plastic straws, wooden frame
80 x 46 x 9 in.
Things always take more time than I anticipate. I jump into the deep end without contemplating how long I will be treading water. This delusion makes it possible for me to start projects that require a lot of time and detail. People want to know how long works have taken to produce, but what does this measure? My love? My devotion? My insanity? I never count the hours. I follow blindly the prescription I have written for myself through my initial decisions. The obsessive nature of this process is essential. It gives me the illusion that I don't have to make any choices and not having to make choices is enormously relieving. These three sculptures (Lines, Shapes, Patterns) represent an exploration of material, process, and pattern. They are made primarily from plastic drinking straws. The abundance and accessibility of straws were initially attractive to me, as well as how common, yet disregarded they are in everyday life. The project evolved from this initial curiosity as well as an interest in the aesthetic potential they possess. The straws were cut in half and then stacked in the frame. There is no glue or adhesive holding the pieces together; they simply rest on top of one another. As the frame is filled, the weight of the thousands of individual straws gives the pieces more stability, but they are still very fragile. The technique is a reflection of older forms of art making. I like to think of it as pointillist sculpture, as it is made up of many small parts that make a cohesive image together and it exhibits a similar tension of being perceived very differently up close and at a distance. It is also undeniably influenced by craft traditions such as quilting, which uses pattern and brings together different pieces to make a larger pattern, and weaving, which starts from one end and creates a pattern in a linear progression from one end to the other. There is also a connection in the obsessive quality of the work and the time required.
Ducey, Caitlyn, “Pattern,” Lewis & Clark Senior Art, accessed April 21, 2014, https://library.lclark.edu/seniorprojects/items/show/3601.