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Sculpture and Expanded Media: The Material Condition of an Immaterial State

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(For more info see dropdown menu under SculptureX 2019)

The SculptureX 2019 Symposium explores ideas pertinent to contemporary sculpture through the multivalent state of materiality. “Materiality” is a loaded term within the space of sculpture.  Historically, we’ve used it to specify our medium and media, but over the last six decades the field  has expanded in such a way that the idea of materiality has been redefined and moved beyond the traditional boundaries of “medium”. In the vernacular, “material” and “medium” continue to speak about the built, the made, and the artist’s interaction between the hand and material.  The contemporary meaning of materiality, however, overlays the space of sculpture and now expands the role of “medium” by binding it to an ontology of things, objects, interactive conditions, and   ephemeral states mediated by layered technologies.


Materiality offers inexhaustible avenues of exploration into the immaterial creating shifting states that slip from materializing to dematerializing and back again. The results:  a disciplinary discourse that encompasses the use of materials of every quality and quantity, extending our understanding of the physical,  and opening sculpture to the immersive, performative, virtual, generative, environmental, and social.

SculptureX (i.e. sculpture exchange) is a teaching and networking resource aimed at promoting collaboration among art teaching institutions within the region and to increase appreciation of  visual arts programs of sculpture in its broadest meaning. Operating under the nexus of the Sculpture Center in Cleveland, the fundamental goal of SculptureX is to encourage and foster the intellectual pursuit of compassionate thinking, while discovering new forms and definitions of visual communication and understanding.

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