Monday, March 16, 2015

ARTS 308 - Body Extension Sculpture Process

The Box

One end of the sculpture had to represent technology, so I chose rectangular, austere shape language that is evident in most of our popular electronics. I originally wanted to make the main color of the sculpture white to mimic the color of Apple products but I eventually chose black to represent a kind of anti-Apple.

You can see in the photos below that I used black foam core and left an indention to insert my iPhone 4.

Black foam core proved very difficult to hot-glue together into a hollow box after cutting pieces. I ended up having to reinforce the box structure with tape so it would hold together. If I had given myself more time to experiment with this technique I might have fabricated this piece with a 3D printer.

Tube of Wires

I measured the perimeter of the inside of the box against the perimeter of a plastic mask from Hobby Lobby (I ended up not using the mask but I used its perimeter as a template for later). The box perimeter was about 26" and the mask measured 27" around my face, so I cut a black fabric section that was 26" on one end, 27" on the other, and ran 18". Now I had enough fabric to fit inside the perimeter of the box while being able to fit around the mask part.

Using a 50-foot roll of 16/2 electrical wire, I cut pieces and hot-glued them to the black fabric. I split the wires and arranged them into a more organic pattern, like blood vessels, at the mask end. This process was the most time-consuming.

Finishing Touches

I glued the fabric into a tube and then glued it into the inside perimeter of the box as seen above. I got the exact shape language I had envisioned: a uniform, rhythmic composition of wires starting at the box and spreading, splitting, and turning more organic near where one's face would go. The hot glue left a lot of little plastic strings which had to be removed.

I folded the other end of the fabric into itself over a 27" strip of thick plastic and attached an elastic string to form a wearable mask.

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