Creating sculpture that transforms the massed detritus of everyday life.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Artomatic 2017

"Things My Father Used to Say" 

Work in Process

I'm on the 3rd floor at Artomatic, space 3401. I'll be there for the opening on Friday, March 24 - come see me.

I'm showing embroidered shop rags, and two coffee cup pieces. My goal is to get feedback on the work, to get a sense of how they come across to other people.

My wall, before I was completely done installing.

I got a bunch of the rags from my mechanic, so they smell like a machine shop:

These are one more step in my attempt to get a handle on who my dad was.

It's really hard to make abstract work about someone who used so few words, who was all about actions over language, and never wanted to describe himself in sentimental terms.

I feel like I'm trying to define the space around him, in order to explain who he was.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Danger Coffee

Untitled, Work About My Dad, 2016

Steel curlicues from the lathe on which my dad taught me to make bushings. The lathe is currently in service at North Shore Axle and Machine, in North Reading, Massachusetts,

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Coffee and a Cigarette

Mug for my Dad

I picked up a set of these mugs, which match an ashtray we had when I was a kid, at the Goodwill. I think we had a taller mug that looked like this as well.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Film Explorations

More exploration of surface, and the transformation of form through massing...
They remind me of seaweed pods.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Taking Flight, 2014

Installed at Illinois Wesleyan, November 2014 

This was an amazing opportunity and an amazing gallery, and I was really, really looking forward to giving the artist talk.

And then I got the killer migraine from hell, and ended up curled up in a ball on the curator's office floor, unable to function.

So that sucked...

But the opportunity was still wonderful, and I felt really good about the installation.


Saturday, February 22, 2014

Cannot Be Turned, 2014

Installation at Gettysburg College Library

Cannot Be Turned, 2014 16mm film installation at Gettysburg College Library, Summer 2014

“Atropos, she who cannot be turned, who at death with her shears cuts the thread of life.” 

More photos

These are the names of the dead; each piece of film is a story.

Some deaths move us intellectually, but leave us emotionally whole. Others tear into our hearts in ways that never fully heal.

These are the names that have been entrusted to me, by people who still mourn.

16mm film is no longer the primary medium for documenting and retelling our stories. Libraries, which used to hold large collections of 16mm films for research and educational use, have switched over to DVDs and streaming video. But unlike digital media, 16mm film is literally transparent, consistently offering its subject up to the naked eye.

These are the stories of the people left behind. In recording them letter by letter, I make each a part of my own story. The contrast between the transparency of film and intangibility of memory is strong for me.

In punching each name through the film, my hands ache.

My father, Antonio Radocchia, died suddenly on March 16, 2013, of a heart attack while driving. He was 81, it was fast, he’d been having a pretty good day, and he didn’t hurt anyone else in the process. It was a good way to die.

But my father’s body had been suffering from increasingly sever emphysema for the previous two years, and he was spectacularly lousy at dying. Normally calm, he was angry and anxious. He didn’t know how to cope with anything he couldn’t fix with his own hands. Before he was sick, he was proud of his accomplishments, but never boastful; he occasionally told me stories of his life, and these were rare gifts which I cherished. But he was diminished by his illness in his own eyes, and while even before he became sick he would never have consented to letting me record his experiences and memories, when he knew he was dying it became an impossibility.

This piece is part of my ongoing effort to understand losing my father and his stories.

You are welcome to share your own story, to be included in the ongoing piece.

Thank you to the Musselman Library for donating the 16mm film used in this piece. Quote from GreekMythology.com 

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Ampersand for the Nov. 11, 2013 issue of The New Republic Magazine

In October, I was contacted out of the blue by the Art Director of The New Republic, asking if I could create an Ampersand out of film, for the "Books & the Arts" section of their magazine, It would run in the same issue as the last review of their long-time film critic, Stanley Kauffman, who had just died.

With about 2 weeks until deadline, I set to work. I messed around with short and long pieces of film, played with foam core, straight pins and super glue, and sent the AD several working photos of the piece, which he responded to enthusiastically. When the piece was finished, I booked the excellent photographer Pete Duvall, and he and I worked together to get just the right shot.

Which I thought was this:

And of course the Art Director hated it.

The film in this photo, while beautiful, doesn't read enough like film. In retrospect, this turn of events wasn't surprising as the AD and I had not discussed the lighting in enough detail. Which is basically my fault, since this was my first experience working with a magazine, and I didn't know what questions to ask ahead of time.

Luckily, I had a back-up plan, and Pete was available to work with me again the next day.

This time I used film with more light areas in the image, so that it would read more as transparent, and created more shadows on the back drop. And of course, adding the film reel helped give it context.

The AD loved it. And it was pretty darn awesome to see my work in print 3 weeks later:

Friday, April 5, 2013

Film Dragon 1

Photo taken at the Thurmont Library in Frederick County, MD. 
I've loaded more photos from the show onto flickr, but most are not yet edited.
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