Anastylosis

License:

Creative Commons License
Share

Anastylosis is an archeological term defined as: the archeological reassembly of ruined monuments from fallen or decayed fragments, incorporating new materials when necessary. This is very close to a description of how I see my work, except that I often do this process in reverse. I take monuments or symbols and break them down into fragments, incorporate some new material and put them back together as objects that confront issues I feel are critical to contemporary society.

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

22x60 inches, screen print on paper

Like an archeologist these works are carefully researched with elements excavated from disparate places in geography, time and memory, then reinterpreted and reassembled as carefully created objects that carry an underlying sense of decay. I very much believe in the necessity of art as a way to understand the world and like Ernst Ficher that “art in a decaying society, if it is truthful, must also reflect decay.”

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

For this series I have taken apart Americans flags string by string, completely disassembling them and then reassembling them into two separate flags made only of vertical and horizontal strings respectively. The end of each string is threaded through a needle and then placed over prints of polarizing imagery and presented as a diptych. I feel that the extreme polarization we are currently experiencing: socially, economically, and politically is literally rending the fabric of America, so this work is a physical representation of the state of the Union. For me these vertical and horizontal strings once separated become paradigms for viewing the world, that now polarized as opposites can never fully integrate.

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

In addition to the physical flags I have abstracted the string shapes into grids that have been screen printed over polarizing imagery as a print series. This felt very natural to the work as some of the imagery started off as posters, which were appropriated and re-imagined through the grid of these opposing world views.

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

44x30 inches, mono print screen print on paper

32x48x3 inches, deconstructed American Flag, needles, mono print

44x30 inches, mono print screen print on paper

44x30 inches, mono print screen print on paper

One Response to Anastylosis

  1. Pat MacAvoy says:

    Incidentally, October 5th is the anniversary of the death of former Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis (1856-1941), who was the first Jewish member of the United States Supreme Court. He once said, “America has believed that in differentiation, not in uniformity, lies the path to progress. It acted on this belief; it has advanced human happiness, and it has prospered.” For what it’s worth, his voice dates back multiple American generations.

    Your thoughts/reflections?