Tuesday, May 18, 2010

David Prince

Saturday, May 22

Popps Packing 12138 St. Aubin, Hamtramck

Balloon Launch 7pm


David Prince is a sculptor, explorer, lumberjack, amateur scientist, community advocate, and inventor, creating artworks in a wide variety of materials and media. His subject matter frequents the topics of ecology, heroism, civic engagement, and impermanence. He received an MFA in Sculpture from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2006 and a BA from Colorado College in 2001. He currently lives and works in Los Angeles, CA and is a part-time nomad, living and working from his minivan-studio.

balloon launch : Alternative Energies

The Alternative Energies Project explores themes of resource and energy consumption and investigates creative engineering as a means of inspiring new approaches to how we expend and consume energy. This project encompasses a number of recent installations and performances including my most recent project, balloon launch.
balloon launch was initially inspired by my father's work as an astrophysicist - he would use enormous helium balloons to carry gamma-ray imaging payloads into the upper atmosphere. I’ve always been drawn to the imagery and gesture of releasing these balloons, and today I see it as a metaphor for the greater process of scientific inquiry. In my father’s work, the goal for the payloads was the retrieval of data in the form of gamma-rays. As an artist, I have grown most interested in the release of the balloon itself, as a metaphoric embodiment of the activity of questioning. For me the balloon launch has come to represent a venture into the unknown and the whimsical sense of hope that accompanies scientific investigation.
The balloons are constructed from hand-made, bio-plastic film, designed to be entirely biodegradable due to their composition of cornstarch and corn husk fibers. These images document the successful launch of one of my prototypes, using a combination of hot air and helium propulsion. I am currently developing a solar heating coil that will enable future balloons to rise solely by means of hot air.
My balloon launch project interprets the process of scientific inquiry as an activity based in wonder, and depicts discovery not as an endpoint, but as an opportunity for new openings. Through the launch of these balloons I hope to re-imagine the purpose of technology as a creative force and escape the paradigm that technology exists solely for the sake of commodity. I also aim to illustrate some of the tensions in relationships between human innovation, human consumption and our environmental predicament.

No comments:

Post a Comment