|"Collapse" 39" x 38" found paper, charcoal, pastel, graphite, ink, watercolor|
|"Collapse III" found paper, charcoal, pastel, graphite, ink, watercolor|
|"Collapse VI" found paper, charcoal, pastel, graphite|
|"Collapse VIII" 40" x 26" found paper, charcoal, pastel, graphite|
|"Abandoned (The William Livingstone Mansion in Detroit’s Brush Park)" 30" x 22" collage, oil, colored pencil, pastel, charcoal, graphite on paper|
I posted Seth Clark's series of abandoned buildings back in April of 2010. He's moved on slightly, from abandoned buildings in the process of decay, to structures in a state of total collapse (the original series was titled "Abandoned", the new series is titled "Collapse" - makes sense). The new collapse series moves his work a step further in the direction of chaos and abstraction. Entropy. That's a good word to throw in here. Order takes effort. Disorder comes oh so naturally. For all of our very real and profound impact upon the planet, our attempts to create objects of lasting value are often far more short-lived than we imagine them. Our buildings, especially houses, are a case in point. They are meant to provide shelter for a lifetime or more. But any home owner can tell you that maintenance is a bitch. A home left alone for a few years soon becomes irreparable. Homes are potent symbols of our sense of security and comfort. To see them in ruins is powerful reminder of the fragility of our circumstances; a Momento Mori ("remember you are mortal") not just for ourselves, but for our families, even our way of life. And yet ruins fascinate us. They contain within them their own profound eloquence and aesthetic. Seth Clark's technique of collage, found material and mixed media is perfectly suited to capture that aesthetic.
I'm pleased to see that his work was included in the most recent issue of New American Paintings (#98) and a little chuffed to be able to say I saw it coming.
To see more with wonderful detail shots go to his website: http://sethsclark.com