BFA Terminal Project
WHO AM I?
I am a Bachelor of Fine Arts student in the Sculpture department at the University of Oregon. Now in my final year of undergraduate school, I am beginning work on my final terminal project which is the culmination of my BFA year. If art school has taught me anything so far, it is that doing something difficult well often means spending the money to do it right. My ambitious projects for my terminal show are going to exceed my personal budget, thus the reason for the Kickstarter. I work mostly with steel, although materials are often chosen specifically for each project and so can change between individual works. I like to fabricate from bare materials such as steel and wood and use few found objects outside of mechanical parts, which makes my practice very process heavy and expensive. In addition, I make kinetic sculpture that sometimes involves motors and pumps, requiring specific equipment that is not often found cheap.
All donations will go towards materials, execution, promotion, and documentation of the work and terminal show. Funds in excess of necessary expenditures will be used to build a professional portfolio for applications to graduate programs (and I plan on applying to many). Pictures and video here are of previous pieces and material studies of mine in the direction of my interests, which are…
The many roles systems play in our daily lives has become a web of connections that continues to grow at an exponential rate. Many of them go unnoticed in our daily lives because of our desensitization or because we do not recognize them as systems which are affecting upon us. Conceptual systems in the realm of communication (language, art) and organization (government, religion) are abundant and constantly in exchanges with each other. These complex relationships create the foundations of society and culture and have been evolving as long as the human brain has. I view the human experience as being heavily under the influence of complex systems. Our lives begin without knowledge of these systems and our life-long education programs our brain to understand and engage with them. In this way, we become a product of our environment, wired by our experiences to have certain inclinations, needs, habits, quirks, etc. This building of personal history creates our perspective of the world and everything that affects us. The way that the brain catalogs, stores, and recalls this history makes perspective unique. We, as individuals, become systems within ourselves, distinctive by what we call personality which is formed through our continuing perspective, constantly evolving as the brain records experiences and information.
Mathematics has become the universal process system. Nearly a language all its own, it is used in nearly all other systems and is the basis of some of the most complex and broad such as science and world currency. Starting at 1+1=2, the base-10 system has grown and evolved as a way to understand our natural environment and the rules which govern it. Using the same system, humans have built much of our culture and society based on standardized numerics and equations.
We have created systems of thought which attempt to make sense of individual perspective, however none are universally accepted as truth. Psychologists, philosophers, and therapists have worked feverishly for millennia to provide answers to the intangible irrationals of the human mind and have yet to come up with even the simplest explanations that aren’t somewhat contested. However, 1+1 is quite undeniably 2, and mathematics took off from there. It shunned perspective in an attempt to rationalize and simplify into quantities.
Organic kinetic forms - Inspired by the history of the machine as a replacement for the human body and using a system for translation, intangible systems are given a physical manifestation. Using a personally created system to reduce perspective of a system into a series of spacial relationships, I work with numbers and ratios in conjunction with my conceptual intent to recreate naturally-occurring complexity referencing the abstracted body. Many artists utilize personally built rulesets in their practice. This process of self-limitation is not unlike the creation of a machine to perform a physical task. In this way, rulesets act as replacements for the brain, pre-directing the work by instituting guidelines before creation. My system is directing but less constricting than rules are, as they allow me to manipulate how the numbers are translated into formal elements and motion.
Structural systems - Systems with agendas are used as frameworks in the pursuit of an objective. They prop up an ideal meant to withstand contesting, often built with a hierarchy of logic and priorities that mimic the foundations and structures of architectural engineering. Influenced by architecture and its steadfast defiance of gravity, I look at systems that support an ideology in defiance of competing systems.