(30) sec line. 

Context: PNCA 6th floor. The animated arts, video and sound, and painting departments occupy this floor along with some student studios.

How does ‘form,’ point to experience?

How do you draw a line in space and time? How do you draw a line 30 seconds long?

This work calls out the common phenomenon when people measure distance with time. Odd, but also natural.

It’s especially true for travel. Portland to San Francisco is 1 hour 45 mins by flight. London to New York is 8 hours. Scientists measure the distance of planets and galaxies in terms of light-years. So we are all quite familiar with merging space and time. In fact, we are so used to measuring space with time that we rarely think about it. We forget that we do it.

The marriage of space and time is quite like the marriage of figure and ground. In fact, after painting dealt with the marriage of figure and ground it in a way naturally expanded into space and time. Artists like Robert Irwin, who started out as a painter essentially only did installations after the 1970s. Or that Ellsworth Kelly once proclaimed that his painting is really about time. When art becomes about space and time experienced, it also had to deal with subjectivity. This line reveals this subjectivity as well. What for me will be 30 seconds might not be for others. It used to be that with the Concorde, one can travel from London to New York in 3.5 hours. So ‘30 seconds’ is a subjective experience—my subjectivity in particular. Though perhaps it will be roughly equal for you as well. Perhaps there is value in reflecting on this subjectivity as a viewer. Either way, walking along the hallway you will be conscious of the line, and you will also be conscious of your time experienced, its linearity, its subjectivity, and that enables you to experience anything at all.

5 second diagonal.

Visual and context: White line following the handrails of a flight of stairs. On each end marked “5 sec diagonal.” PNCA six floor staircase, east end.

After Line I, I asked the question, if Line I was a line existing in 3 dimensions (height, length, time), but that its height stayed constant, then

How to draw a diagonal line, that engages all three dimension at once?

Second Squared.

Whereas the previous line works had been about going from ‘form’ to ‘percpetion,’ this work goes the other way, from ‘form’ to ‘formalized’ (ie. line to sqaure, length to area).

The linearity of time is now further developed into a formal abstraction - a square of time, or an area of time. Objectively (in the natural sciences), there is no such thing as an area of time. But here is this abstraction of it.

Does it work?
How do you experience an area of time?

In a sense, the absurdity of this work points to the absurdity of abstract formal strucutres such as the natural sciences and mathematics. At times, theory can be so far removed from reality.

Short time/long time.

The subjectivity of experience against objective measurement.

Incomplete Rectangle.

Formally a rectangle, but never experienced as such.