Lecture 008

Rachel Whiteread

Born: 1963 Gender: woman Work: sculpture from casting (mold)

Rachel Harrison


Personality: don't like photos being taken


Grosse Fatigue

3D Cook Book

Computer Aided Drawing on Wall





I personally have been in my room all day for a month. I went out for a bike yesterday morning, and I found myself perplexed by the droplets of water from the roofs. This phenomenon seems odd for me because I have not seen water droplets for nearly a month. This nonsensical experience made me wonder what "collection" really means. Therefore, it makes me conclude that a collection is meaningful when it is unusual at the time for the viewer to see. That may include your personal item after you have lost it, a fictional item, a rare item, archaeological items such as bones and historical relics... Since the meaning of these archives depends on the time when the viewer chooses to take a look at them, objects that freeze in time count towards a collection too: including "Oliver Croy and Oliver Elser's collection of houses by the Austrian" and the "3D Additivist Cookbook". The collection of objects can also be meaningful as a way of storytelling. In terms of Adrian Villar Rajas's "the Theater of Disappearance". The artist uses a collection of objects to tell the fictional history when humans suddenly disappear. Fred Wilson uses his collection to explore black culture and history using artificial and found objects.

I always believe that good artwork should communicate the idea without an extensive explanation of it. That is, it should be that the artwork communicates the idea or message, not the artist's statement. Ilana Harris-Babou, the artist in the presentation, did a good job to communicate ideas solely in the artworks themselves. I like the way she uses video as a medium of showcasing the objects. The video restricts the audience's angle and sequence of viewing an object as well as adds narration to the objects. This restriction and modification make the work more understandable and meaningful. With the narration, the artist adds a layer of storytelling to the original objects. The food in her "Cooking with Erratics" series can show not only the finished product, but also the process of making them. With video, there are also interactions between the artwork and the audience: in her un-finishing basement series, she directly talks to the audience in the video, making the artwork more engaging.

Is there a way to combine collection and archiving with story telling? That will be my next step to explore.

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