In Perpetual Recombination, Recession Art’s featured artist Ian Trask presents a collection of sculptures that visualize an evolved interplay between concept, material and technique. The show’s title refers to the exchange of material between chromosomes during meiosis (cell division) and the resulting recombination of maternal and paternal DNA, a process that perpetuates genetic diversity of species and biodiversity of ecosystems. By analogy, this body of work represents nearly a decade of creative evolution. The combinatorial potential between the materials Trask collects and the processes he applies over time generate an elaborate diversity of forms all descended from a fundamental intuitive origin.
Trask’s sculptures transform materials of waste and commercial byproduct into refined aesthetic objects. He works with media as various as yarn, cardboard, plastic packaging, linen scraps, elastic webbing, wood molding, electrical wire and pornographic magazine clippings. In each case, an overlooked source of value is revealed in something wasted. While energies of sustainability and environmental activism are alive in Trask’s work, he comments, “It’s not about telling people what to do with their trash. It’s about allowing people to get lost in their own curiosity.” In many of these sculptures, the viewer will find a playful, sometimes mischievous invitation. Texture and tangibility are essential to the experience of these objects, and by provoking the impulse to explore, each piece rouses in the beholder the same spirit of curiosity, experimentation and play that occasioned their creation.
Ian Trask began sculpting with stolen forks at Bowdoin College where he earned his bachelor’s degree in Biology in 2005. He has since lived in Boston, central Massachusetts, Salt Lake City and New York. He has worked as a genetic researcher, a janitor, a gallery framer and now as a welder, all experiences which have deeply influenced his practice. In addition to participating in the Recession Art group shows No Money No Problems (2009) and Works Progress (2010), his sculpture has been exhibited throughout the Northeast and at the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival in Tennessee. He was the inaugural resident at The Invisible Dog art space in Brooklyn, NY and a Winter 2012 resident at the Wassaic Project in Wassaic, NY.
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