Ever since taking a Contemporary Art and Theory course at Agnes Scott College with Dr. Katherine Smith, I have been in awe and inspired by Claes Oldenburg. My professor’s current research involves Oldenburg, so he is a recurrent subject in all her courses. I love Oldenburg’s Store in New York and how he rendered sculptural replicas of everyday objects, and usually on a larger scale than the realistic size of these object (oversized dresses and hamburgers, for instance)… as if making a statement about contemporary art in the light of consumerism. His sculptural pieces were extremely tactile and finished of with colorful waxy drips. Perhaps this was an reference to Jackson Pollock, or perhaps he was appropriating the same cause of controversy, surrounding the standards of Museum-grade art, into his work. Anyways, this was what was going through my head when I saw the windows in my son’s room, later in the evening during the thunderstorm this past Saturday. I created this set of photographs for the purposes of creating a permanent document of an ephemeral moment. The windows were heavily frosted and still being splattered with pouring rain, with the street lights casting an illuminative glow through the frosted window. It reminded me of Oldenburg because I was thinking about how cool it would be to enlarge these photographs, larger than their realistic size, and force the viewer to walk around a giant light box, sided with these photographs. The idea being that the viewer would have to physically walk around and observe these windows, within this frozen yet fleeting moment of time, and observe an everyday subject, but a view normally taken for granted or overlooked.
I chose to render all (except one) of these photographs in black and white, slightly alluding to the history of photography. I wanted to appropriate Oldenburg and Pollock in a playful way; and create an image only nature could duplicate and even then, the image would not be rendered the exact same. I love how Pollock’s paintings are so gestural, with each stroke a reaction to the flick of the wrist… compositions that cannot be forged. I wish I could have tucked photographic cigarettes away and in the midst of these compositions, as many of Pollock’s works include. But alas, that would be implausible truth PhotoShopped into these photographs. In any case, I love the nostalgia and the romantic feel to black and white photography and wish to express, and hold tight to, these natural spectacles and residuals of thunderstorms. I find the patterns of the drips to be mesmerizing and I tried to edit these photographs in a way that would be reminiscent of my reality, yet reflective of a past, art historical moment of modernity.
I hope you get an intense feel for the wetness within this physical document of a storm’s miraculousness. Please feel free to leave any and all comments or feedback… I am an art historian with an amateur eye for photography and could use some good mentors and constructive critiques.
PEACE, LOVE until my next bloggy-blog post, my fellow blogging friends.