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  #126  
Old 06-13-2010, 05:02 PM
grommet grommet is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

maybe I'm just not creative enough to surprise myself. but then again, i don't like surprises, i like anticipation.
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  #127  
Old 06-13-2010, 07:30 PM
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Ries Ries is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

You obviously have never gotten your hands on the right machines...

A machine is just a tool.
Any tool, once you learn how to use it, can be used creatively.
Your hands are tools. It took your brain a couple years to learn how to operate them properly.
The english language, photoshop, a camera, a hammer, a knife, a welder, a bulldozer, a file, a frying pan, and, yes, a hossfeld bender or a cnc mill are all just tools.
In the hands of an artist, any one of them can be far far beyond mere "duplication of task",

To dis a tool, any tool, is merely to dis your own brain- because no tool does anything without a human directing and controlling it.

There is a myth that things like CNC milling machines are somehow soulless automatons that just "duplicate".
Taint so. To properly get results from a cnc mill requires the same years of experience, the same learned relationship between brain, eye, and hand, that any sculpture does- and most people operating either a rosebud or a cnc mill are not artists. There are few, few artists with either, but they certainly exist.
I know artists with every tool ever made- including all sorts of machines.
Hand a book learned engineer a $350,000 Mazak horizontal turning center, and see how much "duplication" gets done before they have to call in the old machinist who can hear the wrong feeds and speeds, knows what brand of end mill works with which mill run of alloy, how to creatively tweak the machine, the cutting fluid, the tools and the setups to get the right result.

Me, I turned 55 this year, and I cannot do physically what I could 20 or 30 years ago, but I can do sensitive, completely unique signature work with quite a few machines. A hossfeld, for example, can do most of the bends you describe, with MORE control, MORE of the artists hand, and with much less effort, much less wear and tear on the old body, and most importantly, it fun to use.
Takes me two years to train an employee to do the basic stuff with a hossfeld- its far from a tool you can just walk up to and command it to "duplicate". I have been using mine since 78, and there is still plenty more to learn. Its an extension of my hands and brain, basically just a very sophisticated system of leverage.

I learned long ago the adage "work smarter, not harder" makes a whole lot of sense, and the older I get, the more sense it makes. Most of my buddies who used to just power thru everything with brute strength cant do much of anything these days- bodies wear out if you misuse em. With the hossfeld, you can order replacement parts. Elbows, backs, knees- not so easy or cheap.
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Last edited by Ries : 06-13-2010 at 08:33 PM.
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  #128  
Old 06-14-2010, 09:40 AM
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rderr.com rderr.com is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

A machine is just a tool.
Any tool, once you learn how to use it, can be used creatively.
Your hands are tools. It took your brain a couple years to learn how to operate them properly.
The english language, photoshop, a camera, a hammer, a knife, a welder, a bulldozer, a file, a frying pan, and, yes, a hossfeld bender or a cnc mill are all just tools.
In the hands of an artist, any one of them can be far far beyond mere "duplication of task",

Reis,

I love you--in the best since of the word. My favorite book is a catalog of hand tools, titled TOOLS-MAN'S DIALOGUE WITH MATERIALS. To that I would add, SCULPTURE-MAN'S DANCE WITH MATERIALS

Robert
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  #129  
Old 06-14-2010, 10:02 AM
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jOe~ jOe~ is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

Ries, you omitted one of the most important contributions of tools. All tools, huge tools, precise tools, extend the possibility and scope of error. Tools promote learning and creativity, more quickly.
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  #130  
Old 06-14-2010, 02:09 PM
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evaldart evaldart is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

So you have to carry the hossfeld bender up the 20 foot ladder along with the 1" x 6" x 5 foot long plate and somehow knot that plate around the desired section with it. Impossible. The bends I describe cannot be done with any machine, sorry (unless I wrap the machine into a knot on the sculpture too). And those happen to be the bends that "move" me. Every one of us has shockingly unusual methods and abilities when it comes to the creative process. Things we've quite invented. I cant do what you can do and you cant do what I can do...its that simple.

I'm not what I was physically ten years ago either. But the important thing is to rise to your thresholds, whatever they might be (the pain is always the same...its how you know your in the right place).
Gear is good, I have lots and lots of it - and I dont doubt that there are amazing things that can get accomplished with gear...in the hands of a properly motivated INDIVIDUAL. A properly motivated artist is after "sensations" that challenge both reality and consciousness (fantasy?). Much of the stuff that has been called art throughout history was motivated not at all by any such sensations...so all that was lesser. The fab shops arent making Art, they are following chains of direction, and specs. Closer to architecture. Everyone must draw a line somewhere...it ALL cant be of maximum significance - lest it ALL just be of minimum significance.
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  #131  
Old 06-14-2010, 02:55 PM
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rderr.com rderr.com is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

A good what ever never accuses, abuses, or praises tools or technique. Art is the results of the harmonious use of all of the above.

Robert 1Derr
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  #132  
Old 06-14-2010, 03:09 PM
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jOe~ jOe~ is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

Quote:
Every one of us has shockingly unusual methods and abilities when it comes to the creative process.
What else is there to say, except be alert!
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  #133  
Old 06-14-2010, 04:29 PM
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GlennT GlennT is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

Quote:
Originally Posted by grommet View Post
harmony is so limiting
1. Examples of when you have been limited by harmony?

2. Results of having transcended the "limits" of harmony...what was gained?
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  #134  
Old 06-14-2010, 04:58 PM
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rderr.com rderr.com is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

Quote:
Originally Posted by grommet View Post
harmony is so limiting
hubris makes good theater
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  #135  
Old 06-14-2010, 05:14 PM
grommet grommet is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

Quote:
Originally Posted by rderr.com View Post
hubris makes good theater
you're mistaking a sincere opinion for hubris.
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  #136  
Old 06-14-2010, 06:05 PM
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rderr.com rderr.com is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

No, just being flippant. Something I would never accuse you of.

RD

Last edited by rderr.com : 06-15-2010 at 08:07 AM.
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  #137  
Old 06-14-2010, 06:10 PM
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Ries Ries is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

Someone please define "harmony" as it applies to sculpture.

I understand what four part harmony is, in barber shop quartets- and it is definitely pretty limiting, as compared to Ornette Coleman or Miles Davis.

But in sculpture?
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  #138  
Old 06-14-2010, 07:00 PM
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jOe~ jOe~ is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

Quote:
Someone please define "harmony" as it applies to sculpture.
Its a zen koan.

Quote:
... just being flippant. Something I would never accuse you of.
That was flippant.

Quote:
you're mistaking a sincere opinion for hubris.
That was flippant too. This is creating quite a flap if you ask me.

Last edited by jOe~ : 06-15-2010 at 09:24 AM.
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  #139  
Old 12-08-2010, 01:23 PM
DonnyBaby DonnyBaby is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

I think back very fondly to the years I worked as Louise's assistant from 1979-1981. She was teaching a class at The Cooper Union and during our time together she became impressed with my energy and drive and asked me to come work with her. Needless to say, I jumped at the chance. I worked with her on a daily basis constructing armatures for her work, making molds, helping with exhibitions and doing hundreds of "chores" around her eccentric Chelsea brownstone.

It wasn't all business by any means, I never knew what to expect from day to day. Sometimes we would go to an exhibit or out to lunch for the whole afternoon and we'd take frequent trips to her new studio in Brooklyn which was just being set up.

Louise loved to verbally spar with anyone who had the nerve to engage her. She had a way of "huffing" with disgust, which was usually enough to reduce anyone to uncomfortable uncertainty.

(to be continued...)
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  #140  
Old 12-10-2010, 12:14 PM
rika rika is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

You piqued my interest, can't wait for more.
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  #141  
Old 12-11-2010, 06:01 PM
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suburbanartists suburbanartists is offline
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Re: Louise Bourgeois, RIP

Just saw some of her stuff from the 1940's at Moma. i'm 45, my Dad was just born when she did that work. What incredible staying power that lady had.
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