Wastelanders

2002, Sculpture/installation
Wastelanders, VOXX Gallery, Chemnitz, Germany. Curated by Till Exit.

For my first solo exhibition I was invited by artist Till Exit to spend a few weeks in Chemnitz collecting materials from abandoned and derelict factories, to use in the production of a temporary installation. I gathered masking tape, burned-out fireworks, surgical gloves, museum plinths (found in a skip) motors, and items from the gallery store.

A group of figures emerged. Some had moving parts, others were static. A sound piece was comprised of a branch attached to a motor, tapping from side to side inside a hollow wooden plinth, forming a strange clock. As the tip of the branch scraped against the inside of the plinth, a surprisingly resonant, mournful sound emerged, not dissimilar to a heavy chair being dragged across a wooden floor. A second kinetic/sonic sculpture was made from a plastic bow with a light bulb attached to one end, rotating just above the floor. As the bow rotated, the bulb occasionally scraped against the floor, making a shrill sound of glass against stone.

At the opening event an audience member mentioned that, for him the exhibition had an atmosphere of T.S Eliot's poem, 'The Wasteland'. Having used materials found in derelict sites, this comparison was quite accurate. I hope that some humour creeps through the cartoon simplicity of each work, and a lightness of touch in the way that the works appeared to drunkenly occupy the gallery space (a former distillery) being placed leaning against walls, or lying on the ground.

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