In this assignment you will be working with time and movement. By combining found and constructed elements, you will create a sculpture that has actual moving parts. The sculpture can be powered by any of a number or means, both electrical and non; wind, gravity, tension or human as well as by any means of motor or appliance.
Movement can imply many things, life, time, progress, tension, meditation and repetition. It can be fast or slow, repetitive or explosive. Each of these kinds of movement can lead the viewer in any number of directions. A flapping piece of paper can bring to mind a bird in flight, a tapping rod can imply restlessness, etc. As the artist, you must develop a mechanism that conveys a specific feeling or mood. Combine the mechanism carefully with other elements and materials, and a new experience will emerge.
You will start with a found mechanism or motor and expand on it. Some possibilities include, but are not limited to:
Toys: remote controlled cars, windup toys, battery powered robots or any thing that moves on its own.
Appliances: Fans, rotisserie motors, record players, drill, etc.
Other: hand powered- pencil sharpener, salad spinner,
Wind powered- kites, balloons
Places to look for things- thrift stores, Goodwill, dollar stores, your parent’s basement or attic, Facebook marketplace, craigslist
Other materials you might consider: garbage bags, string, springs, Styrofoam (reclaimed or blue wall board), cardboard, paper, marbles.
Think about all the things movement can imply, and let the movement define what the work is “about”. The responsibility for finding materials is on you, the more invest at the start of the project, the more you will have to work with later. The piece can be indoor or outdoor, single unit or installation, but you must be able to store it in your space when not in class.
“In 1913,” recalled Marcel Duchamp, “I had the happy idea to fasten a bicycle wheel to a kitchen stool and watch it turn.”1 The result, Bicycle Wheel, is the first of Duchamp’s Readymades—objects (sometimes manufactured or mass-produced) selected by the artist and designated as art. Most of Duchamp’s Readymades were individual objects that he repositioned or signed and called art, but Bicycle Wheel is what he called an “assisted Readymade,” made by combining more than one utilitarian item to form a work of art.