Casey Curran – Curiously insect-like Sculptures

Casey Curran, maker of weird and strangely endearing kinetic art.

I stumbled upon the work of Casey Curran the other day, as a result of a friend ( a real one, not a Facebook one) posting one of his videos on their Facebook page, and was truly taken with his work.

As you will see in the following videos, his “machines” have a curious delicacy  about them, and on first glance seem to be alive, but very quickly that feeling fades away and one becomes aware that one is looking at an incredibly delicate machine, one that replicates in its own way the vastly speeded up life cycle of a plant.

This first video from his website shows very well what it is I mean as I think you will agree once you have seen it.

I am not sure if the music is simply a sound track for the video or if you actually hear music when the piece is being played in a gallery.  However that may be, I think this video demonstrates very well the work of this extraordinary artist.   The machinery that makes it happen is almost as much fun as the art work itself – though to be honest, I rather assume that it should be seen as a whole, and no separation between the moving, and the machinery that drives the movement.

As it is all made from bits of twisted metal wire, this obviously makes it move in a slightly jerky fashion, but I don’t find this any sort of a problem in fact, for me it merely strengthens the feeling that it is alive – though I expect this feeling is made stronger by seeing the work on a video rather than in the flesh as it were – lends it a sort of stuttery time exposure effect that we are used to seeing on TV documentaries.

That last one was worked by some sort of motor, but a lot of his works are simply provided with a hand crank, also made from relatively thin wire – not sure how that would bear up under over enthusiastic use – which gives the machine a very jerky movement, as you can see in the video below. Continue reading “Casey Curran – Curiously insect-like Sculptures”

The Carved Wall – A Bit Kitsch, But Still Good

The Wall, which someone has mentioned to Lotty in the shower at the previous night’s camp site as being a place we simply should not miss visiting if we happened to go past it.

As we were chugging along the road from Hobart to the west coast, we went past a place called Derwent River Bridge, and saw a sign for something called The Wall, which someone has mentioned to Lotty in the shower at the previous night’s camp site as being a place we simply should not miss visiting if we happened to go past it.

So, being obedient souls, we turned in and found a parking place in front of a long blank wooden building, with an entrance at one end.

So in we went, to be received by a very verbose and friendly guy who told us everything we could possibly wish to know about what was about to be revealed unto us inside this rather beautiful wooden building.

What it was is an enormous carved wall of pine wood panels about 2 meters tall and about  100 meters (in 2 sections of 50 meters each)  long.  The whole thing was carved in relief and more or less told the story of that part of Tasmania, with excursions into making points about the wildlife that still lived there, or had become extinct owing to the activities of the white colonists.

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Whilst generally such totally realistic wood carving is absolutely not my thing, this has been done with such consummate skill that I was overcome with awe at the guy’s work. The pictures here will give you an idea of the quality of his work.

The artist who is still busy carving this monstrous art work, is still a relatively young man, about 38 years old, and has been doing this for the last 10 years at every free moment he has from his work.

Almost as impressive as his carving is the building that he has caused to be created to house his work.   Totally made of wood, and finished with a totally unbelievable attention to detail it is one of the most beautiful and warm buildings I have ever seen.

So, should you ever find yourself in this part of Tassie, it is worth a visit and the $13 entry fee to see his work.

Here is a link to his website so you can find out more about this extraordinary work.