The Studio of Eric Valosin

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Circles and the Cosmos

A few notes of housekeeping:

1) I've been maintaining my ritualized practice of Circle making, using my custom cyclical rear-projection table. Here's a link to a directory of all the circle drawings that emerge from this practice, which I'll be updating periodically. My goal of making a circle each week has been put on hold for a bit while I order more supplies and sort out this whole graduation/moving studios thing...

2) On that note, I'M GRADUATING AND MOVING STUDIOS! Look for another very sappy and retrospective post on that soon, but tomorrow I will be officially receiving my diploma from Montclair State University for completing a Master of Fine Arts.

3) In light of that, coming up in a few weeks will be the openings of a show at the Arts Guild NJ in Rahway featuring some of NJ's new MFA grads called Fresh Meat/Young Blood (June 2, 1-4pm), as well as my THESIS SHOW entitled This Show Means Right Now, in Chelsea at Magnan Metz (June 6, 6-8pm)

4) Finally, my brand new artist monograph, a 91 page self-published book will very soon be available in both print and digital versions! more details coming soon (does anyone else smell a bunch of posts coming?)

And now down to business:

It's past due that I post about a series of drawings I've started on 18% Gray Cards. Gray Cards are the tools used by photographers to literally balance the digital and analogue worlds, so I thought it would be a fitting support for cosmological drawings that hang in the balance between those worlds. The first in the series deconstruct the cosmological forms in traditional mandalas, which have floated throughout a lot of my work lately, using only erasure as a markmaking tool:

The second group within this series has been giving me more difficulty. My professor, Nancy Goldring, suggested to me waiting to see what I see in the gray card before starting. I did, and what I immediately saw were the flaws and imperfections of the card. I thought that was perfect for a relational theology of grace, so I started with that and began concentrically outlining each imperfection. Where they intersected inevitably created new negative spaces, which I then filled in. I then connected each of the centers of these new spaces with each other, to create a sort of sacred geometry - a naturally occurring, somewhat implausible form that arose from the negative space that lies at the intersections of imperfection. A sort of relational systems theory of grace. 

It seemed a bit far afield from from the visual vocabulary of nothingness I've been developing in my other works however, so I gave a second try, this time replacing the graphite concentric outlines with impressions made with a dead ballpoint pen, filling in the negative spaces with erasure rather than graphite, and then adding the geometric lines with graphite rather than the bolder pen.

It still ended up a bit more "bushwick geometric abstraction 101" that I would have liked, to quote another professor, who proposed that the erased negative space might be enough of a geometry on its own, and that maybe the flaws would even triangulate themselves from that without the concentric lines. So I tried moving the whole process to a layer of tracing paper, leaving only the erased forms:

Interesting, but I don't think the imperfections actually show up at all and it ends up being maybe too arcane seeming. So I went back to the complete process, but stopping at the erasure:

I'm not sure what I think, but that's where I've left off... Any suggestions, internet world?

Here they all are as I presented them for my final exam, along with Gnomon in my studio:

Much more to come soon!

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