Sunday, November 29, 2015

Allan Kapprow, eliminating the audience (fluxus and happenings)
For anyone interested in social practices *cough cough Emily*
It has been pretty influential as to how I'm considering displaying my piece... or not displaying it

Monday, November 23, 2015


Sunday, November 22, 2015

Project 1 | Reflection

Project 1

Project one was a project that went through many phases, ideations, and allowed me to gain much knowledge and experience with materiality, new processes, and craftsmanship. It was stressful at times but extremely rewarding, not in the sense that my piece came out just as I had intended it to, but in that it was an extremely valuable learning process.

I experienced and learned about a material I had never worked with but always wanted to, wood. I was in the wood shop for many nights in a row, working meticulously with the nature of the material, not against it. I was ambitious in that I decided to not buy new wood, I was given old hardwood that was in terrible shape, and I took it upon myself to mill it to perfection. In an extension of the theme of space, I also wanted to put myself in a new environment, the wood shop, and work away for endless hours, gaining a new skill while being dedicated and honest to the craft. It became a ritual and a meditative act to mill the panels to perfection. I was meticulous and a perfectionist. 

In addition to wanting to learn how to use the machines in the wood shop and to work with such a beautiful material, also chose to do this tedious process instead of buying new wood, because I thought a piece so formalistic and minimal deserved high attention to the materiality and should make up for the simplicity of the aesthetic in the craft. Though it may not be apparent that the wood was dedicatedly transformed, I learned how to work with and try to honor the material, which reinforces the concept behind such a minimal piece.

I also challenged myself to work with even more unfamiliar materials, and when given the option to change them, I decided not to and stick it out. I worked with stainless steel and it was tough, with issues cutting, but I got the product I intended, and it worked out.

I also learned a lot about gaining resources and working with others for help. The guys in the wood shop were awesome in teaching me about each machine I used and also helped with production in the wooden frames. I reached out and made great connections with those at Boone Welding and took many trips there to get the stainless steel just right.

There were many successful aspects of the piece and notes on the experience are as such –

The scale is inviting and harmonious in its proportions
The craft is very well-done and shows attention to detail
A respect for the materials is apparent
There are a lot of shadows and reflective light play which makes the formal piece dynamic
There is a subtle dialogue and connection between the frames and also between the space
The frames look different in various settings based off of light

Ways to improve or considerations are as such –

Consider the color of the raw materials and think about a stain
What happens if these frames are placed in natural landscapes
Play up the lighting even more to create more reflections and shadows
Think about how the dialogue can be pushed more, perhaps more dramatic lighting will do this

I'm proud of my dedication to project one, despite it not turning out as cool as I had thought it would from my sketches, inspiration, and ambitions. It is intended to be in settings with various types of lighting and not in regular indoor lighting. It was rough in that it took so many hours, I had to go to the welding shop many times, there were issues with cutting the stainless steel, it was very costly, and I was going through a spell of my illness, but I pulled through.

In the future, I think I want to stain the wood to make it more rich and dark, but I don't know what stain color to choose. I would also like to play with light and environment. I would like to see how it is perceived in a landscape. I feel that if you came upon this in a forest, you would want to meditate on gazing through these spaces and see a lot of reflection and shadows with the light that comes through. I also would like to shine various lights on it in different ways to allow the light to reflect off of the stainless steel onto each frame in ways that allow the frames to have more of a dialogue and a dynamic interaction.

I feel the piece was overall successful and it gave way to a lot more than meets the eye for me. The formal qualities reinforced the theme of space by showcasing wooden frames whose scale and familiar materials invite the viewer to crouch and meditate, gazing through open window-like frames. Space is shown through these comfortable units that come together to reflect light between them and communicate an intimacy of space and connection. The ways that the light hits and shadows form translate a sense of dialogue between each frame.

The concept of the piece that is reinforced is an intimate and subtle, yet almost impossible connections between separate forms through a dialogue facilitated by light, line, form, and space. The negative space is in the soul of each form and gives way for passaged between them, though not entirely explicit.

This piece actually came about from heart break and studies of Orion's belt. It also conjures my thought process behind this piece that involved relationships and trust between individuals. So close and so identical, yet so disconnected, and wary of the invitation because it looks too perfect.

News | Winnebago Workshop

Alec Soth
Winnebago Workshop
Knight Foundation Grants


Li Hongbo

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Project 3 | Ideation

Project 3


Idea 1

My first idea was about my concern with food waste and I wanted to create products that used composted or old food and turned them into reusable goods, like creating fruit leather and use sheets of that to create goods, but I couldn't think of how to further this idea at the moment.


Idea 2

I have been interested in working with wax castings and paper.

I was thinking a lot about using two materials together, one of which can be molded and is pliable, and one that has a set structure and shape. Their interaction is what interests me.

I have been thinking about death and ideas of the afterlife, and I wanted to create organic, ghost-like, and ephemeral structures that are very light, airy, and delicate. I'm not sure of what shapes I will use, but I was thinking about having them suspended to be spirits and energy.

I also want to disassociate the piece with material culture and create it out of recyclable materials, to further convey the themes of renewal and regeneration, and that are not very expensive. I may not be able to use wax for these reasons, but I have been and will be doing research on the implications of the used materials and what connotations are associated with each. 

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Jimmie Durham Talks

News on DiMoDa Museum

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Shia LaBeouf is watching all of his movies right now

Shia LaBeoufis doing a performance where he is watching all of his movies straight for 3 days right now.



Working Title: Provide a title for your project.

Project Abstract: Briefly describe in 2-3 paragraphs the concept, inspiration, motivation, and idea behind the project.

Process/Method: Describe how you will fabricate your project, including materials and methods.

Location/Presentation: How do you envision presenting this work? How will the audience encounter it?

Material List: List all materials required for the creation of this project.

Time-Line: Break down the project into tasks to be completed at a certain date; be realistic. It is good to work backward from your due date.


Images: Include conceptual drawing, sketches, collages, etc. of the project to be completed. Have multiple views if necessary. Include images of similar past work if relevant.
Include 5 images total added within your proposal document.

Resources for research: What has influenced the conceptualization and implementation of this project?

Why is this project important at this time and place?  What role does this project play within the genre and the larger community?

News for today

University of California, Berkeley, launches new website featuring their archive of over 10,000 cylinder recordings. Cylinder recordings were used before the invention of vinyl records, tapes, cds, etc. I think this article can start a conversation in relation to the craftsman: how we make things to archive sound. Digital recordings in comparison to vinyl, cylinders, tapes. People have been reinventing ways to store information (the spotify era), but what is lost? Also, this is a good example of archiving and preserving old ways of doing things. Cool stuff. Here's a link to the actual website:

Monday, November 9, 2015

Ted Talk | Why We Make

Here is that great TED talk about the intent behind our work and getting to the 'why' we do or make something rather than just the 'what.'

Friday, November 6, 2015

Tea-go Trip. Process statement. Documentation. Reflection.

How wonderful it would be, thought I, to have tea with strangers at bus stops and stuff. I haven't made it to a bus stop yet, but I distributed many little cups of tea to people through this project in various situations.
My aim was to make 100 tea cups. I did it all in one weekend, hitting about 85 cups. I built them all in a kind of industrial wabi-sabi kinda way. I spent 25 hours pinching clay in 3 days, getting myself sick in the process. It would be no surprise if my project-induced sickness was the first domino to fall in this last months epidemic.
All the cups were relatively small but varied in size. They have a lava rock type of glaze on them which, combined with their organic shape, makes them very tactile and intimate objects.
I gave cups to some people so they could become part of their daily matters. One person wrote, "This cup said gotchu and caught a scalding drop in its rough bottom skin. Yet it cradled my lips ergonomically with its ultimately smooth upper skin. Its scale exactly fit my rounded palm, radiating comfortable life-like warmth, and my nose to mouth distance, reminding me of its I-gotchu-ness by tapping me on the nose as I sipped my last sips. Its shape was stout, reassuring, steady, and strong. Quality over quantity, it said, what you do, do well."
Another set of cups stayed in my home and was used in various situations; conversations over tea, breakfast outside, an excuse to hang out longer, and tea parties around a bon fire to name a few. The cups were actively fused with daily life.
A third group was used in UF's pop-up culture event. I set up a table with two other ceramicists, Bridget Fairbanks and Eddie Dominguez, and we served people tea in my cups using Bridget's pitchers.
After these teacups were used in these situations, I fired s¥mbols onto them. The symbols are words with all the letters stacked on top of each other. Over time, they will build up on the cups and become as much a part of the piece as the stamps on asian scroll paintings.
Critique was just as much a part of this process. It was a performance to add to the list of where the teacups have interacted and a chance to learn about social interaction with tea as the hook to make a certain type of intimate experience happen.

I began this project with zen intentions, but found myself to be like a mad hatter who's trying to figure out how being peaceful works. I was inspired by the tea ceremony and all its life reverie. Why not revere the simplicity of life all the time? This escalated into just another complexity in the seriocomic drama of life. A spiritual tea-go.
I learned a little bit about being social. I learned a little bit about how people interact with these little intimate forms. I learned a little more about my own ridiculous tendencies. But it all felt somehow forced... nothing was real to me. Stuff happened. Life happened. I'm uninterested though. I have expectations as to how things should be, how I want them. I habitually see myself as separate from the world, a Thing with expectations, even the expectation of nonexpectation. Oh circular thought, my love for you will be my own doom.
I find it interesting how far removed from original intentions things can become, especially when it comes to the pursuit of Truth. The more we try to understand it or experience it, the more it baffles us and the more separate we become from it. It has turned into an idea we have to fit ourselves and our experience into.
This was the essence of what happened in my final performance, a maniacal and uncomfortable presence of what not to do in the pursuit of Truth.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Final Documentation & Reflection For Process Project

The Art of the Project: Reflection 

The audience kneels or bends. The room is silent as they pay respect to the objects, contemplating their contents as they try to puzzle together what they all might mean. Each person has a story they want to tell about the person they feel is represented. The small vials are medical, but also memorial; they present as both a scientific sample and as part of a memory. Some vials are filled to the brim while others have only an iota of substance in them. This variation in the fill lines implies that what exists in the vial is all that could be preserved. A few of the audience members read it as a chronological narrative- from left to right; others read it as non-sequential and see this as amplifying the investigation required on part of the viewer. The gold leaf and marble shelf, reminiscent of a mausoleum, merge with the repetition of the vials and small black caps to blend science and religion. Audience members mentioned that the vials seemed to appear in categories: grief (tears, funeral brochure, memorial flowers), belongings/ the body (perfume, hair, blood, fuzz from a relic), and actions (burnt brillo, motor oil, melted coke bag). This being said, it didn’t appear that a discernible statement was being made although the process was evident. This rings true with where I stand on the process/ sculpture. Some of the strengths that were mentioned were the sculptures ability to relay memory, the placement on the wall, the presentation, and the the labeling of the vials. In the future, though I like the pencil on the wall, I would like to present the sculpture with toe tags as labels instead. An interesting moment in critique, for me, was the discussion of the term “candy coating.” As it is both an idiom and an object, it becomes both metaphor and reality. I like this because I had applied the phrase “not candy coating it” to the materials I chose to present (i.e. melted coke bag, medical paraphernalia, etc.). Altogether, I feel that the sculpture turned out to be a successful material manifestation of both my sister and the process of my particular form of grief. Death is something that I carry with me; though it may not be at the forefront of my thoughts, it is always lurking closely nearby. That being said, finally getting a chance to make a sculpture dealing directly with my sister’s death feels exactly as her death has been: bittersweet.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Project 2 Documentation, and Process

       Theses are images of screen shots of my project 2 presentation. It was a PowerPoint presentation with video and audio with comparison of prehistoric Terror Birds and modern Parrots. I used found photos and educational videos on Terror Birds and home footage with educational video on parrots. The home made video of the parrots are one that I have taken of my bird and other people with with parrots. I am not sure how I can attach a PowerPoint to the Blogger, so these are some screen shots of the video.
Comparing skulls sizes
This is a explanation of Terror Bird feet and ankles
This is a parrot named Ramsey with owner Joshua Johnson exemplifying parrot legs
Egg Comparisons, with my Cockatiel's egg

This was the second project development--zoo of the artist

    All of my documentation and process of the project has been documented in a designated sketchbook for this project. My project went through a series of a few changes. My original project was a human bird cage store, then it changed to the artist in a zoo to their medium, to the terror bird parrot comparison. Here are a few photos of some pages in the sketchbook, in order from the process of the work. There are some pages that have photos you can flip and see under it, so there are quite a few things that are not visible. 
This was the first project idea--human bird cage pet shop
This is a photo of the new calendar and project sheet written after the talk with Erin.
This was a photo of Mario Muntis and his parrots (a species called Budgies)  with notes.

This is a photo of some of my personal research scanned for the project sketchbook, and the idea of modern Terror Bird comparisons.
After talking to  Erin, I decided to use the research I was already collecting out of personal interest and something I had more of a passion in for this project.

Sir Thomas Herbert 1634--inspiration to Cokatoo Intaglio Print

Mario Muntis and his Parakeets
Mario Munti and his Budgies

I posted the presentation to youtube:

Monday, November 2, 2015

Project 2 | Install & Showing

Project 2
Art of the Project/Process

In collaboration with John Cage

Link to piece that accompanies the installation

Note: The shadows in the dim lighting of the space add to the sense of hybridity and connection because I positioned the lights to create double, crossed-shadows behind each flower. The affect makes the piece more successful than shown and I wish I could photograph it.

Project 2 | Final Development & Photos

Project 2
Final Development

I painted the board white. The element of chance that I created was to only use flowers/plants sourced from one location each time I set this piece up. This time I was restricted to only what was offered at last week's downtown Farmer's Market. There, I had wonderful dialogues with farmers learning about what types of species these are, how to care for them (little do they know I was going to splice them), and just enjoyed the connection to these locals. It was part of the process and concept to engage with these people in research about the plants and it was like I was also collaborating with them, for they grew my medium.

I also wanted to follow the concept of engaging and having an appreciation for ones environment and I wanted to appreciate each landscape as a unique place. I created the constraints to only use flora from one landscape. This piece as a level of impermanence as the fresh plants die, and it also will look different each time I install it, because I have to work with whatever is available at the location I went to the day before.

Project 2 | Reflection

Project 2 Reflection

I think I will call this piece Dialogue. As I worked through my thoughts on coming together, creating something from nothing, and hybridity, this piece really came together when I added in other sensory elements like scent and sound. After a very lonesome, self-reflective process of meticulously crafting these new species, I realized that I could take a new approach to collaboration where I work with a composer and also take a step back as the artist and allow two flowers, two entities, two species to work together. 

This piece has much to do about dialogues. There is a dialogue between me and the landscapes in which I sourced the flowers. There is a dialogue between me and my intimate space where I work and listen to music to create these new species, (going mad in the process), there is a dialogue between two species of plants coming together, there is a dialogue between me and the composer John Cage as I use his music and process in parallel with mine, and there is a final dialogue with the presented manipulated landscape and the engagement of the viewers around it.

I was entirely pleased with the comments I received during the critique and the dialogue that occurred. The viewers took note of every decision I had made and even considerations I thought would come up.

Yes, my piece was intended to engage the viewers and present them with a surreal, almost dreamlike landscape that was subtly manipulated in order for them to use multiple senses such as sight, scent, sound, and touch to appreciate and think about our intimacy with our environments.

I arranged the flowers as I immersed myself in the piece by John Cage, In A Landscape. I arranged them specifically to how the song flowed and in rows to follow sheet music. I also referenced the flowers as specimens on a white board and in rows where they laid flat. I didn't want it to be too medical and it was exactly perceived as being more of a dreamlike landscape with a solemn beauty instead of science-y, so I am pleased. 

I also thought about the fact that I presented them on a board that was almost human-size and coffin-esque and there were comments on that too, which I'm happy came up, however, I'd like to examine the meanings of this more because I was also wondering what these implications could mean. The fact that the group appreciate this strangely crafted landscape and thought it was calming and beautiful to listen to the music, smell the piece, and stare all around and notice patterns in my arrangement were exactly what I intended. 

As one can read, this project took many iterations and I found myself overthinking and becoming obsessed with it. I went mad, to put it lightly, and the concept went from collaboration to the most isolated work, to back to having multiple layers of dialogue and collaboration with other aspects and not literally the artist working with someone else, was such a great process. I learned about my ways of working and I was challenged greatly to think about other ways of collaboration. I did something knew which was allow myself to step back and allow other mediums to come together. Realizing that I needed to simplify and truly think through my concept instead of freaking out and thinking of a thousand different options allowed this piece to get to its truest sensibilities. I was worried that this piece didn't have enough of an artist's voice, but when I finally decided  on the idea of working with music and all of the arrangement and presentation decisions, it had a strong genuine nature that I wanted all along.

I will consider the suggestions I was given to think about the height of the platform and to create my own soundtrack to the experience.

This piece was very in-depth and truly brought me to the art of the project and process. I'm glad I learned where to simplify and how to add sincerity and voice to a concept. I learned so much and was very pleased with the critique. This project was had challenging but valuable process.

Project Process Documentation 3 and Reflection

Further discussion continued and my growing interest in film was brought up as a possible influence for this and future work. Using professional / Amateur film as the subject for a work became a more interesting possibility.

Erin also introduced me to youhole. A website that uses an algorithm to find and play low view count videos from websites like youtube. After seeing this website I thought it would be a perfect device to let me see randomized amateur videos, this way I would have no idea what I would be working with.

Website link:

The project developed into me creating a painting where I drew from the subject matter of passing videos. Using this method I had no idea what the finished piece would look like.

To add another constraint I decided that I would work and watch the passing videos for 5hours strait, painting the elements that left an influence on me for each video.

For presentation I decided the canvas must match a 16:9 aspect ratio to reflect the film influences that made up the image. This would be presented next to a matching projection of the videos so the viewer could have context for the piece.

The progress of the painting was also filmed as a way to document the experience.

Below are photos of the station I setup, video samples and the final presentation.


When reflecting on this project I am glad that the work progressed in the way that it did. By using film and painting in such a randomized way, I was able to work in a completely new way that was outside myself. This image being the first where I had no preplanning or sketches was a great change of practice. Allowing me to work more gestural and spontaneously than before. Elements from this project have already worked their way into my current work. 

The five hours of painting were exhausting when I think about it. Mixing and applying colors with brushes, pallet knives and tubes as fast as I could made me rely on instinctual decisions rather than planned ones. Although I intentionally shaped the composition of the piece towards the end the spirit of the work was consistent throughout. 

Looking back conceptually, the piece says interesting things about information retention and attention spans when viewing online videos. The continuously playing videos remind me of the time that can be spent on the almost endless recordings and videos now archived online. Videos of Minecraft alongside the reveal of a national monument, leveling the importance of information or elevating the more mundane. Almost creating a sea of information where anything can rise to the top regardless of the content. 

When painting scenes from the videos I chose visual elements and colors almost instinctively. Even I do not know why I was drawn to or retained specific elements found in each video. Even now I can barley remember most of the videos I watched. I can only remember by looking into the layers of the painting and finding the visual cues that can anchor me back to the video. 

Project Process Documentation 2

After group meetings with classmates and individual talks the project changed from the connection between surface and object, to my process with creating in general.
Focusing specifically on my preplanning / drawing of images for a final work.

I then decided on creating spontaneous drawings of random passages from the poems of Ezra Pound. This would be a way to create images without preplanning while also using a randomized source.

I chose the poems of Ezra Pound on account of him being one of Francis Bacons cited influences. A artist who's process I greatly admire.

When finished, I was unhappy with the assignments result since I saw them as illustrations. I also felt that the process of making them was unsuccessful for the direction I was trying to achieve. Everything still looked like how I imagined it. Without unexpected elements.

Project Process Documentation 1

Beginning this project I first thought about how I could create a relationship between a 2D surface and a 3D object, while still using the self imposed constraints.

I thought of doing two paintings and creating multiple small objects that would relate back to the images.

Here are my sketchbook pages that had my notes and the sketches I did as this process developed.