Imagining a fictional archaeological site for Jean Tinguely’s self-destroying production shapes my response to Study for an End of the World #2. I look at Jean Dry Lake as a site where disposed and demolished garbage question the apocalyptic suggestions of entropy, and rebuild failed worlds through queer renewal and repair. This work collects fragments of destruction and consumption, renewing them through applications of deconstruction and reconstruction. Having a background in foundry craft and paleontology, I am inspired to use fiery material transformations to excavate evidence of reformative queer futures. Trashed aluminum is collected in a crucible and melted into the spaces of single-use plastics, burned up and remade in solid metal. Practices of polishing and attaching attempt to mend broken worlds through time and care. Shot-up metal objects are cut into pieces and welded back together forming new identities. These unfamiliar relics defy categorization, but they are directional and dynamic. The unknowability of these components creates opportunity for the archaeological act of seeking understanding, but from evidence of futures yet to be discovered. The Digging Machine seeks the queer future beneath our feet, a metaphor to structure artifacts of the relentless search. It functions within a queered renewal to defy the failure of discarded things, by rising to that discard with the bones of a body seeking flesh, muscles, salt, shelter.
Modern Desert Markings: An Homage to Las Vegas Area Land Art at the Barrick Museum of Art in Las Vegas, Nevada in collaboration with Nevadans for Cultural Preservation was curated by Hikmet Sidney Loe and Katie Hoffman.
On view until July 8, 2023.