Judy made the comment that before my work was conforming to the house itself, but now it’s breaking out. It’s more elusive. There’s violence in the work because of the shattered overlay. Tearing is one kind of violence. Burning is another violence. The violence would be intensified if it were sized up.
Judy first addressed my fire series combined with transparencies. She said there is a collision with the sandwiching of the transparencies, a collision of forms where moments are colliding. This combining is more enigmatic. There are very interesting vibrations in the synthesis. It’s more about memory, fire, and the life force. The plexi-glass acts as a mediator, like a window through which you can look back at something.
Judy commented that a narrative is always about time, an occurrence, and an event. She said my fire series reads very well left to right. There is a certain velocity that leads the viewer to the right. The only image with an active left edge is the first one. All the others have active right edges that lead the viewer on. The color flow also has a momentum. The color begins quite active until there is a blunt stop at the forth image, with its strong horizontals, and then the color dies out.
Judy said I need to unify the language within these pieces. The plexi-glass is very slick, while the fire images are very rough. Also the bases are quite pristine in comparison with the demise of the other. And the binder clips I used at the top of the plexi-glass are very distracting – perhaps I should use clear plexi screws instead. Judy liked the distance between the transparencies and the fire images because it made the imagery change as the viewer moved. But she suggested backing the fire imagery with foam-board or aluminum to make it more rigid and fixed. She said I should try two things: 1) to make the transparencies large enough to contain the entire fire image, perhaps framed and contained within an actual window, 2) embrace the yin and the yang of the disparateness of the imagery and push it further, and cut away more from the fire imagery that protrudes beyond the plexi, making the edges more active, and allowing interesting shadows to be cast upon the wall.
Judy also talked quite a bit about my plaster house/ image combinations. She liked how they referenced “house” without trying to be “house”. She said where Beverly Buchannan’s work wants to be observed by the viewer, my work looks like it wants to consume the viewer. She said she could envision them really large. She said if the plaster in the houses were dark, as opposed to being ghostly white, they would look more like burnt houses. She said I should make them look more like I feel them to be, visually phenomenological. She said I need to think about what I want the viewer to feel when they’re in the space. She said I should consider how I feel when I am looking at Anselm Kiefer’s work.
Judy talked quite a bit about various materials with which I could construct my shattered “house”, and things I could mix into the plaster or acrylic to add texture and color and add depth of meaning. She said I must take the cracking and breaking further, and make it my own. She said to play around with various methods to see what I liked best.
We talked about these pieces for over three hours, so I never brought out my latest pinhole images. I think I will wait until I print a select few of my sculpture photos and print them large. We discussed the work that I had questions about, so I feel good about moving forward.