Berends, Andrew Albert
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My art work exploits a form of "personal pluralism" which enables me to work in a myriad of mediums as well as ideas. All the mediums and techniques surround a core of imagination which is part of a perpetual, ongoing dialogue among materials, processes and instinct. Each medium contains its own set of rules as well as parameters. I try to repeat the process to learn the physical aspect of the techniques, while at the same time letting my instincts and intuition dictate the final outcome. I am always trying to go out on a limb to challenge myself, trusting this intuition and applying a good, healthy dose of imagination. I treat art as the game that moves as I play. In other words, I never know what I'm looking for until I've found it. Each piece has a life of its own. I give it a chance to be born and then, after a passage of time, I objectively analyze and assimilate a visual feedback of information in order to understand its significance. This information becomes the catalyst for new work which will, in turn, lead to new discoveries. The pottery, for example, becomes sculpture which begins with a variation of a wheel-thrown vessel form. Like the sculptor, Peter Voulkos, I use the potter's wheel as a tool to make vessel-shapes which speak of my respect for the genesis of form through the. vessel, yet at the same time I want these pieces to stand up on their own integrity within the context of contemporary art. I am convinced that vessels can transcend the ominous barrier between art and craft if the visual dynamics of form and surface overpower the sense of utility. Ambiguous asymmetry plays a crucial role in providing impact while simultaneously raising questions that will hopefully lead to a personal investigation. I want my work to endure beyond the point of this initial impact, or beyond that point where confrontation occurs between object and viewer. I want questions to be raised about its content other than, "How is this made?" The two-dimensional work also raises questions about the very nature of rules. I purposely try to draw objects "wrong" because I was raised to believe that there was a "right" and "wrong" way of creating art. Likewise, I am beginning to realize the potential of art as a potent social weapon, not just a decorative icon. Because the world is in a state of ultra-decay, glowing more radioactive every day, and since there are more than enough people painting pretty pictures already painted, I want my art to address issues which are crucial for the survival of the planet. I am not saying I have any concrete answers or solutions, but hopefully my art makes people think about their own lives and how perhaps they, too, can start to address certain world issues instead of ignoring them through fear.