PARADOX PILE (2023-24)

Paradox Pile is my first body of tangible sculptures, made after thirty-five years producing ephemeral media centric performances and installations. (I started my career as a sculptor when I was in my twenties). I bought a 3D printer during the pandemic. Two years later, I finished this first series. These sculptures started at table-top scale, to now reach towards the ceiling. They are tall and slim and sway precariously.

The earlier sculptures, see further below, were reminiscent of trophies, but  surreal.  I imagine them as esoteric plastic relics, seen from a distant future. The new 2024 works have evolved, their gestalt is that of sci-fi architectural towers. They are totems, but also relate to musical scores - a semi-abstract vertical sign language.    

The work overall reflects on technology as  human ambition: towards expansion, towards reaching higher and higher, towards producing and building more and grander. No matter the environmental or societal damage. We are manic builders. We must build!

The sculptures begin with a small footprint, and are improvised from there.  They are a projection of obsession, ingenuity, attention deficit disorder, playfulness even, and more so, hubris. They are built without any sense of caution or pragmatic restraint. They do manage to keep standing, but don't withstand a shove or push. They are delicate balancing acts, on the verge of going out of perfect alignment, ready to fall, fail and disintegrate. PARADOX PILE is modular, with individual sections held together with magnets and occasional joints, an expression of their provisional nature.

PARADOX PILE, in name, is an expression of each sculpture's ephemerality and hybrid aesthetic. Their imbalance is designed in with great intention, imbuing them with the aura of  irregularity and the haphazard. Made from reels of thermo plastic thread, these 3D printed works are bound to break and to degrade. They will change over time and require maintenance. In that, they are necessarily participatory. Repairs are, in fact, a part of my building process. During their design and construction, parts break, some over and over again. But in the end, just like in life, reparation augments them, adding detail for sure, but also imbuing the wisdom of age and of having 'lived'.

2024 - Gen2

2023 - Gen1

© Kurt Hentschläger 2022