Past Present Perfect
Past Present Perfect is a departure from my recent collaborative, more performance-based projects that reveal little-known histories. Past Present Perfect is an invented part of speech to accompany this project, based on an imagined future. Thinking of the gallery of as a museum of the not-yet-happened, the works are investigations or encounters with fragments of dishware based on a future when we have forgotten what to do with them.
Each of the works addresses an extrapolated tidbit of a dinner party but nowhere is this obvious. The installation consistently employs abstraction to imply the distance in knowledge between a time when the actions around eating were understood and a future when someone is trying to interpret that knowledge.
Drawing Set for Eight (graphite on paper) traces the actions of soup bowls, salad plates, dinner plates and dessert dishes from a formal five-course meal. In frames, groups of parentheses are captured in beeswax. The parentheses are slices of plates turned on their edges, giving a new perspective on the round forms we are so accustomed to using. Representing sound waves, together the framed works mimic a snippet of a conversation at a dinner party.
Employing or interrupting the technology of production, there is a wall display of just barely vacuum-formed wares. The taut forms accentuate the silhouettes of the lips of a 15 place dish-set and highlight their depth. The ceramic works focus on the edges and cross sections of tableware. These forms look a bit like cuneiform in 3D.
Denied context, the raw materials of a dinner party, the dishes, actions and even the food are reconstituted and re-materialized. Potatoes, act as batteries for al light box, My hope is that these works have a poetic distance from their source, allowing for an interpretation of the perfectly familiar in an unfamiliar form. I often feel this discontinuity in our food system and imagining a future where our patterns are lost seems shockingly plausible.
©Amber Ginsburg 2008-2012
amberginsburg [at] gmail [dot] com