Magnificent ancient olive trees are posed against mammoth, no longer functional industrial structures. The veracity of photo-based laser transfer images layered with fluid, calligraphic drawing, and relief collaged elements reveal our 21st Century’s participation in a precarious process of transience and change.
Virulent growth strangles the remains of the ancient temples of Ankgor, evoking questions about our 21st Century’s cultural hubris in the face of the potential of global warming. Cast-off industrial and military scrap emerges newly formed and unpredictably assembled as metaphoric plants.
Linda Cunningham transforms discarded found materials such as structural fragments, a kind of “Urban Mining,” and preserves the qualities of found materials with the material history inscribed in their surface. The tactile sensibility of her work comes from her interest in the qualities of materials, observed or found. In the wall-constructions she fuses relief elements, such as exposed structural fragments or sand-cast bronze, shaped by the physical process of the pour. These installations are concerned with time, transience and contradictions.
In these images of rapidly disappearing Hudson River structures the veracity of photo-based transfers of architectural and structural remnants are fused with collage, drawing and discarded materials such as broken dry wall. The work is concerned with time, change, and construct layered images of architectural change as a precariously ordered balance on the edge of entropy.
Drawing and collaged images of resonant historic structures are meshed with found materials. Text is sometimes used as a structural and iconographic element constructing and deconstructing layered images. "The ruptures of history and accumulated catastrophes have made the ruin a witness, not to the past but a paradigm of the present."
Using images from the street, 19th C land-marked architecture and found materials, this work exposes contradictions inherent in recent history, time and change. 21st C signage, Bronx poetry and rubbings from plaques merge with photo transfers and drawing posing the past against the restored, regenerated present.
These installations work with the multi-layered content of "place", reaching beyond the aesthetics of space. They are concerned with time, transience and contradictions and are distinguished by the qualities of found materials with a material history inscribed in their surface. Cunningham’s sculptural process is a form of "urban mining," transforming found materials such as exposed structural fragments, and twisted steel beams with layered significance and aesthetic function. Even the bronze forms were cast in her studio from former military scrap, and shaped by the physical processes of the pour.
Layers of torn edges and severed forms distinguish Linda Cunningham’s large format drawing/ constructions. The tactile sensibility of her work comes from her interest in the qualities of materials, observed or found. She transforms found materials, a kind of “Urban Mining,” and preserves the qualities of found materials with the material history inscribed in their surface. In the wall-constructions she fuses relief elements, such as exposed structural fragments or sand-cast bronze, shaped by the physical process of the pour. Even the bronze forms she casts from military surplus scrap.
Cunningham’s work is concerned with time, transience and contradictions, and she gravitates to architectural and structural remnants of current and previously existing cultures. She often poses the veracity of the photo-based transferred images against interpretive, fluid calligraphic drawing line and form. With sensually gripping form she tempts the viewer to take in sometimes discomforting, underlying content. Discarded materials such as twisted steel beams & unraveling copper cable from the former German border become metaphors for the transience of 21st C development.
“Neither site nor material have shed their past, but here they emerge triumphant, bearing their industrial scars and creating a new, decidedly-urban, aesthetic”…“History is embedded in their composition, giving depth of meaning to the spiraling, rising arcs which emerge”….. The biomorphic forms of Cunningham’s sculptures recall both a long-forgotten natural past and the very concrete nature of obliterated man-made structures.”
Sculpture Magazine, July/August 2011
305 E 140th St.
Bronx, NY 10454