Monday, August 14, 2006

Another “Set Up”

I’m not gluing this assemblage together…at least not yet. I’m in a playful state of mind, and glue seems so final. Or maybe I’m not ready to commit? Then again, why should I? Part of the fun is continuing to see how it evolves. When I first put the GI Joe on the spring, his arms were twisted into a wonderful position. John called him “John Travolta” because he looked like he was executing a dance move from Saturday Night Fever. But then my Joe decided to change all on his own.
Somehow I like doing this more open-ended kind of set up better than containing it within a shadow box like Joseph Cornell did. He called them “poetic theatres or settings,” and believed they were the metamorphosis of a childhood pastime.

As an adult, you certainly have more control over your pastime, and you can take it much further. I’m thinking of Mary’s mammoth dollhouse right now. She has all sorts of fascinating objects inside like the hipbath she made from a shampoo cap, and a Victorian birdhouse constructed from pieces of a straw placemat. She even wired her dollhouse for electricity, something the average child wouldn’t be able to do.

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