Date of Submission

Spring 2011

Academic Program

Studio Arts


Julianne Swartz

Abstract/Artist's Statement

- I /\/ |\ / X

The view through the window is of passing strangers walking along the street. A small area around the window is not sealed; a draft of air penetrates and light from this window passes slowly along the wall creating a shape. A conversation can be heard from the other side of the wall.

Conceptions of security and stability are assumed in architecture. Walls intersect to create this expected encompassing protection. The sculptural walls of this work instead balance into one another held up at a point before collapse. Within, you are at once both filling the void of the space and being contained by it. The architecture defines the body. Its shadows and reflections perform through out the structure.

What determines the point in which a space becomes private? Where does this transition occur between private and public and can that be constructed as its own architectural space?

I found that there is an intermediate in this distinction. A space in-between the interior and exterior in which both are activated. The private interiors behind glass windows are publicly displayed, from the interior you can look out to the streets below.

When you sit on a balcony is this an interior of architecture or exterior? How much of the body must be enclosed to be considered inside a space? Materials of transparency or fragility hold tension between the private and public.

The intermediate between the private and public was examined at the moment of ambiguity in distinguishing between the two. This I generalized and referred to as a wall. The wall is a singular object but is prescribed in two conflicting spaces. There is a liminal void of the wall that divides the two space of interior-exterior and occupies its own space. The wall is in its essence both exterior and interior.

The walls material and function confronts the space on its other side. As material, light plays on a building and creates objects. The wall does not protect from all environmental influences. Sounds enter as does wind. These walls are bodily as well. A wound on ones hand, is at the same time on the exterior and interior of the body.

From the interior protection of architecture you are entertained by watching a public. The walls act much like cinema screens to frame the views or sounds. The architecture has transgressed into theatre. The viewer is most likely being watched. The architectural space separates the audience and players but these are shifting roles.

The sculpture is a deconstruction of an architecture. It is not a specific home but rather it is the materials of the walls reconsidered. The intersecting walls are both screens and speakers for the views of intermediate moments. Sounds come from within the walls and projections reflect through the sculptural walls and are then fragmented along the walls of the gallery. A hornet tries to fly through a clear glass, a surveillance camera, murmurs of a conversation overheard, the inside of a kiss, an elevator door and rain falls. Its structure is destabilized by the projections as the materials are fractured in the space.

Here architecture becomes an abstracted form. The void between the walls is transitional. Architecture with out function occupies this transition as sculpture. The challenge of the break down between private and public is their inherent connection to one another, much like the relation between the body and architecture, the two terms must co-exist.

Distribution Options

Access restricted to On-Campus only

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 License

This work is protected by a Creative Commons license. Any use not permitted under that license is prohibited.

Bard Off-campus Download

Bard College faculty, staff, and students can login from off-campus by clicking on the Off-campus Download button and entering their Bard username and password.