Monday, May 07, 2007

Translations Trials

There seems to be a convergence of Translations installations and extreme weather.The first last June was challenged by a week of newsworthy rain. The current installation at Sasaki Associates experienced the effects of a newsworthy
northeaster. When I woke one morning at 4 o'clock to the sound of whipping wind and pelting rain, my first thought was of the trees at Sasaki. Later that morning the email came.

We left shortly after for a trip to Korea (more about that later) and finally got to Sasaki on April 27th to assess the damage and make repairs. My husband Charlie was all for leaving it as is and accepting its current state as the work of nature. I didn't mind it showing the effects of nature but had gentle erosion rather than brutal destruction in mind. I also felt that the destruction was the result of a design flaw on my part not just nature's work. The paper and ink were fine. The problems occurred where the cord that attached the banners to the trees ran through.

We decided to repair some but not all. One of the trees had partially fallen banners that hung down beautifully and I rather liked the sound of the paper rustling in the breeze. We left them as they were. On another tree, the fallen pieces were a twisted mess. These we repaired as we did those on several other trees. Some of the banner pieces had completely fallen off and many of those we brought home. I was pleased with the end result and hope our current mild weather continues until the exhibit ends on June 4.

I am going to continue to experiment. My new plan is to sew the paper to cloth and run the cord through the cloth rather than the paper. I'm going to make a sample and test it on a tree over the summer. I feel fortunate that one of the characteristics I bring to my work is a willingness to keep working at a problem until I solve it. I think it brings up the merit of taking pleasure in the process. If there is enjoyment in the making, it is easy to keep repeating it until works.

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