Barrière donnée 1 : Halo de Pores 2 : Synecdoche Mal Placé (Porte)
Barrier Given - 1: Pores Halo - 2: Misplaced Synecdoche (Door)
A barrier of some kind is given in all situations - fences, Campbell's Soup® cans, skin, ozone, puberty ect. Barriers hold and limit space. They are things composed of smaller elements e.g. bricks, cells, planks. These given elements congeal into collections of grids or masses.
With out closing doors to other interpretations – this cardboard wall functions to signify psychological and communicative break between people. Once inside the store’s door this barrier’s door is open and when you enter the space you are inside me or yourself.
Cardboard boxes are a symbol of transporting goods. During the holidays they are specifically a signifier of gifts. Boxes (often) equal gifts. But all these boxes in this show have already been open and emptied. This air gives the wall a literal lightness and an implication of feeling hollow. They have transported our gifts. The box wall is now a corrugated vessel consuming space – now a readymade re-gifting just for you (plural).
In Freudian terms the wall is the part of the Id that has resulted from influencing societal systems and the Ego is the organized part - convergences between semiotics and phenomenology. The Super-ego is playing both critically and morally. Freud's barrier should also be thought of as protecting specific ego functions.
There are sixteen different lights one in each of the sixteen boxes that create the Halo. I was raised Catholic. I find dogma to be holyer than me.
Barrière donnée is an improvisational homage to Marcel Duchamp’s. Below is Duchamp’s Chocolate Grinder shape is echoed in the halo. And the back door with viewing hole is replicating the voyeuristic act of peeping but only leaving you with a tube or tunnel. At least there is light at the end of it when the show is on. As a bonus the daunting saw is there implying a slow and serrated bisection for the curious and patient viewer.
It has been really amazing watching Alex make art out of well... a pile of garbage. Barrier Given as I like to call it is ironic and deep at the same time. If you haven't had a chance to sit and spend time with this amazing installation, you should. The environment that it creates is like the ones in our childhood, those little places that were just ours, under the stairs, the tree fort, or in some cases the closet. At the same time it represents our society, and the overwhelming need to consume, and where that will leave us.
It is not just a pile of boxes. Well done Alex, Thank you