2013.10.05 – 2013.10.06
Off to a Flying Start
Scotiabank Nuit Blanche, Toronto, ON
Curated by Ami Barak
Tortoise – Tower, Cube, Tunnel, 2013
The ancient Roman ‘tortoise formation’ was a siege technique using overlapping shields, giving protection from arrows and boiling oil, and serving as a platform to raise attackers. Inspired by the plated carapace of the land turtle, this military formation was a defensive architecture powered by humans.
Tortoise is a series of assemblage sculptures using standard picnic tables — an immediately recognizable representation of North American leisure culture — as building blocks to construct elaborate structures.
Supporting one another, showing their undersides and legs in an almost defensive manner against surrounding threats, the picnic tables of the Tortoise series form towering look-out and fort-like structures, defining and guarding their inner space. In this way, this symbol of leisure is turned inside out to create sculptures that resist their essential banality.