the Retrospective Self
(for a better view)
with allot of stuff in my studio to work with. Old stuff I had been
looking at for a while. New stuff accumulated more recently; just
for such possibilities as this project. And a fair amount of conceptual
All of it was at my beck and call!
And I wanted to do a three dimensional something without any of
the ancillary out of studio services or expenses.
The challenge: to compose something in an ordered
state out of my wealth of things stored and valued for their intrinsic
subject: movement in time and self criticism.
work began after another lengthy period of introspection concerning
my reasons for choosing my profession.
Or why it chose me?
And further more why had I continued in my pursuance of the profession
without tangible sales; for what seemed, now, to be an eternity.
It was bad enough in Missouri, Arkansas and Texas; but, now on the
edge again and in Russia.
Pressures of all sorts were being placed on me from all the various
angles one could imagine in the last two or three years.
I was inviting much of what I was being plied with due to my natural
pursuance of the interesting and personal. It’s my way of gambling.
But maybe some of it was just uncalled for tripe!
And I indeed felt the pressure.
this piece the central image is a miss caste bronze for another
The ‘originals’ intent was as a decorative gargoyle fountain head
for an old project I did for the Arkansas Arts Council. I bought
the “miss caste” for the price of the weight of the bronze and figured
I would use it as an element in something, or other, at some point.
It was not a terrible miss caste (some isolated porosity) and still
worthy of a fragment or detail.
The bronze gargoyle concept and I had a twenty five year relationship.
A long thought process.
The original had been a detail, a final detail,
for a year long public project situated in the crown of glory of
the Fayetteville, Arkansas Parks Department, Wilson City Park. The
original Gargoyle was ceramic and it was destroyed by vandals within
a few weeks of the projects public dedication in 1980. I promised
myself to replace it some day with cast bronze which is more or
less impervious to vandalism and molestation! (And now I have a
mold to recast the image if the vandals return or the Scottish Highland
Grenadiers decide to blow it up or pry it out of the stone dam it
should be apart of.)
Now all I have to do is get the maintenance crew for the parks
department to acquiesce to installing my donation. Seems I created
a pain in their cumulative sides due my insertion of an “art thing”
in the midst of there lawn mowing responsibilities.
the last twenty five years of my life have been eventful:
Fruitful, full of failure,
With promise and hope,
Without a chance,
With some small romance,
Trying to be good,
Giving in to desire,
Calling it quits,
The greatest realities,
Fulfillment of life,
always making stuff
“Life”, just full of all kinds of stuff-
of ,,, LOVE, maybe?
Ahhhh love-uhhh love?
type of love and its peculiarities relative to all the various views
on the subject-
for all it’s worth.
is, worth what?
it’s been intense!
hasn’t slowed down too much, yet.
unpredictable but still fluid.
I mean, like, where is it from?
What is it?
Why should it be me?
How do I do this?
Where will it go?
What for, “again”,
Some gauge of madness?
Intelligently contained, metaphors, symbols,
Vented and raised from the dead,
for an evening’s enjoyment at some art affair?
more likely to fill my days with challenge?
-A prayer for rational thought!
-Guidance in an imperfect world
-A mark in time
for all things, great and small
I decided to do this sculpture or installation out of all this stuff.
And, not buy anything (not much anyway).
Just out of my accumulated things.
It has been a challenge and “a real trip, man”!
And I knew it would be good from the beginning.
I just needed to start.
And it looks like a machine that should make many circles all at
one time. Screaming loudly as it spins.
But it sits there still in front of you.
Circumnavigating the retrospective self for a better view!
contradictions persist and
are the predictable reality. You never know what will show around
the next turn in the road! Just be wary of the many possibilities
ahead and prepare to stop and take in the view!
Williams, April 2006
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Frank Williams. All Rights Reserved.