Regarding the discarded

Presented by Artscapes, a public art program run by Spaceworks Tacoma, the exhibition Regarding the Discarded employs objects made from mill waste and a question to open dialogues on the definitions and the value of art.

The question of whether we as artists are turning garbage into something of value or just another form of garbage reminds us of the subjectivity in art; thus encourages the viewer to review how he or she defines and values art which could be different from how an artist or a cultural establishment does. Using waste and art as examples to explore the change of perspectives, the exhibition intends to examine autopilot modes that most of us rely on for everyday tasks. Do we know when to switch off to ask questions, to see potentials, or simply to connect more?

The Story

The displayed wooden objects are made from mill waste, various sized thin veneers which came from 2007 when we processed lumber in our studio.

Normally, we'd put aside our mill waste for kindling. But something in the sheer amount of veneer caught our eye.

Using glue and clamps, we found a way to group all into bundles, easier to handle and store.

Years went by. The bundles remained untouched in storage until 2018 when we had to reclaim the space.

We took each bundle back to a band saw, the same tool used for milling, to trim edges, cut into planks and divide the planks into these objects.

All the decisions made in the process were intuitive. As we completed the objects, a question began to emerge: "Are we as artists turning garbage into something of value or just another form of garbage?"

Suppose the fate of these objects were different, on a sidewalk instead of inside this window. Would you still look at them the same way?

Waste and art seem to share something in common. Whether they can become something of value may be the viewer's call.

Exhibition Dates and Location:

April 18 2019 - July 24 2019

Woolworth Window # 1 , Corner of 11th St. and Commerce St. Tacoma, WA