Saturday, April 16, 2016

interior and exterior

Oracle 1992 by Steven Heinemann  Pressed earthenware, once fired
This post is about two sculptures that I saw this past week while in Toronto.  They are in the Gardiner Museum, third floor.  The above piece resembles a bundled figure, and it immediately caused me to recognize my self.  The artist is Steven Heinemann.

It appears to be a heavy, massive closed container, but the interior empty space is very important.
 "I'm intrigued with the way spaces can appear to be concentrated.  God knows that its the same space everywhere - inside or outside - but there's something about the dynamic of containment that seems to charge one's attention."  S. Heinemann
Under the Rocks and Stars #2 1988-1990 by Steven Heinemann, pressed earthen ware, sand blasted, multiple firings
There were two sculptures, side by side.  Both of their inner spaces opened with an archetypal shape.  This designed opening creates a tension and union between the natural clay and mankind's historical culture.  Interior and exterior.  Decorative and austere.

About the interior space, Heinemann says:  "I'm only partially conscious of it.  It's the one commonality in all my work.  It haunts the work."
tree hugs 2011 by Judy Martin  variety of dimensions, balsam branches wrapped with dyed cloth
Raphael Yu speaks about Steve Heinemann's work  in this video.

I've blogged about my own bundle explorations here, here, here , here, here, and here if you are interested.


  1. Thank you for this, especially for the link back to your "starting over" post. I find your wrappings so beautiful, organic, holding life and death & there is comfort in them, a swaddling feeling. "I am in the work, and the work is in me," I'm going to think on this quote today.

  2. covering protecting bundling binding containing ... this post and your links to the bound works you have made over the years help me understand the thoughts and processes involved in Sheila Hicks "The Embassy of Chromatic Delegates, 2015–16" for the Biennale of Sydney
    they did not talk to me within the cavernous gallery space... they felt totally self contained happy in their own world... my eyes felt invasive, prying so I turned away

  3. thank you for that link, Mo. I would love to see what she exhibited in australia and also at art basel. This image came up when I googled her - it is of art basel.

    It was also on the cover of an art forum - which I ripped off and pasted up in my studio for a few months.

    I also am moved by the last sentence of your comment - and that is a valid response. xo

  4. this has given me much to think on. thank you.

  5. it's the holding, beautiful

  6. Thank you for posting the links to your "bundles" works. Very lovely, meaningful objects.


Thank you for taking the time to connect. Much appreciated.xx