Aluminati is a diverse and experimental foundry project that expands on the transformative and collaborative potential of hot metal casting techniques. The sustainable material-sourcing of local recycled aluminum inspires the name, along with the alchemical transformations created through fiery material processes at organized community gatherings. I work with groups of emerging artists and members of the community to create solid metal monuments that embody change and define new futures, by memorializing the gathering of a community who has united for change.
As a queer-identifying contemporary artist specializing in metal casting, my experience has taught me that an intersectional feminist voice is largely underrepresented in the realm of foundry craft. The Aluminati project challenges toxic masculinity and white-supremacist gatekeeping prevalent in foundry culture by encouraging women, BIPOC, and LGBTQ+ folks to embrace the powerfully transformative processes of making art with molten metal.
My hope is that Aluminati can light a spark of hope for a redefined renewal, an emergence of inclusive and expanded foundry practice in the realm of contemporary art. But more importantly, this expansion can be a tool for reconnecting folks to their lost pasts and futures, to empower history and represent a hopeful, inclusive, sustainable and equitable foundry.
Aluminati, the inaugural project, was hosted by the University of Nevada, Las Vegas College of Fine Arts (UNLV CFA) Art Walk, a free public event in November 2021.
Aluminati x Mendieta was a free workshop in collaboration with the Barrick Museum of Art, funded by the Art Bridges Foundation in July 2022.
Aluminati: Love Letters to the Future made a monument to community love at the UNLV CFA Art Walk, a free public event in November 2022.
I wrote about Aluminati for Couch in the Desert: Aluminati: Rekindling a Forgotten Future of Foundry, April 2023.
Find more from the Aluminati community on Instagram @Aluminati_LV
General Aluminati news and links HERE.
Collaborating artists of Aluminati projects:
Kay Leigh Farley
Katie B Funk
E. A. Adams