Superior Artist Run Centre
installation by Linda Dell, Sept 8 to Oct 7, 2006
day prior to the opening for this exhibition, the local newspaper
ran a story
short examination of the concept of this art was submitted
layout is 2 nails 60" above the floor,
This work, titled Missing provides an opportunity to explore the notion of a conceptual absence and it's occupation of space within frames of time and preconception. One could reasonably define the word "missing" as a failure to make contact or identification with an item or concept. It is also possible to view "missing" as a direct contact or engagement with absence. Missing is a word which navigates language with varied grammatical functions and meanings.
Art is evidence. Our recognition of this is part of our human condition. When a valued work of art becomes a missing work of art, the perception of it shifts. Beyond the questions involved with a mysterious circumstance, this absence becomes a vehicle for contact with one's interior existence.
Ex nihilo, Latin for "out of nothing," is frequently used with theories of creation. Creation is often used as a substitute word for art. Creatio ex nihilo theory suggests God made the world from nothing, or, as Missing indicates, no thing. This moves into the arena of Thing Theory whereby an object becomes a thing when it stands apart from the backdrop of the world around it.
In 1911 the Mona Lisa was stolen from the Louvre. Scores of people formed very long queues for an opportunity to personally witness the empty space once occupied by the painting. The vacancy was evidence that there was a space intended for occupation by the painting.
A work of art is expected
in a gallery setting. An artwork removed from a grouping will prompt
speculation, and, in some cases, anxiety. The deliberate absence the
thing provides an unfulfilled expectation followed by speculation
over the intent of the message conveyed. This absence of art in a
context where it is expected is a valid contribution to the narrative
tradition of art.
There are among us, people who have a deep regard for art. Particular fondness for a work of art which goes missing can lead to grief over the loss. This is the condition the bouquet of red roses tied with a black ribbon indicates. As a symbol for mourning, this bouquet will be changing throughout the time Missing is on exhibit. This changing symbol will further the narrative by reflecting the passage of time in its relation to our response to absence.
I enjoy the play of
words and symbols. The word missing, as both an adjective and a verb,
can be used in a number of ways. Red Roses symbolize love and passion,
the black ribbon connotes grief, while the number thirteen is identified
with misfortune. The two nails imply care is taken when I hang my
art and I am identified by name on the label.