“Conformity” was originally made to hang in the main
lobby of the Cook County Administration Building. This form looks
at one way that an individual, an individual’s form, is affected,
in its relationship to the mass shape and to its immediate neighbors,
by the attachment to a particular group.
Much of the process of my work walks towards, or looks for, truth…truth
of material…truth of form… truth of narrative. I believe
that the “abstraction” of “abstracting a narrative”,
which is what the work does, happens naturally as I articulate,
re-state, or more accurately, find in the sculptural material and
process of “crocheted fiberglass” a defined story based
on real life relationships.
“Conformity” started as six individual tubes crocheted
to be the same width and the same height with a slight variation
of stitch in each. They were joined together along the long sides
with five panels, again the same height and width. The body as a
whole has eleven parts. When sewn together “at the hip”,
they produced one large very precise rectangle. One part at a time
was put into resin and hardened before the next part was processed
the same way.
The fiberglass cloth that I crochet from continuous fiberglass
roving does not stretch when still dry. Immediately after the application
of polyester resin, the cloth becomes translucent and stretches
uncontrollably for about 30 minutes. It is in this stage that the
form is found. I apply the resin in small amounts so that I can
control what happens to the form. The language of this material/sculptural
process is a natural analogy for the narrative examined in “Conformity”.
The color in this work was applied after the form has hardened
and been sanded. The enamel is applied inside the tubes which then
is filtered or obscured by the translucent clear fiberglass; on
the back of the joining panels; and also on the front. The front
surface paint obliterates individuality and, in occasional bits,
paints it back in.
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