THE HISTORY OF THE GRID
Modernism made claim to the form and function of the grid in art and architecture. However, the grid system existed well before the twentieth century, its earliest manifestations evident in brickwork dating back to 9000 BCE. As discussed in The Grid Book (2009) by Hannah B. Higgins, grids that changed the world include the brick, the tablet, the gridiron city plan, the map, musical notation, the ledger, the screen, moveable type, the manufactured box and most recently, the Internet. These are the grids that influence my work. Inspired by the ancient and the contemporary, my work investigates the concept of order, disorder and the reorder of the grid system.
As a larger concept, my research explores how grid systems revolutionized the world. On a smaller scale, many sub-narratives become evident throughout The History of the Grid. These themes include the perception and distortion of reality (Map component,) the isolation and fragmentation of contemporary society (Brick component,) and consumer culture (Tablet component.) As a whole, my work examines, both conceptually and formally, what lies beneath the surface of society’s perception of reality, and suggests that reality can often be deceptive and misleading.
The structure of the grid fascinates me and I am intuitively aware of systems in the urban environment and in nature. I build my work in layers, using both the rigid grid and the organic patterns of nature as inspiration. The combination of manufactured with organic results in unexpected configurations. Irregularity and abnormality of form become as important as the organized grid format.
My body of work consists of 2- and 3-dimensional work. I enjoy using a variety of mediums including acrylic, steel, lead, canvas and found objects. Experimenting with materials that are unfamiliar to me is a thrilling experience. I like to explore combinations of the opaque, translucent and transparent; the visible and hidden. No absolute truths exist within my work and irony or delusion may lurk beneath the surface. This establishes an interactive dialogue with the viewer and encourages use of memory and imagination to complete that which is concealed and indiscernible.