CONTINUUM UNCARVED BLOCK
These sculptures are the result of my interest in making sculpture with an interesting block of stone, as it is found, with a minimal intervention into the stone. So far granite blocks seem to be most appropriate. To date I have only made one on a relatively large scale: 9’h. x 6’w. x 4’d. in Beijing pink marble, Fuzhou, Fujian, China.
There are several ideas informing this stand of sculptures that are carved in granite. The first is the “continuum”, which I understand to imply a continuation of something through time, space and in form. The 3D cross is indicative of the seven dimensions of space: as above and so below, for and aft, right and left and of course, the center. From the center one moves out into the continuum of infinite space, as indicated by the 3D cross. Form exists in a continuum of presences in space down thru time. If all these moments were to be magically assembled outside of time, one would have a solid continuum of form moving around through the world on its journey down thru time. As one experiments with each new sculpture, the form reiterates itself in time. The 3D cross is also of interest to me because it refers to all the dimensions of space that one utilizes when doing Tai Chi Chuan, which I have practiced for some thirty nine years now, This physiological and spiritual experience cannot but help to inform one’s mental and physical actions, whether in movement or in making sculpture.
The second idea involved in this symposium of sculptures is that of the “uncarved block”, which concept derives from Zen Buddhism. It indicates the state of being one aspires to where one has returned to the state of mind that is a clean slate, like that of a child before one’s “self” or self-consciousness takes over, or the state of a block of wood or stone before it is carved into something recognizable, like a Buddha. With these blocks of granite I am trying to create a sculpture that is successful aesthetically, formally and spatially as a three dimensional sculpture, with minimal intervention in the stone. I am sure I could be even more minimal, but I do like working with the stone, with space as well as with form. I also like visual and mental interest to be generated, so I don’t want to tax the eye and the mind of the viewer with too much minimalism. One does not want to minimalize the work out of being a sculpture, after all.
Another aspect that results from this particular intervention into the block of granite is the revelation of a three dimensional cross within the block of granite. This is fun since sculpture is about three dimensional form in space, so with this configuration this is now manifest. Along with the revelation of the 3D cross there is shown to be another block within the outer block. One might interpret this in a variety of interesting ways. On a large-scale version of this motif where I have more room in which to work in these interior spaces, I will polish the surface of
this inner form. I have so far carved one large piece in Beijing Pink Marble at Fuzhou, Fujian Prov., China: it is about 8 ft. hi. X 6 ft. w. x 4 ft. d.