourish the ecosystem that they are a part of? Too little interaction and the plant will die from lack of light, and too much interaction results in the plant being burned by excessive light - participants must find the right mix of interaction. It's kind of like a Tamagotchi digital pet (something I never had as a kid but always wanted), meets Schrödinger's cat, meets Hans Haacke's Condensation Cube (1965). MATERIALS: LED grow light assembly, acrylic terrarium, selaginella moss, cement, empathy, faith

IMAGE # 11

TITLE: KEEP US ALIVE (2016)

DESCRIPTION: This is a sealed system with a terrarium planting embedded in cement with a small red push button that activates a grow light inside the cylinder. Viewers participate in keeping the plant alive with the discrete action of pushing the button. This raises a consideration: If they will take an action to nourish an ecosystem that they cannot see (because it is embedded in cement), what actions can people be encouraged to take to nourish the ecosystem that they are a part of? Too little interaction and the plant will die from lack of light, and too much interaction results in the plant being burned by excessive light - participants must find the right mix of interaction. It's kind of like a Tamagotchi digital pet (something I never had as a kid but always wanted), meets Schrödinger's cat, meets Hans Haacke's Condensation Cube (1965).

MATERIALS: LED grow light assembly, acrylic terrarium, selaginella moss, cement, empathy, faith

IMAGE # 12 TITLE: COMING TO TERMS WITH MY GLACIAL NOW (ongoing) LOCATION: The terminal moraine of the last glacial maximum (~40,000 years ago). DESCRIPTION: In this project I embody a glacial force to make a mark. I built a hand tool that held a block of ice with embedded granite stones and used it to scribe a line into a slab of limestone at multiple sites of glacial significance around the Great Lakes region. The motion is reminiscent of carpentry techniques and each block of ice is a consumable that lasted approximately 20 minutes of continual grinding motion. Video documentation available.  MATERIALS: poplar, hardware, ice, granite, limestone

IMAGE # 12

TITLE: COMING TO TERMS WITH MY GLACIAL NOW (ongoing)

LOCATION: The terminal moraine of the last glacial maximum (~40,000 years ago).

DESCRIPTION: In this project I embody a glacial force to make a mark. I built a hand tool that held a block of ice with embedded granite stones and used it to scribe a line into a slab of limestone at multiple sites of glacial significance around the Great Lakes region. The motion is reminiscent of carpentry techniques and each block of ice is a consumable that lasted approximately 20 minutes of continual grinding motion. Video documentation available. 

MATERIALS: poplar, hardware, ice, granite, limestone

IMAGE # 13 TITLE: LAND PLANE (2016) (duration: 5 hours) LOCATION: my studio DESCRIPTION: In this project I embody the glacial ice to make a mark. Supply chains move granite massive distances, faster and farther than natural glaciers move granite erratics, and I wanted to use that concept to play with how human systems are often able to surpass natural systems. In our era, the most common use for supply-chain delivered granite is counter top manufacturing. I took a piece of granite backsplash and used it to grind a stone smooth with a repetitive planing motion over five hours. MATERIALS: granite back-splash, stone

IMAGE # 13

TITLE: LAND PLANE (2016) (duration: 5 hours)

LOCATION: my studio

DESCRIPTION: In this project I embody the glacial ice to make a mark. Supply chains move granite massive distances, faster and farther than natural glaciers move granite erratics, and I wanted to use that concept to play with how human systems are often able to surpass natural systems. In our era, the most common use for supply-chain delivered granite is counter top manufacturing. I took a piece of granite backsplash and used it to grind a stone smooth with a repetitive planing motion over five hours.

MATERIALS: granite back-splash, stone

IMAGE # 14 TITLE: EROSION / ACCRETION (2015) LOCATION: Castle Valley, Utah DESCRIPTION: A sandstone hood ornament and collection boxes were attached to a taxi driving from New York to Los Angeles for a project called The Drive by Guillaume Le Vallois. The idea was to build analog sensors that looked at wind-based erosion and the accumulation of debris and sedimentation to see if distance could stand in as a measure of time in geomorphological terms. MATERIALS: sandstone, wax, brackets & bolts, paint

IMAGE # 14

TITLE: EROSION / ACCRETION (2015)

LOCATION: Castle Valley, Utah

DESCRIPTION: A sandstone hood ornament and collection boxes were attached to a taxi driving from New York to Los Angeles for a project called The Drive by Guillaume Le Vallois. The idea was to build analog sensors that looked at wind-based erosion and the accumulation of debris and sedimentation to see if distance could stand in as a measure of time in geomorphological terms.

MATERIALS: sandstone, wax, brackets & bolts, paint

IMAGE # 15 TITLE: STICKER KOAN #1 UNDERUTILIZED COMMUNICATION CHANNEL UNTIL NOW DESCRIPTION: Alert your local capitalist whenever you find an empty space that could use an advertisement. By placing one of these stickers you make better use of the space and when people read the message they will experience gratitude for your defense of capitalistic noise. NOTE: there are 100 of these floating around Hawai'i, let me know if you see any.

IMAGE # 15

TITLE: STICKER KOAN #1 UNDERUTILIZED COMMUNICATION CHANNEL UNTIL NOW

DESCRIPTION: Alert your local capitalist whenever you find an empty space that could use an advertisement. By placing one of these stickers you make better use of the space and when people read the message they will experience gratitude for your defense of capitalistic noise.

NOTE: there are 100 of these floating around Hawai'i, let me know if you see any.


ONE LAST THING...

I mentioned that Punctum Books is publishing my documentation, but I want to also let you know that I have a different book that is being released this summer with Punctum, and since you are artists and curators, I thought you might like to know about it. Email me your address and I'll send you a copy when it goes to print. It's called Hack the Experience: Tools for Artists from Cognitive Science. Here is a link to the book page on the Punctum website: https://punctumbooks.com/titles/hack-the-experience-new-tools-for-artists-from-cognitive-science/

And here is a pic of the book cover:

Feel free to look around the rest of my site, and let me know if you have any questions, I'd love to talk. I'm @GEOCOG (Instagram) & @RyanDewey (Twitter).

Mahalo!

RD