My work is a synthesis of cultural dichotomies: mind-body, man-nature, past-future, and craft-technology.
My process always begins by looking for the human core of an idea. I'm seeking the elemental and enduring: warmth, focus, light, time, movement, stasis, hardness, or softness - the things behind everything we have ever made. At times, discovering these essentials means researching a traditional process, material, or design. But my process is equally experiential. Baking sourdough bread, riding my bicycle over hills, backpacking in the wilderness, and playing guitar tune my mind, hand, and body to think together.
My practice includes very modern tools like CNC machining, 3D scanning, CAD modeling, TIG welding, and thousandths of an inch precision. But, my use of this advanced equipment is directed towards the intimacy of craft - a physicality and materiality of process. By exploring the core of the objects I make, I'm pulling it's meaning to the surface, and allow it to express itself in an iconic way - without artifice - whether that is mechanism, structure, material, or form.
“We shape our tools and thereafter our tools shape us.” – Marshall McLuhan
The animal instinct in us to create things initially gave life to the necessary artifacts of human life – shelter, clothing, sources of warmth and light. Our intellect (and opposable thumbs) allowed us to extend order-making across a diverse set of natural systems - it is our defining characteristic a species on this planet. Our order making has gone beyond that of any other species, and we are getting better and better at it with each new generation. We are standing on the shoulders of giants - our most creative and productive ancestors - achieving levels of progress and abstraction that takes a lifetime to start to understand.
Today, we are harnessing these fully evolved capabilities to optimize vast material extractions, maintain complex manufacturing processes, manage global distribution networks, and deliver omnipresent marketing strategies. We use these systems to create more comfort, more wealth, more leisure, more happiness.
Yet as we do this, we cocoon ourselves in a world of our own logic - replacing the manna of the physical world with the thin and fleeting allure of ease. How are these generations of abstraction and belief changing us? Our 21st century digital existence has allowed us to virtually transcend worldly constraints, and I fear degrading simple natural relationships (to dirt, to hard labor, to the feeling of hunger) that nourish us. Discomfort. Hardship. We are cashing in blisters for pixels and handshakes for likes.
My work focuses on the premise that our instinct for intellect is removing us from our most basic emotional and spiritual needs as a species. In everything I make I am seeking to create dialogue bridging our basic instinct to shape matter with the natural relationships we will never transcend. The need for food; for human touch and comfort; for light and for song - these won't be outdated, so long as we have bodies...