One of the key aspects about all of my work is that in my mind at least, a piece of work should keep evolving.
while creating most people accept that part of the creative process is changing something from one thing to another e.g turning a blank canvas in to a painting or turning left over scraps of metal in to a sculpture….
My question is why does this process have to stop? it doesn’t in nature.
Within my work i like to work with materials which can, will and do continue to change over time. Within a lot of my paintings i use bitumen which continues to corrode and eat paint long after work has stopped on the image, I also use many types of atomised metals which will react with elements in the air over time and change within the image. For example I may add copper to a painting, now with copper it changes and reacts when it comes in to contact with air but if you want to push the change add some ammonia and salt and the copper will fully verdigre (react and turn green). If on the other hand you don’t want these reactions to happen use a varnish or a resin to seal the metal away from the elements which cause reactions.
one of my main influences for this kind of process is a artist called Dieter Roth. Within his work the pieces which i find most interesting are the work made of foodstuffs.
Dieter Roth is a swiss artist who lived in Germany and is best known for his published notebooks of graphic style images though his interest in the process of decay is fascinating. within this blog i have attached a few photos of examples of his work.
Top – (Roth.D, 1968, Insel(Island), MoMA Retrospective)
Below – (Roth.D, 1969, Chocolate-bar picture, MoMA Retrospective)
Dieter Roth was predominantly known for his graphic style sketch books which admittedly are phenomenal in their own right it is stories like the one i am about to share that inspire me most, you could say controversy is and amusing drive to create.
“Roth produced arguably his most spectacular group of works, 120 variations on ‘Kleine Insel’. He had already explored the idea of small-format landscape representation made out of kitchen scraps as a prototype for the collector Sohm. He returned to the idea when commissioned to create a series for the renowned Basel advertising agency GGK, where he had previously applied for work. It was agreed that he would receive 2000 swiss francs a month to create a work for each of the firms 120 employees as a Christmas gift. The client envisioned small pictures or drawings and was instead confronted with works whose substance was, to put it mildly, problematic: to a panel painted blue, Roth attached various edibles with nails, screws, and wire arranging his materials like islands in an ocean. To finish, he would drown the composition in sour milk or yoghurt and pour liquid plaster on top as a fixative. The objects were then displayed without protection, allowing the decay intended by Roth to take its inevitable course. This meant a sequence of mouldy stages, bacterial decay, and intense insect attack, until, finally, only inorganic or nondegradeable constituents remained. The ‘Kleinen Inseln’ thus became microcosms, ‘pars pro toto’ embodiments of the fate of all living things.”
(Dobke.D, Walter.B, 2004, Roth Time- A Dieter Roth Retrospectave, New York, Museum of Modern Art, Lars Muller Publishers, P.106)