I created this piece around the door or hatch, which I found in a miasmic, industrial hell-hole in Baltimore that was, obviously, at one time, a lovely wetland. I decided to use the hatch as a portal; however, at first, I did not know to what place it would lead. I intended to make a lovely and intricate structure out of wood and old metal machine parts, possibly burning some of the wood elements. After burning the first few pieces I realized that this portal was a passage to a dream state. My dream state at the time of its construction was pretty damn dark due the the Gulf Oil Spill.
So here you have it – a realistic ‘Dream Machine’– foreboding, burnt to shit and blackened, like too many of the realities that feed our thoughts and dreams these days. What is inside may be beautiful, or it may not be, but what you see is what you get – the fodder of modern dreams; oil-covered waters and trash-strewn beaches; paved-over wetlands; forests that had no choice but to give way to the ‘wonders of progress’; stars we can no longer see because darkness is too unknown to be left alone.
DREAM MACHINE was created for a group show I was in for which I was asked to create something somewhat out of step with what I usually create. My initial intention was to make a ‘found object’ sculpture – the irony being that I usually construct all aspects of my pieces. This ‘Dream Machine’ is what evolved. What is the most different about this piece is its intention. Primarily, my work is intricate and considered somewhat beautiful. I am in love with the beauty in this world and seek it out daily. Normally my artwork reflects, in some way, the struggles between nature and modernity, but I fear that the 'struggle' part of my message is often so subtle as to be all but hidden behind the craft and beauty. This piece does not hide that message – it embodies it and puts it out front.
This sculpture is made of a found object (the metal hatch), burnt pine, and a shit-load of anger. The process of constructing it was not really all that different from my typical creation process. Every piece I make is approached with the same mind-set – I just make it, whether I know how to or not.