Frame 61

Holly Wilson

Frame 61
Holly Wilson

Background/education: I am a new media installation sculpture artist from Columbus, OH. Currently, I live and work in Syracuse, NY , co-directing a local gallery called Apostrophe’ S. My art work adheres to site specific environments and questions banality of the everyday. My practice and fascination with sculpture and art began when I was attending art school at Pratt Munson-Williams-Proctor Institute in Utica, NY.

It was exciting to discover that art could be combinations of videos, leftover trash, raw materials... whatever the artist decided to use to convey a message. I continued my education at Syracuse University and received my BFA in sculpture from in May 2015. Since May I have been developing my practice and working in the studio on a new body of work as well as traveling globally to create site specific installations. 

Functional/dysfunctional objects: The dysfunctional look in the work is intentional, I want the sculptures to anthropomorphize instances of past technology and possessions mutated into an offspring that has been reborn to tantalize modern digitalized lifestyle. The structures are constantly trying to provide even though they are dying. I am interested in the advancement of media, machines, communication and ‘do it all’ appliances re-invented from the past. Inanimate objects have been repurposed to perform with modes of bluetooth, wifi, and data storing peoples behavior into data bases. We are constantly being recorded and we are also obsessed with sharing it. The work as a whole personifies concrete memories from the past re-conglomerated to evoke epiphanies of self compared to the rest of the word and personal impact/involvement. 

Obsolete machines/abandoned dwellings: I find it important to associate a feeling of bound tension and clutter within my sculptures, when creating them part of the process is figuring out how to make it stand. Made from dilapidated scrap I like them to give off a sense of something left behind and unnoticed. My site specific installations transport the audience into an environment of our conditioned reality on a heightened level through a combination of video and three dimensional collage of objects I make. The materials and most paint I use are collected from estate sales and flea markets, often discarded from the depths of peoples garages and basements. Many of the appliances I find still work, each part constructed with care - I like the idea of using a person's past home projects activating my machines to. Eventually I want my machines to have certain moving parts that dysfunctionally perform routine tasks - similar to the domestic apartment sets for the Terry Gilliam film, Brazil. 

The viewer: The sculptures elicit one to question what happens when mechanization makes life too comfortable. With the work I aim to disarm the tune plush wavelengths controlled by paid people hidden behind the screen.

They will eventually multiply into a cluttered installation transcending the viewer’s sense of reality into a hyper super sensitive active level, as well as entice a reassessment of pre-cultivated virtue back into the world. 

Process/inspiration: My process begins by finding a surplus of left behind everyday appliances and materials. Sometimes one weird object will spark the idea for the whole sculpture. I am inspired by the quality and character of vintage objects from the past. I like that objects were built to be repaired and not replaced back then. I am concerned with how fast and entwined people are with the instant access to touch enabled data and the internet. The instantaneity of how fast one can find information and products has pros and cons. I am not anti-internet but, I feel it can put up a distracted false barrier to many people and children. It keeps one in check with the upkeep required to be ‘happy’ in this world and additionally manages to tantalize personal desires. I am drawn in by the eventual Apocalypse and the incident of man-made technology taking over or brainwashing the population. Cataclysms that deemed impossible as a kid seem more likely every year. 

Studio/routine: I am really lucky to live right above my art studio. I wake up, drink a lot of coffee, go downstairs and start working. I often do not completely know what a sculpture will look like from the beginning - I use a reactive process when I work and I listen to a lot of loud unconventional music. Certain objects will get attached to each other and then start by pouring paint all over it. While that dries I will go into my basement and locate more appliances - I keep a hefty collection of found materials and objects downstairs and collect more every week. My studio is kind of small and cluttered but it gets the job done. I have acquired a lot of really cool tools already and I have a nice basement I can hoard stuff in. There is also a gallery space my friend and I designed on the other side of the shop wall. I like to take my works in progress out there to really see what they look like with the crisp white background. 

Titles: Sometimes the sculptures are named after personal experience as well as descriptions of their inclined actions and attitudes. 

Influences: My biggest art influences are Edward Kienholz, Pipilotti Rist, Tim Hawkinson, Shih Chieh Huang, and Diana Alhadid. 

Future/shows: I have a solo exhibition on June 5th called ‘Vapid Conventionalities’ at 934 Gallery in Columbus, Oh. The show will exhibit the new body of work I have been working on this year. My piece, ‘Surpassed By Viable Science (Machine #2) will be part of the Mint Museum’ 80 X 80 exhibition in Charlotte, North Carolina June 10th-25th. 

Artist website

Publishing date of this interview 29/04/16