What Mr. Barnes says about his work,
TROUBLED BLAKK, 19” x 5” x 7”, Painted Wood Construction
WHITNESS, 19” x 5.5” x 6”, Painted Wood Construction
MEAT THE FUTURE, 19” x 6” x 7”, Painted Wood Construction
BRIDGE CITY, 20” x 7” x 9”, Painted Wood Construction
Most of my sculptural work focuses on the aftermath of disasters, and all of the colors and shapes of a disaster-affected reality. Disasters such as Hurricane Katrina in particular, which I experienced as an evacuee, as well as the current state of expanding war and a troubled economy, which we are all experiencing. I coined the term “disaster aesthetics” to describe what I’m capturing in my work. I also attempt to create a bridge between the tragic and the beautiful. I sum up the totality of these experiences symbolically in the shape of a sinking upturned boat, merged with a ragged disaster –affected house. I use boats metaphorically to represent personal circumstances, and within the hull of these boats are artifacts from the disaster experience that codify the meanings of that particular moment. I often use text-based markings throughout the vessels as “tags.” The vessels are designed to be small scale, yet monumental, the smallness relates directly to the individual and their feelings of isolation and vulnerability, the monumental aspects relate to the scope and range of the problems addressed. These sculptures were all featured in the Prospect.1 U.S. Biennial, New Orleans.
In addition Barnes will also give a more formal talk at the Lauren Rogers Museum of Art during their African American Art Symposium, beginning at 1:00 PM up in Laurel on Thursday February 23rd.
For information at the USM event call 610-266-4972
For more information about the Laren Rogers Event call 601-649-6374