Date of Award
Master of Fine Arts (MFA)
Emily Cornell Du Houx
I’ve come to the conclusion that I have no interest in controlling and manipulating matter to my own heart’s content. I’m rather bored of rigidly perfect geometries and sentiments. Rather than controlling materials I allow them to do as they please. I capture their moment of revelation, and allow them to speak for themselves. I realize this process of making demotes me from creator to conduit, but I’ve noted that the materials have a far more unique and intelligent message than I could ever imagine.
So, I listen to matter. Matter has one very good friend, the center of the earth; and the forces that attract them to one another are gravity and decay. As designers we have made enemies of these two forces. What if we treated these foes as friends and allowed the materials to do as they wish rather than forcing them to be star crossed lovers? I once believed that to be a good designer you had to be the master of texture, I know now that great design doesn’t require unyielding control but a respect for the materials.
My process doesn’t just consist of reuniting material relationships it also deals in the magic of my own intuition. My decisions on how to sculpt matter are led by a balance between listening to materials, and by adhering to my own intuition, which is the ability to understand something immediately without the need for any conscious reasoning. It allows for the hands to inform the mind. When I think of myself as a designer the term funambulist comes to mind. A Funambulist is what people in Ancient Rome called a tightrope walker. Adrenaline coursing, senses heightened, a quiet mind, intuition is necessary, a fated path, a focus on journey rather than destination, balance tested, and gravity respected.
How do I tame gravity?
Plasencia, Cecilia, "A natural circus" (2018). Masters Theses. 285.
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