I write about stuff, and art is no exception. That’s just the way I am.
Mostly, I write about things I wonder about, that I’d like to know more intimately, to understand, or to be better at doing. I write to work things out: to clarify them, simplify them, extend them, and make them more useful in practical or imaginary living. When it works well in this way, writing creates possibilities that don’t exist for me when I begin. It shows me what I need to know, what difference it would make if I knew it, where to look, who to ask, and what to do with the answers.
Necessarily, given these bounds, I write about myself, of my own experience, though as a storyteller I manage to include a lot from other people.
Sometimes, I share the results with others.
This page is an index of things I have written about art, and the list will be short for a while because few of the documents are ready to be posted. At this early stage the list can be simple, without a classification system.
Work on the Ugliest Part (pdf; 104 KB). To the extent that my sculptures can be said to be “well made objects”, I attribute their quality to a principle that so powerfully guides my work that I could not work without it. In my view, the working on the ugly part applies not only to sculpting, but to any action that makes a difference.
Thoughts about Brancusi and Form (pdf; 72 KB). A review of Brancusi’s thoughts on the relation between the forms of sculptures and the quality of their surfaces. Applies those ideas to my work. The ideas apply mainly to relatively simple, highly integrated forms that Brancusi called “absolute”, which includes many of my pieces.
Notes on Black Granite (pdf; 788 KB). An illustrated essay on properties of the stone I used to carve Holding Firm at 65 and Torso in Motion.
Idea for a Sculpture (pdf; not yet available). This is an example of writing that helps me to explore new territory and generate new ideas. It is nearing completion, and will be ready to post soon.
Reflections on students and teachers: a tribute to Deborah Wilson. Published in Sculpture Northwest, January/February 1998.
Art in other places: Zimbabwean sculpture in Singapore and South Africa. Published in Sculpture Northwest. May/June 1999.
Art in other places: a long series of connections to a sculptor I admire. Essay on the work of Costa Rican sculptor Jose Sancho, published in Sculpture Northwest. November/December 1999.