I am interested in the transformation and re-invention of a diverse range of forms that interest me; most often they come from the worlds of applied arts (clothing structures, furniture, utilitarian objects and vernacular industrial architecture). The structure of clothing forms has continuously informed my work, serving as a vehicle for exploring their functional and sociological roles and the influence of the design and architecture of various cultures and periods in history.
All of my sculptures begin with specific references. The form, developed and transformed through extensively revised drawings, may be initially informed by a child’s bib, but at the same time, influenced by an Art Deco architectural detail, resulting in a variety of readings. This hybrid, distilled form is finally directed by my means of construction and choice of materials. The result is an abstracted version, but often retaining a suggestion or essence of the initial source.
My interest in clothing and the body probably goes back to my early formal art training in figure painting. Clothing structures now allow me to examine the inferred body. Architecture has also had a strong influence on my work. When looking at architecture, I isolate a section of a building (a chimney, a window, a roof shape) that interests me. In the same way, I concentrate on a particular section or detail of clothing (a turn of a collar – the shape of a sleeve). I’m interested in the seamless shifting from body to architectural form – in the melding of the wearable with the structurally un-wearable.
My wide selection of materials (wood, perforated metal, linoleum, fabrics) reflects my interest in the coexistence of the industrial/architectonic and domestic worlds. My means for assembling elements (stitching, wrapping, interlocking, riveting) allows for the process to become visually apparent and an integral part of the form and structure. Details of ornamentation are direct results of the structure and reflect the inherent properties of the material used in each individual sculpture.
LUI SHTINI and DIANE SIMPSON
28 April - 20 June, 2015