“Unseen” began as a reflection on the amount of artwork that is produced but never seen.
How many people actually “see” artwork? Most people that “see” artwork actually haven’t. They have seen pixels. Fewer people have actually seen my artwork in person than have experienced it in the form of curated photos posted via the internet on screens no bigger than their fists.
Going further—how much of my “work” have people really seen? Do they see each hour spend spilling specks of marble on the shop floor? Do they see the chisels sharpened or unique files made? Do they see the years of training that allowed me to attempt each piece in the first place?
Further—apply that to all products. We see the result, but not the process. How much labor went into the design and fabrication of even just the protective cases that surround our cell phones? Do we think about the loom that wove our clothing? or its operator?
The texture of the cloth in Unseen is based on my examination of the simplest of fabrics—flour sack dish clothes (my wife and I use a collection in our kitchen, hand stitched and embroidered by her grandmother, from actual flour sacks). The sculpture has the peaks and valleys of the fine warp and weft threads. However, only with focused, directional light they are revealed. This is true of nearly anything in life—it can been seen clearly if one views it in the proper light.
photography: Geoff T. Graham