As the son of a historian and teacher, I was raised with an appreciation of history, education, and the relics and lessons of the past, so it should come as no surprise that I would eventually become an artist/educator who uses discarded objects as the raw materials for art.
Objects have power, they are invested with meaning and purpose by their makers. They carry with them stories of past use, past users, and often a history we, as their temporary custodians, can only guess at. This point becomes ever more poignant in the face of our capitalist/consumerist culture. We throw so much stuff away. Cool stuff.
I endeavor to redeem this situation by using what would typically be considered junk to make objects that are well-crafted, conceptually engaging, and accessible to a wide audience—in the hope of encouraging people to consider their refuse as a valuable resource, or at the very least, to think about their trash at all. Who made this? Where and when was it made? Who owed it and why? How did it get here? Why was it discarded? Does it have any use or meaning now? Where will it eventually go?
I wish to examine and re-contextualize found objects and materials, to invest them with new life, and to sanctify — or at least acknowledge their presence in the world. Or perhaps, more accurately, to acknowledge my presence as these materials’ temporary curator, archivist and re-purposer. My aim is to turn the lowest form of human productivity, trash, into the highest, art — a kind of modern alchemy.
Photos and press release for this artist.
Residency: May 2005 - July 2005
Art Exhibition: Friday, July 22 & Saturday, July 23
Andrew Junge's website