How to Disappear Completely

Event Details
  • Date/Time:
    • Monday February 11, 2008 - Tuesday March 11, 2008
      9:00 am - 4:59 pm
  • Location: The Architecture Gallery at Southern Polytechnic State University
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Teri Nagel
College of Architecture
Contact Teri Nagel


Summary Sentence: Cottle

Full Summary: "How to Disappear Completely" reconstitutes the canonical image of the Shroud of Turin -- derived from the internet -- back into full scale in columnar beaded curtains.

OBJECTs & FABRICATIONs is an innovative exhibition that features six full scale spatial inventions, fabricated by architecturally trained artists.

The group show includes work created by Amy Landsberg, Sheri Schumacher, Mark Cottle and MonicaPonce de Leon with Tr istan Al-Haddad. The relationship between use, meaning, and fabrication is ev ident not in representations, models, plans, or drawings, but in the reality of the built objects themselves.

Mark Cottle's "How to Disappear Completely"

artist's statement
"How to Disappear Completely" reconstitutes the canonical image of the Shroud of Turin -- derived from the internet -- back into full scale in columnar beaded curtains. Fashioned by hand from paper clips, together with digital printouts on photocopy paper, each of the eight cylinders measures roughly eighteen inches in diameter by twelve feet high.

These art installations explore architecture's first gesture -- making enclosure -- working from the textile as the basic material : the drape that covers and comforts the human body, the carpets that clad the building [in, for example, Semper's version of the primitive hut], and "the cloths of heaven" -- "the draped universe" of medieval Christian and Muslim cosmology.

Whereas architecture tends to become building, my artistic investigations with textiles -- in relation to covering, draping, and comforting -- underline the ephemeral, open-ended nature of these gestures. Indeed my question is how architecture and textiles inform and implicate each other in terms of compression and expansion of space through time.

My installations engage our longing for the "other". Working with ephemeral remains : flight safety cards, travel posters of Mecca, calendars depicting Hindu deities and Japanese scenery -- together with digitally-derived images of the distant, absent body : da Vinci's Vitruvian figure on the Italian one-euro coin, paparazzi photos of Brad Pitt, the Shroud of Turin, an amateur nude posted on an internet personals site -- the work registers multiple trajectories of desire and loss.

Paper leavings -- cut into slips, folded and strung on paper clips, compressed into beads, dispersed into curtains -- become porous screens enveloping the body of the beholder -- rendering tangible the traces of the elusive and inaccessible -- much as Walter Benjamin in "The Storyteller" described a pot made by hand, and the crossover point when the fingermarks of the maker and the gripping fingers of the holder intertwine at the moment of use.

My work explores spatial and tectonic patterns as they presence themselves on the surface of experience, investigating the relationship between the making of artifacts -- operating on material from above the surface -- and the development of organisms -- emerging from below the surface. Put another way, I am interested in the borderline area where patterns of geometry and of growth encounter and interfere with each other.

Recent work addresses the interaction between pattern and surface more explicitly with digital drawings that start from three simple mathematical tiling patterns : an Archimedean tessellation of squares and triangles, a double hexagonal grid [which produces pentagons], and a basket-weave -- overlapping, scaling, and morphing them into each other to develop fluid figures across the surface of the wall, itself tiled into 11x17 sheets of photocopy paper.

The drawings do not expect geometry to order, explain, or represent the material world. Rather, in their fugitive figurations they test it as an instrument of perception. Further, they question the interpretation of ornament, exaggerating repetition and variation in order to encourage an oscillation between the decorative and the incantatory.

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In Campus Calendar

College of Design, School of Architecture

Invited Audience
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Arts and Performance
atlanta architecture, atlanta art, Georgia Tech, mark cottle, southern polytechnic university
  • Created By: Teri Nagel
  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created On: Aug 3, 2010 - 11:22am
  • Last Updated: Oct 7, 2016 - 9:47pm