He woke each morning before the sun, slipped on his blue jeans, and went to work where he labored tirelessly, without complaint. He did this for his God, and next his family. His existence drenched in pain and sweat. His work was noble, and came from an honest belief that his Lord had called him to suffer so that he would be greatly rewarded in the afterlife. He didn't smoke, or drink. He read the Bible, and was kind. It grew from his throat. His secret had no choice but to revealed itself. He looked in the mirror and knew he would die, and be in heaven soon, then he went to work.
STEEL DRAWING MAN, 2013
Steel Drawing Man is based on the American tall-tale of the former slave JohnHenry, where he challenges a machine to lay a mile of railroad track. The tale serves as an allegorical reference to the struggle between human and machine. This video installation challenges the concepts of the modern technological struggle while highlighting an artist relationship with their work and the nature of what it means to be a "working" artist.
In "Steel Drawing Man" I race against an ink-jet printer to draw a miles worth of track (represented by a crudely drawn spike, though in the original tale JohnHenry challenged the machine to chip through rock). The six hour "race" is shown, in it's entirety, in twelve thirty minute loops. Each loop plays simultaneously as does each sections sound. The end resulting in a disconnected sense of space and time. Within each frame is a glimpse into the artist plight as he struggles to best the machine.
Steel Drawing Man
Faith Suspended, Holy Bible, Ice 2x8x12
For many people faith is the corner stone of their existence. They attend church, mosque, or temple regularly. They are quick to share their beliefs with anyone who will listen hoping that those without salvation will someday find it. However, for most people, religion acts as a rip cord at the end of their life. As death is upon us, we cry out to a higher power, pleading to be granted access into the afterlife. We remove years of religious burden and guilt just in time to ascend into heaven. "Faith Suspended" attempts to highlight this ice box form of faith, asking the question, "What role does faith play in our lives?"
Surrogates was a group show curated by Gary Sherman at the SVA Chelsea Galleries.
Featured artists: John Patrick Wells, Adebunmi Gbadebo, Devin Tamiazzo, Amy De Stefano