- ItemOpen AccessKelsey Gruber: capstone(2022) Gruber, Kelsey, artistThe artist's statement: My work explores the phenomenon of death as a portal. I transmute antiquated objects into something new through various types of preservation. I let most of my materials come to me through happenstance, or what I believe to be fate. This implies that the materials have died in some way, whether it be a literally dead specimen or a metaphorically dead object: one that is obsolete, or has been given up by its previous owner. I take these objects and I conserve their liminal attributes in a way that protects, honors, and holds as sacred. I use vinyl plastic furniture wrap to preserve larger found objects that associate to the daily home (chairs, fence). I custom "tailor" the plastic wrap to each object and hand-sew the wrap along with the "ruined" parts of the found object; perceived brokenness. By honoring the broken parts, the pieces are given a new meaning and new life through preservation. For more natural materials like the wasp nests and dead flora, I apply coats of clear protective spray enamel to harden their structure and in some cases to add shine. This elongates their lives and "freezes" them in the state of death - this state becomes a portal to rebirth. By combining notions of overgrowth and death with preservation and protection, my work creates a liminal yet everlasting portal. This transformation shifts our common narratives around death into something continuous rather than something that is final. I have been curious about death from a young age, and I needed to come up with a way that I could connect with death in a factual, but meaningful way. Death does not only exist in the cessation of life: it exists in creation and all throughout life in terms of rebirth. Death is not an end, it is in fact a cycle that is as close to us as our waking lives. Between these moments of constant death and life is where I find the fibers of creation; the poetry of existence; the honey and the egg.
- ItemOpen AccessDominic Cutilletta: capstone(Colorado State University. Libraries, 2022) Cutilletta, Dominic, artistThe artist's statement: Making things has always been my way of expressing myself, with a physical manifestation, or tangible objects being the result of my understanding and interactions with the world. I am making work that puts me into my own world in which I can do anything I want, and essentially draw in metal in a way that will hold up over time within a 3D space. I think the confrontation sculpture creates with the viewer, often interacting directly with each other is a very powerful and relevant aspect of sculpture that’s helped my body of work land where it is. I’m constantly focused on my emotions resulting from the situations we find ourselves in as humans who form relationships with one another and things around us that can’t be seen, but experienced. The relationships and connections I've formed with the beings and things I've experienced throughout my life is a driving force in preserving memories through sculpture. I've chosen to represent this through metalwork and welding specifically to satisfy my appetite for irony in that it’s one of the processes holding, or connecting much of the world around us together. I want to accentuate and display a material of which I love with formal concepts reminiscent of a creepy whimsical fuzzy dreamscape memory.
- ItemOpen AccessHannah Chatham: capstone(Colorado State University. Libraries, 2021) Chatham, Hannah, artistThe artist's statement: I experiment in combining different materials and processes to create unexpected forms. Sculptures of fused wax, wool, and metal explore traditional techniques and new connections. Life-casting allows for self-objectification with a sense of humor. Plant, animal, and human anatomy blend together, playing between ironic and erotic.
- ItemOpen AccessMandy Kaufman: capstone(Colorado State University. Libraries, 2021) Kaufman, Mandy, artistThe artist's statement: I highlight the way that leather can be used as both a fabric and as an armor to show the different ways that we interact and give meaning to the world's oldest material. My work is heavily inspired by Brutalism and how this style of architecture highlights the strengths and inherent qualities of concrete. In the way that architects such as, Le Corbusier used concrete and its capability to create massive, clean, reduced structures to show the beauty of concrete as a medium I strive to extend this philosophy to materials that I use. My work with leather shows the inherent strengths of this ancient medium. I use leather as a material to explore the lines between concepts like masculinity and femininity. I explore the poetic irony of a heavy, masculine material used to make a light, feminine form. I also explore the lines between different forms of life such as plant life and different animal life from mammal to reptile and human and the relationships we have, to each of them and how those relationships should change.
- ItemOpen AccessTaylor Morrow: capstone(Colorado State University. Libraries, 2021) Morrow, Taylor, artistThe artist's statement: Art is derived from basic forms found in nature, crafted and stylized with our own complex perception of reality. Using simple lines of metal to form trees, creating large stone circles, or making wooden cubes allow the initial framework to be universally recognizable. Details such as the addition of paint, smaller wires, glossy beads, dynamically cut wood, or pools of liquid resin can be added to these basic, or more abstract forms to create a new layer or dimension of realism. The placement of smaller materials help the eye flow across the overall form, with accents such as resin seeming to flow like rivers, clusters of beads stretching outward, and various carvings of shapes pointing in certain directions, organizing together in patterns and recognizable symbols. This essentially lets the viewer find themselves lost in the artwork, finding intentional, or unintentional meanings in the art whilst still being able to return in larger composition. A diversity of materials allows the art to portray a variety of aesthetics ranging from something raw and organic, like the look of plants, stone, or burnt wood, to something entirely artificial, with the use of industrial parts, polished metal, glass, fluorescent paints, digital fabrication, and computer animation. This allows the art to tell a multitude of narratives. In many cases, it is a physical representation of our evolution from the primitive to the modern. Furthermore, the synthesis of these materials in unconventional ways allows for environments to form that only exist in imaginative space.