Nocturnal Hologram, 2015
Sand, Friendly Plastic, inkjet prints on protoplast made from photograms of dream images
48 x 63 x 46 inches
Mixed media objects (made objects, assisted readymades and readymades) inspired by the artist's dreams, steel, spray paint, blankets from from scans and glitches of the artist's pants, car headrests mounted on steel with videos of loose reenactments artist's dreams)
Videos TRT: 2:53 minutes, 6:16 minutes, 7:35 minutes
Run-on sentences, hyperspace, loop-to-loop, everything is everything...
Nocturnal Hologram, the more contained of the two sculptures in the show, functions as model for how we can think about and move through the layers of the larger installation, Enter-Face, a sprawling, expanding cacophony of connectivity which absorbs the adjacent architecture by default not to mention the lights from the nearby Sanguage space (which was more of a distraction than a positive addition) and beyond. Or maybe I was just dreaming all of it? Life is messy, personally and socially. I kept thinking about Sarah Sze and occasionally Jessica Stockholder as I wondered what the connective tissue really is, was, for this constellation of objects and artifacts. And then I began to think of other Grinnan works I had seen.
I enjoyed how these works seemed to recall, expand, and contract elements from Shipwreck, an earlier sculpture of Grinnan's that I viewed at the Armory Center for the Arts in January of 2012. See here for images. Cut photographic elements and other readymades/assisted readymades commingled with natural elements in such a way as to move a viewer around, through, and visually against surfaces though essentially enclosed space. In such orbits then, Enter-Face could be thought about as the other side of that coin, something blown apart, tenuous, and without boundaries. Now, with the element of time built into the work via video, it brings the work to another level of concern.
This latter consideration had me thinking about a chapter in Jeremy Gilbert-Rolfe's Beauty and the Contemporary Sublime titled "The Visible Post-Human in the Technological Sublime." In one passage, he discusses the displacement of dreams via film and cinema and how one can never see dreams in quite the same way after such technologies. The cut and paste of film-editing can move us through space, at least intellectually/visually the same way that dreams often jumps around and seem to often lack continuity. So, technology, especially of a communication kind, can mirror our behaviors and self-perceptions, perceptions about our sense of being. Whereas the cinematic experience via film is mostly one of passivity, the one of video/sculptural installation is not. Not only does Enter-Face (a sly slip of interface) force interactivity at least at the level of peripatetic viewing (moving about), what sculpture always does, but also by the inclusion of video, it complicates how we understand the passage of time and its effects because it's qualities are not those of frame and flutter but rather continuity and infinitude. Displacement continues to occur via cutting and also with the breaks between static, sculptural elements. A viewing experience is leveled between one of a photographic history (that is to say pictorial concern via light and time) and tactile materials, mostly choreographed as readymades.
Such a leveling of materials, while expanding technological perceptions within us, suggests that Grinnan's sculptures are actually complicating an alternate sense of being that involves a perception of time and space displacement as much within a personal narrative and identification (one can't help but view the small gnome-like creature nestled in the bed, positioned at the very center, as some version of artist self) as well as one beyond, a generalized human body. So, coterminous with what might be thought of as a universal body is one of mind as extended layers of consciousness. On this last note, I may be going out on a limb a bit, certainly a thin branch. If the work allows me to think about these things with some level of interest and concern, then its value, to me, is self-evident.