Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Opening Another Toolchest/Earning Amnesty

Sometime ago, I made some tools from chopped coins.
Recently, while browsing the web, I came across a page where I'd been featured. I could vaguely remember getting an e-mail months back from someone asking me if it would be okay to use my images, but I'd never actually seen the article.
When I clicked it I couldn't believe my eyes. Another artist had made some work strikingly similar to my own.
Was I intimidated? Did I feel threatened? No. Our approaches are completely different. If anything, I was impressed.
It's good to be part of a large, broad movement, whose existence in America is only possible within this particular era. Her name is Stacey Lee Webber, she's a jewelry maker by trade, and she even went so far as to obtain a document from the US Mint assuring her she could mess with money.
So there you have it: discouraged , but not penalized.
So I guess that throws a wrench into my plan to get arrested for chopping up coins and finally get the media to cover my art. That's how I'd planned to get famous.
I suppose it's back to the drawing board.
No, the "Adjustable Wrench" sculpture is not adjustable.
It's just art. And it's totally Legal.
Yes: one side is Heads and the other is Tails.
I'm not sure if I'll make more tools from coins, but I wouldn't be surprised if somebody else does.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Can It! (Slogan Parade)

Here's the latest thing I've been able to finish.
Coke is it.
I used to drink this stuff when I was a kid.
Red, White and You.
I guess now instead of citric acid they use phosphoric acid.
Enjoy Coke.
My favorite part is the bottom of the can.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Dawn of a New Direction/sticking it to the world

Looking out the window of my new studio in Brooklyn.
After 2 full years of chopping up coins to make artwork, I've amassed a worthless fortune in stockpiled scraps. Although technically money, this kind of thing is definitely not something that can be spent. What good is a nickel if it's only a speck? How many pieces of a penny does it take to buy a loaf of bread?
So I've decided to distribute the value into another project, in order that thousands of coin particles can merge together and form a priceless art object.
My approach thus shifts, as I begin to stick precut pieces to actual objects. It doesn't get any less toxic than this: Elmers Glue is my initial adhesive.
By building up rows of slivers, I've been able to create an ocean that resembles skewed stacks of nickels.
The land is made from pennies, fit together like a wall of stones.
Mountains are formed by sideways slivers of dimes and Quarters.
Inland bodies of water are denoted by tiny coin punchouts.
When ocean meets land, subtle interplay occurs.
I have been following the actual currents of the world when laying out these waves.
Using the globe as a template, I will continue until I've covered the entire planet.
To be Continued...

Monday, November 29, 2010

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Art Anniversary/Bookending a Body of Work

2 years ago this month, I began experimenting with a new type of art involving cutting coins into pieces and using those scraps to build larger images. The first was political, and I made it during the build-up to the presidential election of 2008.
A few weeks later, I began work on mosaic, 36"x24", with which I wanted to document the shared human predicament of being defined by money from conception.
This piece was always meant to be the first of two similar mosaics, but I became overwhelmed with other project ideas and had to put the second part aside for a spell.
Now, at long last, I've returned to the project and I'm thrilled to say it's nearly completed.
The results could not be more pleasing.
I think I've definitely refined my technique, and have gotten much faster as well.
When I put the silicone onto this mosaic, a few unexpected chemical reactions took place.
Some really crazy cool colors appeared as the curing adhesive reacted with the many money metal alloys.
I had planned to go in later with a patina, but the Universe beat me to it.
Wildest is this brilliant magenta.
So how much money did I use?
Enough to eat for a week, on the right budget.
But not enough to pay a Wireless bill.
Anyway, it's only money.
They'll make more.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

works in progress

Although this blog has enjoyed a summer vacation, my artwork has not.
I've been working away on a mosaic to accompany another piece I made at the beginning of 2009, which was an embryo made from chopped money.
Both will be going to Wisconsin with me this October for a solo show at the regional arts center in my hometown.
Also, I'm working on a few other things....
...to be continued...

Monday, August 2, 2010

Spiraling into Control/Homage to Gastropods

When I decided to start making creatures from chopped coins, I did not take the task lightly. Nature is probably the most impressive thing on the planet, and if an artist is to emulate it adequately it takes a proper approach.
I polished my technique, spending hours and hours on a seemingly small object, and in the end I think I did justice to the subject, however, being fairly biased, who am I to say?
So I took the critique to the source, and tried to determine how my sculpture compared to the real thing.
Looks like a shell, but does it feel like a shell?
One out of two slugs agree, this artwork is worth experiencing.
Hopefully the gesture didn't go to it's head!
The last thing I wanted to do was cause a garden slug shell-shock!
In the end the two returned to their lives, leaving me to deal with the slime, which, incidentally, is not easy to remove.
Thanks to Jason Hamilton for being there to snap the pictures!