Categories
Competition Entries Guy Gardner Jason Johnson JP Hammill Public Art SSHRC Uncategorized

Biomorph

Date: 2017
Client: Edmonton Arts Council
Principal Investigator(s): Jason S. Johnson, Guy Gardner
Research Assistant: JP Hammill
Funding Agencies: SSHRC
Budget: N/A
Status: Proposal

We approach this work through the lens of capturing motion. Transit stations are places of constant motion and change in ways that are highly visible to the observer. We propose a project that captures this sense of motion and uses its physical characteristics as a way to make that motion felt on the site. The built environment, although it appears static, is in a constant state of movement as it shifts to accommodate fluctuating temperatures, wind and precipitation. This piece accepts these changes and in fact uses them to create a constantly shifting presence in the urban landscape.

Biormorph abstracts and embeds the signatures of the site users (human and non-human) into the surface of the canopy. As a proposal for the Muttart stop of Edmonton’s new Valley Ridge LRT line, its reference to vaguely human and animal forms in motion visually activates the canopy of the building. The pattern compresses and overlays the built up index of the activities and movement patterns of the site and functions as fossil of its history. Seasonal precipitation in the form of rain and snow and the changing light qualities of the Alberta landscape interact with the piece to form new patterns readings of the work. The changing aspects of the piece also reference the plant collections of the Muttart, which are always in states of change.

Categories
Alex Wilton Competition Entries Guy Gardner Jason Johnson Matthew Parker Public Art SSHRC Uncategorized

Columnulous

Date: 2016
Client: cSpace King Edward
Principal Investigator: Jason S. Johnson
Research Assistants/ Project Team: Guy Gardner,
Matthew Parker, Alex Wilton
Funding Agencies: SSHRC
Status: Proposal

“Columnulous” is a series of vertical monuments resembling cloud formations, acting as a threshold for entry to the public plaza at the south entrance of the building. Each column is formed in precast concrete and is intended to weather in place. Details from the original 1912 architectural drawings of the sandstone building were sampled and projected onto masses using digital software. By referencing instances from the façade which could be seen from the locations where the columns were placed, the goal was to subconsciously and indirectly draw the viewers’ attention to the patterns contained within the building elevation.

The projected lines were used as restraints as the masses were inflated using a physics engine. The process of inflation could be seen as a way of obscuring or “clouding” these details, so that the viewer could feel free to overlay their own interpretations of the form, in the same way that we project images onto clouds. Several iterations were developed to explore the extent to which the geometries and patterns should be obscured in order to allow for a range of associations.

The experience of interacting with these intentionally ambiguous forms encourages a similar procedure of projecting meaning onto the work. The objects can be read a number of ways at the same time. They resemble both soft, fluid forms, and rigid concrete monoliths. They operate in series and as single sculptural instances. The inscribed patterns reference the adjacent building, but are obscured.