Kevin Keul & Matt Gil
By creating layers referencing observed shifting formations of terrain over time, my work aims to draw attention to the ever evolving markings made to landscape through consumption and manufacturing. Taking inspiration from shapes sourced through satellite images and aerial photographs, my work is created through an abstract approach with materials rooted in construction such as steel, iron and plywood. Each shape is individually treated with paint, burnt with welding spots, etched into with raw lines, and at times coated with resin. Directly referencing recorded shapes from our current landscape, rusted metals and treated plywood pieces interplay with chalk paint in a more gestural and intuitive process merging color with form. Embedded into plywood, stark white panels securely hold the various formations within my newly created abstract landscapes. These select industrial materials allude to the transformation of raw material into new manufactured landscapes.
Observing these “man” made shapes intentionally from a distance through these digital tools allows me to explore not only the distance we may relate to the landscape as a society immersed in technology, but also questions the separation we may have to the actual dirt beneath our feet. From fracking and salt ponds, rectangular formations in farm fields, circular patterns resulting in irrigation fields, my work observes the new constructions of our landscape.
My sculpture-building process is like planning a trip, first I’m going here then I’m going there. If I get a bit lost I look at the drawing/map and I get back on track. You will find notes to myself in my sketchbooks detailing the process and steps I imagine that will work to make a successful new piece. Sometimes you have to be brave and trust that the effort will be worth it. Building sculptures has now become more and more entertaining for me with each and every piece, and I enjoy it when one piece generates many spin-offs. The time and place I grew up is reflected in my work. Each piece has called to me and jumped off the page of the sketchbook as if it was real and wanted to be in the world. All my sculptor heroes call out to me and say build this one, or build that one, or this piece needs more work and thought before you can make it. Or maybe draw this one again and see that it has soul. Build it and give it a soul so that it will survive and live beyond me.
For more information about Matt Gil, please visit his website.