Use of Technology

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A number of  Tim Hawkinson’s sculptures are difficult to relate to past eras due to the incorporation of technology in his work. “Tim Hawkinson’s work combines low-tech aesthetics with high-tech concepts. “The interconnectedness of the pieces (created between 1986 and 2004) in the retrospective of his work at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) were literally manifest in the trains of wires and extension cords that ran along the ceiling of the museum’s galleries. They changed color and thickness, even becoming artworks themselves (Knot [1991], Shorts [1993] and Vessel [1994]), as they linked the mechanized works together throughout the space.” A few examples of works that use technology as a main element are Signature Chair (see fig. 4), which is a school desk that signs his name over and over again, Drip (see fig. 5), which used mechanical components to pump water trough twisted polyethylene sheets, and Emoter (see fig. 6), which is a large individually pieced self portrait of the artist face and is moved around be components attached to a monitor. “How the body is transformed, how it occupies space and how it can be made robotic is the subject of many of Hawkinson’s most successful works. He manipulates conventional ways of representing the body, such as drawing, painting, sculpture and photography, by adding a technological twist.”

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