a system transforming drawings into sculptural objects utilizing made-on-demand manufacturing
The ASSEMBLY project was included in the exhibit Terrarium at the 301 Gallery in 2008. Through a project website, blog coverage, and evite, the online audience was invited to participate in creating a proposed installation (a towering stack of books, each made of a single drawing, manufactured on-demand) by sponsoring the production of the installation components. 33 collectors participated in the project, sponsoring the production of 77 books that were installed in the exhibit along with their shipping boxes. After the exhibit, the books were shipped to the collectors.
COMPONENTS AND INSTALLATION
AFTER THE INSTALLATION, COMPONENTS WERE SHIPPED TO COLLECTORS
Photos above are from Lena Corwin, documenting the receipt of her book.
TERRARIUM EXHIBIT PRESS RELEASE
BEVERLY, MA, August 12, 2008 -- Montserrat College of Art announces Maine-based artist Karen Gelardi as the featured artist for the fifth year of their Emerging Artist series. The initiative invites a promising New England artist to install their first Boston-based solo exhibition in the 301 Gallery.
Curated by Montserrat Gallery’s Assistant Curator Shana Dumont the exhibit, entitled Terrarium, features Gelardi’s newest body of work. Mixed media collages of organic foliage that grow from the gallery walls and floors reflect Gelardi’s fertile imagination. Says Dumont, “Interestingly, though the botanical forms are stylized, they do not seem distant from nature; rather their hand-made appearance mimics the apparent disorder of an overgrown garden.” The artist has staged the gallery to simulate the experience of a terrarium and includes several ‘ecosystems’, naturalistic settings, enclosures and collections. Individual works are displayed within the show for close observation, discovery and classification, emphasizing the ‘gallery as terrarium’ concept.
It is within this organic context that Gelardi explores the use of consumer goods and manufacturing technologies as artistic tools. Applying emerging production technologies, as well as traditional materials and techniques, the artist fashions customized goods that function as artistic materials or sculptural elements. She created Assembly as an experiment that investigates how nature, contemporary consumer culture, and technology overlap. An artist book project where potential art patrons can collaborate in the exhibit content, it consists of a series of three books whose pages are composed of identical black and white drawings of botanical or geometric designs. When participants purchase a book on line or in the exhibit, it will be printed “on demand” and displayed in the exhibit, adding to a growing, colorful stack of books (they will be mailed to their owners when the exhibit ends). The artist uses on-demand manufacturing because the scale of production is perfectly in synch with the demand. However, within the exhibit context, the print-on-demand books are sculptural objects, not functioning as books.
The Assembly website: www.karengelardi.typepad.com/assembly.