Friday, April 12, 2013

RustEcology Mythology: The Rules and The Guardian of Rust

Artist's Statement for RustEcology Mythology: The Rules and Guardian of Rust

Once upon a time humans could have altered the course of their technology rush, their building boom, their destruction in the name of construction and progress. The clarion call of scientists and ecologists could have been heeded. It was not. In this scenario, the ice melted, waters rose. Rust rode the waves to rule the land. Crumbled detritus became the impetus for what has so often happened in human history: a mythology emerged to explain events and existence. In Post-Apocalyptic times this is known as RustEcology Mythology. Its basic tenets are represented here in this diptych.

It started when I got the message to create something about the environment. All of these rusty bits were findings, by several different friends, on beaches, mountain paths, old barns, holes that must be dug, and the rusty, no-longer-operable kick-stand in Amsterdam (anchoring the lower left of the diptych). So much rust in our environment. And it is beautiful even as it is trash. The ceramic bits are a broken replica of a pre-Columbian mask also donated by a friend, the same one who brought me the "guardian" and all the rusty, long nails I shoved under the "tablet." It seemed fitting that these are together in a composition--the then and the now. I chose to hold it all together compositionally with the texturing material I use--a mix of lightweight spackle and gel medium. Painted with acrylics in blues and greens and violets, with some micaceous iron oxide mixed in, and a fabulous paint called quinacridone nickel/azo gold which had the rust tones to it, on the top of the texture.

I had the idea that this diptych represents a new mythology, a "RustEcology Mythology," that perhaps arose in some future generation that was looking for a way to justify all the rust in our environment. Rust takes on a life of its own--the proof is in those amazingly fascinating photographs of the Titanic, for instance.

This diptych is on two wood panels that measure 24 inches by 36 inches with an inch and a half profile from the wall. Together, they weigh under 20 lbs (guessing).