MACRO Museum, Rome
For his residency at Macro, Ishmael Randall Weeks plans to extend his exploration of spatial concepts and quotidian perspectives integrating thoughts on landscape, architecture, roof design and erosion as a way of entering a formal, conceptual and visual dialogue, centred on and around fragility and structure.
The foundation of Randall Weeks’ work is the alteration of found and recycled materials and environmental debris, often on site, and includes such source materials to create site-specific installations, sculptures, and works on paper that probe issues of urbanization, development, travel, mobility, and exchange in a globalized world. By creating works that take the visual form of functional objects while stripping them of their productivity, the artist addresses notions of labour and utility, forcing an examination of our understanding of culturally specific forms. Further, his use of abandoned objects and detritus as sculptural material forces an acknowledgement of the constituent elements, simultaneously exploiting and adapting their particular codes and associations. Ishmael uses his deep knowledge of modernist language (Modernism found some of its most fertile ground in South and Latin America) to define his strong sense of his hand-hewn aesthetic and of materials, which seems to stem as much from Robert Smithson’s vocabulary and the Minimalism of early Richard Serra and Robert Morris as anything else.