CALENDAR OF EVENTS
Wednesday, June 17
5-7 pm • Works in Progress Reception
Saturday, September 26
Works in Progress Reception celebrating International Sculpture Day, Earth Day
All is well at Sculpture Space and, now that it is warm, we are turning up the heat on fundraising for a new boiler to keep us (and all of you) from freezing during the winter months. As always, your contributions are most welcome and greatly appreciated. I am pleased to announce the 2016 schedule of Artists in Residence in this issue, as well as an interview with Linda Molenaar who recently went back home to Amsterdam after spending March and April in Utica. For more happenings in the studio (Rosemarie Fiore making smoke paintings and Matt Kenyon making pyramids from martini glasses), please follow our Facebook page and check out our website for incoming artists! In June, we will begin to construct our new Community Garden, a partnership with the Oneida County Health Department and the City of Utica — will be looking forward to showing it off at our next Works in Progress, June 17th!
The Sculpture Space Review Committee is pleased to announce the following artists have been selected as Funded Artists in Residence for the 2016 year, as approved by the Board of Directors.
ARTIST IN RESIDENCE: LINDA MOLENAAR
(Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
in conversation with MONIKA BURCZYK
MONIKA: You began as a sculptor, then went back to school for a second degree in performance. Can you talk about how these two practices are related in your current work?
LINDA: In my current work the themes and my desire to create art are the same, both in objects and performance. The way to get to an end result is often a different path because the body has certain restrictions, and the way of presenting is different. I also reach a different audience by working interdisciplinary. I have always challenged myself to start something new, mainly in materials.
As much as I love to create sculptures and always will, in my performances I seem to have covered a different ground and I enjoy and embrace this new area that I am still exploring. Sometimes an object becomes a performance I never know for sure, how exciting!
MB: Many of your pieces, especially performance, feature different animals and I know you had a pet crow for a while. Can you tell me more about why you choose to work in this way?
LM: I work mainly with Dutch animals we know and somehow intimately or not we have a relation to them. I like animals but I cannot have them; I am never home and I like them in the wild. I was a foster parent to a crow for a while, but one day it decided to leave me which is what I’d hoped. Animals tell us a lot about ourselves, they mirror us. I prefer working with natural materials, and that turns out often to be from an animal. I like these materials as they come with their own history, which I incorporate into the creative process.
MB: Many of your performances demand a great deal of stamina and physical endurance. How does this affect you and how does this affect your audience?
LM: I just try to be healthy and strong, both physically and mentally. In the past, I have been asked to perform without time to prepare and that is always a struggle. In terms of the audience, I challenge their patience until they reach a certain stillness, at least that is my goal. But of course, it’s a hard thing to expect, and sometimes people adopt a humorous stance instead and it becomes more of a joke. I cannot protect myself when I perform so I am very vulnerable; and, because of the lack of entertainment, people start to be more aware of their own bodies and thoughts as well as each others — that can be quite confusing!
MB: You have stated that your work often involves finding and locating special materials that take a long time to acquire; can you give me a specific example?
LM: The piece I made in Utica with the piano hammers is a perfect example. I had seen one first at my friend’s house who is a musician. I loved it as an object and she gave me one. Then a pianist friend offered me a whole set. As I thought I might need more, I called around to many different places, including a school that teaches how to restore pianos and a place that collects old pianos and sorts their parts for recycling. As you might imagine, these places were like treasure chests for me! I loved that all of the hammers I collected contain a past of playing music in different styles, places and by different people. It took me six months to collect them all and until I came to Sculpture Space I wasn’t sure what I would do with them. For me, this is a far more interesting way to collect and find materials than just buying them at a store.
MB: You have been in the US many times, and are planning on returning this summer for another residency in New York State. Can you talk about your time in Utica and how it might affect you into the future?
LM: I’ve spent my time mainly by myself in the house or at the studio. I experienced that as a luxury in my life to not have any distractions at all. It has been both difficult and good at the same time! Usually I am very outgoing and outdoorsy – but with the snow and not knowing the city I was able to work on things that I usually find ways to procrastinate! This will definitely be something that has an effect, but not so obviously or easily seen. Toward the end of my stay I met some local artists – one of whom I collaborated with – which was great.
MB: We have enjoyed having you – I know we at Sculpture Space as well as the friends you made while you were here would love to welcome you back sometime soon!
Hand Tools (new or in good condition)
Gardening Hand Tools
(4) Double Beds with Frames
Flat screen TV