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My Sculpture Blog: The SPG

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Today I have another entry in my kinetic-art sculpture genre. This one combines the work I have been doing highlighting some of the traditional hardwoods that knife-makers use, with a decidedly more interactive object of my own.

There is a bit of a convergence going on in my work, with various threads beginning to overlap. And while my process has always been an incremental evolution, for a time I felt like I was pursuing different ends with my small kinetic works verses my larger stand alone sculpture. Elements from these small projects have begun creeping into everything I design, so there seems less and less point in differentiating between the various projects.

I am pretty sure this is a good thing, as the purpose for these small projects was always to widen the dialogue in my work and generate new ideas for sculpture. As long as I am moving forward and finding new creative ideas that fascinate me, life is good.

So with that said, let me introduce the “SPG”

Above we have works (going counter clockwise) with Amboyna Burl on Teal, Black Ash on Black, and Snakewood on Red. 

This work is an obvious next step from my Woody Worry-Stone project as it incorporates similar jewel like wooden inserts, but moves it firmly into the realm of kinetic art. There are more than a few knife making influences in this work, but the main inspiration comes from both my work on the MG series, and what are known as haptic coins

Both the MG series and haptic coins rely entirely on magnetic forces within the mechanism to hold the works together. This piece requires a much more robust construction and that technical requirement constrained the design in some interesting ways. I talk about this and a good bit more in the above video. 

This work has helped me think a bit more on this divide between my interactive and non interactive sculpture work. 

There is an interesting analogy that can be drawn between classical sculpture, which is traditionally to be viewed passively, and the contemporary art world which is often an interactive and participatory scene. 

That I have been bouncing between work that could be placed in each camp, passive and interactive, speaks to my desire to explore modern machine work in a holistic way. To frame machining as a fine art medium means doing so within a range of contexts. 

What started as an earnest traditional approach to fine art sculpture has branched out into an exploration of how we define craft, design, and even commercial manufacturing. I don’t know if that makes sense to anyone but me, but it is a theme that is leading me down some fascinating roads and I am doing my very best to describe my humble journey.

So as always, thoughts and comments welcome. 


Note for collectors: 

I’d love the chance to make a variety of combinations of this thing, so it goes without saying that an edition will be in the offering. Let’s set a date for a sign up sale. Say Tuesday September 15th at 11AM.

I will be offering a wide range of color choices for the aluminum anodizing, as well as a selection of hardwoods. The hardwoods will be limited by what I can source. Some woods are hard to get reliably and so supplies will be first come first serve. Signing up early is your best bet to get the pick you want. 

That said, the signup itself will be open for 3 days or so to give plenty of time to be thoughtful with your sign up and selection of colors and woods. 

The price for the work will be posted on the sign up as well. I know this bugs people but I try to keep commerce off publicly facing media.



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