Handshake4: Material reads- Honesty & Subversion

In my first conversation with my mentor in the Handshake 4 project, Vincent Pontillo-Verrastro, he questioned me about my approach to materials.

My answer was unintentionally somewhat disingenuous, largely because I had never truly articulated it properly. I said at the time that I used leather because of its aesthetic qualities. While this is true, it’s not the entire answer. Leather as a material has other “reads” depending on its use… reads that I privately play with but I’m not sure I’ve been ready to make concrete and divulge properly.

At the end of our first conversation, he challenged me to create 10 pieces using contrasting materials that weren’t leather. I chose latex and mild steel. They were two materials that I had had sitting in my studio for some time and had wanted to do something with, but had never thought of combining in one piece until this point.

Latex has similar properties to leather in some ways. It behaves something like leather on steroids. It stretches, it melds, it clings. And, like leather, it has different reads depending on its context. Honesty/Subversion1


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