Friday, May 10, 2013

Cadillac Coincidence (?)

This is a screen shot (the best I could do at capturing a still image) of the 2008 movie, Cadillac Records.  What I want you to notice is the ceramic lattice wall that serves at the backdrop of the music stage on this movie set of the 1947 Chicago Club, Macomba Lounge.  I've done some very little internet research and I found that a reproduction set of the club was built in New Orleans, but not much more.  Attention Mr. Nicolas Locke (Art Director), if you're out there - I would very much like to know about your research and set construction!  

You: Seriously, though what does this have to do with anything?

Me: Patience, this is Blogger, not Tumblr . . . bear with me.

I came across this movie scene about one month after I had just spent an intense ten weeks casting and building with this same oriental window form.  My initial plan was to build with this form much like you see here in the movie, however constraints of time and logistics sent me down another kind of building path.

You: I'm relatively certain that the only significance here is a kind of eerie coincidence.

Me: Maybe true, be let me tell you the story and show you the work anyway? [flutters eyelashes, smiles adoringly]

I purchased the original window object in Taiwan.  It's sort of a staple in aging architectural structures in the Taipei area that involve traditional elements.  A Taiwanese ceramics factory still produces these windows in two sizes and two glaze colors: amber and turquoise.   This is the typical catalyst for my work: scavenging for dated, but beautiful and intriguing forms in which I can see the potential for building, deconstructing, or re-inventing through my skills as a ceramist. Here (to cite their validity as a historic object) they are as part of a permanent educational exhibition at the New Taipei City Yingge Ceramics Museum, Taipei, Taiwan:

As with all the objects I cast, this one began to reveal its complex curves and negative spaces through the mold-making process, but when I was able to finally slip-cast the forms in clay, studio time got really fun.  I've included a slide show of this process, and below that, some images of the final work.


You: Cool.

Me: Yeh, less than 400 words, thank you, you can go back to Facebook now.