Artist: K.R.M. Mooney
Venue: David Dale Gallery, Glasgow
Exhibition Title: Ores
Date: September 21 – October 26, 2019
Images courtesy of David Dale Gallery, Glasgow
Occupying intermediary positions that vary in scale, Mooney’s sculptures distill both observable and imperceptible properties through placement directly on the floor, overhead, or in passageways. Inheriting architectural details such as the conditions of light or a site’s neighbouring morphologies, each project is a means to revise how attention is paid to the affective, embodied and relational aspects of site and space.
The exhibition of new work inhabits the ground floor gallery and adjoining courtyard of the building. Named after Scottish industrialist David Dale, the building now serves as a multi-use contemporary art space. Moving between abstraction and site-generated forms, the three works in the exhibition Ores emerge jointly through their formal properties, whereby entangled notions of value and resource production surface in relation to this history. With this focus, the work titled Plates (xi) adopts a recursive expression, recasting industrialism as a precursor to Minimalism and its serial modalities.
Comprised of multiple silver-plated industrial forms, Plates (xi) is installed directly on the floor in a sequential logic. Silver is densified slowly over steel conduit, by which the form’s tonal shifting pursues active conditions of viewing that engages the context and definition of space. Accounting for and diffusing the available light within the gallery space, the forms are reflexive of the material conditions of their production and display. Plates (xi) as a temporal register both senses and generates information, indexed through the material life of silver as a storied surface; by way of its open pores, its circulation and accreted historical associations.
Requiring the structural manoeuver for building up, Detrition (i)’s installation conjoins the gallery’s series of vertical steel columns. Through its attachment and scale, the work necessitates the spatial behaviour of the gallery by dwelling on its very structure. Comprised of a specialised jeweler’s vise, Detrition (i) as a sculptural object links the elementary definition of architecture itself as a corporeal extension. It’s oxide surface foregrounds its shifting contours, positing abstraction and the affective facets of form alongside its instrumental efforts.
Installed on the wall of the gallery is Site Value (i), developed from an open source computer program. The work consists of a field recording inverted as image. Initially formulated to depict sound frequency over the coordinates of intensity and time, its translated effect is articulated through very fine points that densify in certain areas. Site Value (i) tests the dynamics between works and their imagined relations, acting as a retraction and compression of physical form in the exhibition Ores and its given dimensionality.
A room, for example the gallery, is a delineated space. A space immured by a construction of brick, glass, steel, concrete, drywall, timber and various other materials. Currently deliberately finished in a neutral manner so its construction recedes to the background. The three physical dimensions of this room, now conceptually removed from its surroundings, creates a specific volume. The 331m3 volume of this room is not displaced when objects or people enter the room, no matter the number or scale of things, it is only altered temporarily. In fact, this volume was here before it was enclosed in this manner 70 years ago, though looking and constituted differently, with no reason to consider it as distinct to any other wider measurement of space. This volume, and its frame, have had many different appearances. It’s current sparseness on the one hand obscuring this volume, while simultaneously drawing attention to it.
This volume could be described as having three interdependent categories of constituent elements: semi-permanent and long-term; temporary and short-term; cumulative and compounding. The parameters, relationships and definitions of the categories and elements can be left open to interpretation. The various elements I’m referring to as constituting the volume are, among others: Gasses and particles, light, sound, inorganic objects, organic objects, economic conditions, structural movement, people, time, energy, memory, moisture, thought and future potential.
These elements make up a durational volume of the space, fitting into one or more of the categories I mentioned, though are also interconnected, dependent and influencing upon each other – as well as other elements I’ve omitted. Various gasses can cause oxides within certain inorganic objects in the space, which are present depending on economic conditions, people and thoughts. These objects can reflect light, depict sound, absorb moisture and invoke memory. Certain elements compound then dissipate, others are regular and recurring – varying in intervals and intensity. There is no way to observe this totality, it cannot be captured, only experienced subjectively in a series of presents. It can be referred to and considered however, brought into focus by a material undergoing transformation. By a form alluding to a historical context or structure, invoking a feeling while sited in a particular volume. It can take a small number of reference points located within the volume to begin to make it visible, allowing each element to speak for itself. The elements, almost infinitely divisible within the families referred to, within their individual conversations contribute to a narrative that can hint at a totality. An absolute of this particular 331m3, within a larger volume.