About Liquid State:
Jonathan Prince is in the process of developing an extended conversation around geometric forms morphed and softened through the applied will of the artist. This new series of stainless steel sculptures is a manipulation of straight line and flat plane that gives rise to unexpectedly organic objects, despite their distinct origins as cube or sphere. Each has been reduced from its initial, complete form, setting up an ironic tension in the work.
Prince recently commented: “A solitary object may be too limiting to fully investigate or communicate the complete story. I have been designing installations of object groupings that can fill a space and envelope the viewer in a type of environmental theatre -- one that allows the visual stimulus to extend past the solitary object and become more of a visceral experience. The installation allows for the echoing, and rhythm of expression, of an idea to its fullest extent: a visual poem, so to speak, beyond single object.”
In this extensive inquiry into form, and departure from form, he is challenging the ‘will’ of the steel. Fabricated by hand in heavy guage stainless steel, Prince’s objective is to bend the assumed line of cube or sphere to realize a new shape. The molten surfaces, where only the barest vestiges of ‘cube’ or ‘sphere’ remain, creates a new order of light reflections and thus an entirely different relationship between sculpture and environment. Light plays on these surfaces in a way that activates both the space and its surround. The “cube” is no longer dormant, but has the potential for a dynamic dialog with light and space.
The current work, Liquid State, is a natural extrapolation of the Torn Steel inquiry. In lieu of tearing, he is now disrupting the pure form through molding, forming, and contouring. The resulting undulating surfaces are counter-intuitive, given the inherent rigidity of the material – especially given the thickness of steel he employs.
In a recent essay, art critic Dorothy Joiner commented: “One of Plato’s favorite sayings is: God is always doing geometry. Classic forms bear historical and symbolic associations… yet it would seem that Prince has spoiled Plato’s divinely perfect geometric forms. He prefers a marriage of form and accident, or form and intentional morphing of form into something decidedly non-geometric.”
Jonathan Prince has exhibited his sculptures at the Cynthia-Reeves gallery in New York City; and has had a series of important, recent public art installations in New York, including TORN STEEL at the 590 Madison Avenue Sculpture Garden; an installation at the 535 Madison Avenue Sculpture Plaza; an exhibition of G2V at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza at the United Nations; and, an exhibition of two black granite sculptures on Pier 64 at Hudson River Park. One of these sculptures will travel for a two-year installation in San Diego, California; and an installation of his seminal work, Ellipsis, will be on view at the Whitehead Institute in Cambridge, Massachusetts, next year.
Jonathan Prince’s Vestigial Block is on permanent view at the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University in East Lansing. The monumentally scaled sculpture is one of three currently on display as part of the museum’s Sculpture Garden, surrounding the new Zaha Hadid designed museum.
For more information on the series and the artist’s practice, please call 212 714 0044, or visit the online gallery at: Cynthia-reeves.com.
ART MIAMI December 2-7, 2014 Booth A40.