For current posts, scroll down past artist's statement.

The Muse's Storage Box

The Muse's Storage Box
Copyright Diane Lou.

Alchemical Dreams and Disparate Realities

Rust and bones, broken toys and old text, game boards, gears and nests. Even as a child such odd, unwanted items evoked a pit-of-the-stomach response that bordered on exhilaration.
While I make no attempt to conjure up specific feelings in the viewer, the ambiguous juxtapositioning of familiar materials creates art that evokes half-forgotten, dream-like visions that beg to be interpreted by the viewer. There is a sense of deja vu (the already seen) tempered by a sense of jamais vu ( the never seen, or the illusion that the familiar does not seem familiar), and this contradiction asks the viewer to dig deeply, to look inside her own repository of wisdom, intuition and experience to find her own meaning in the familiar objects she sees.
The once-private discards of people's material lives that I collect for my art seem to carry universal memories with them, memories that can engage and mystify the viewer. Their beauty lies within the rust, the erosion, the wear, and the mere fact that they were once possessions.
I play with abandon and with no forethought. Each piece of detritus seems to suggest to me a relationship with some other piece, and I begin to put them together and wait for the mental "buzz" that lets me know I am proceeding as I should. Even at this point, I continue to remain in the play state and will not allow myself to direct the outcome of the piece, a process that requires complete trust. The outcome often mystifies me as much as it might any viewer.
Remember when, as a child, whatever was in reach became the instrument of your creative exploration? That is my life. A rusty, flattened piece of metal on the street, a gnawed bone by the roadside, a unique twisted branch from a tree, a fallen nest, a broken egg, a snake's skin, a dead butterfly...all will be added to my collection and eventually have their beauty honored in one of my pieces. The resulting art creates a new story with its own imagined history, one that invites the viewers to lay some claim on it by allowing themselves to be enveloped by the sight, the history, and the ambiguity of the realities before them.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

New starts...and a finish

On November 8th, I posted about the initial stage of this piece and wanted to update you on that with the picture below.  At this stage, again, I have no idea where it is going beyond where it is.  So far, we have a cigar box, lego pieces (the black and gold), a clock part and a checkerboard.

Another start below fashioned on an old sleeve-pressing board, on which I fastened a set of antlers (both bins finds). No, those aren't eyes, just the two screws holding the antlers on...and no, this isn't a holiday piece :)!
And now for a finish.  If you look across the top of the piece, that gridwork section is those little lanterns I disassembled.  Really like them!  Inside, the scraggly, rusty bit is a burnt out drain pan from a charcoal grill (bins again).  Couldn't resist its patina and wabi-sabi appeal.  Still waiting for the title for this one to pop into my head.  Any suggestions?
Hard to believe we are flying towards Thanksgiving and Xmas and the end of the year already. Possible snow this week down to 1000'.  We are 700' so we might get a skiff.  

No comments: