Upscale (water)

Through a series of works entitled Upscale, I explored how artworks evoke the notion of anonymity in rural and forest environments. The projects were carried out at various sites across Europe between 2006 and 2010. They examine how one body can display different facets of itself, in outwardly similar environments, in different physical locations, from the Ukraine, to Poland, to France. Upscale treats the earth itself as a body in which human beings grow like plants. The monumental ephemeral works are woven in wicker and measure between 6 m² and 100 m². They were made from sketches and photographs of unknown models and represent generic extremities of a human body that are not attributable to a particular person. Works on land can be accessed here.

Influenced by Ana Mendieta Silhouetta series and by the theory of Gaia (Mother Earth), Piersi (Breasts, 2006), alludes to a human body that depend on the earth while also moving away from it. The sculpture consists of a pair of female breasts 4 m. long x 2 m. wide x 1m. tall, woven on land before being placed on a raft in the middle of a Lake at the Botanical Garden Bolestraszyce near a border town in eastern Poland from which one can see the Ukraine. Although Piersi is not a fountain, one can imagine a relationship between the forms and the water flowing around them, the works nurturing the environment as a mother breastfeeds her child. The sculpture floated on the lake for a year, until the work naturally dispersed into the lake.

Nabrac Wode w Usta (Silence is Golden), reframes the surrounding pond, creating a window that alludes to the transformative effect of the human presence on the natural landscape. It was created during an artist residency sponsored by the municipal government of Rudnik and later maintained by local village residents.

De tête (Head First, 2008) was created during the Étangs d’Art Festival – an event featuring artworks on water, and the piece explores our interdependence with this vital resource. The three human heads are silhouettes woven on wooden structures arranged on the Chambre au Loup lake in Brittany, an hour from Rennes. Installed on steel rods, they measure 2.5 m – 3.5 m. long. Each head was exposed to the river’s strong current, adding to the notion of movement present in the work. The three “swimmers” were installed diagonally on the river, their profiles emerging one after another. They seem to participate in a race leading nowhere.

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