RADIO TRANSMISSION CONTRAPTIONS
UNDERGROUND RADIO GIBRALTAR, 2008
Ceramic, steel, acrylic paint, Fiberglas, plinth
Sculpture: 35 x 8 x 49” / 88.9 x 20.3 x 124.5cm, Plinth: 11 x 10 x 36” / 27.9 x 25.4 x 91.4cm
RADIO TRANSMISSION CONTRAPTIONS
September 4 - October 4, 2008
…The razor blade is tacked down with a wire taped to it and going to one side of the coil and on to the aerial. The other side of the coil goes to the ground and to one side of the headset. From the other side of the headset a wire goes to the safety pin, which is driven into some wood at one end so the pin may be turned. Then the free end of the pin is moved across the rusty areas part of the Marlin blade, and in that way you can find your station. Reception was very good and at night we could get several stations, including Bebop from Belgium and Berlin Sally…
To inaugurate the 2008-2009 season, this Fall Casey Kaplan is pleased to announce Nathan Carter’s fourth solo exhibition, RADIO TRANSMISSION CONTRAPTIONS. Carter’s two-dimensional and sculptural objects are improvised devices that suggest precarious usefulness as communication instruments or diagrams of “info way” networks. Combining the process of making things by hand and the seemingly irrational activity of play, the artworks burst with lyrical and expressive energy.
Lines, objects, symbols, colors, geometric and organic shapes are at once expressive gestures and reflections of multi-layered psychogeographic landscapes buzzing with visual expressions of audio and non-verbal communication signals.
In collaboration with Cerámica Suro, an industrial ceramics and fine art studio in Tlaquepaque Jalisco, Mexico, Carter has introduced ceramic and glass as new mediums to his practice. He presents a major body of work that demonstrates his willingness to experiment with new materials and most importantly investigate unfamiliar working environments in his approach to art making.
RADIO TRANSMISSION CONTRAPTIONS begins with a series of small-scale, ceramic and wire sculptures. They are similar in size to portable two-way radio sets but could also be seen as architectural forms – miniaturized radio stations transmitting and receiving radio waves, coded SMS messages, heavy musical broadcasts and ominous weather reports. In Gallery II, a large, wall-based sculpture of colorful ceramic disks on rotating arms titled, THIS ONE GOES OUT ACROSS THE SEMAPHORE SPECTRUM, simultaneously takes form as a double solar system model or an antiquated signal device used to communicate turbulent atmospheric conditions to pilots in air or at sea. Also included are new paper collage drawings, a cantilevered object titled, HIGH VISIBILITY WEATHER RADIO AIRSHIP WITH REFLECTOR PLUMAGE AND ALL MOD CONS, and the large-scale suspended painted blue steel drawing, CALLING FOUR TOWERS SIGNAL DRIFTING WITH NO FIXED PURPOSE. In Gallery III, four vibrant steel and glass chandeliers act as suspended illuminated emergency mayday beacons, titled: ONE IF BY LAND, TWO IF BY SEA, THREE FOR TEA, FOUR ON THE FLOOR.
Nathan Carter recently had his first US solo museum debut at Artpace, San Antonio, Texas in October of 2007. Also in 2007, the artist had his first European solo museum exhibition at Domus Artium 2002, Salamanca, Spain, and was featured in “Level 5: The View from Here: Acquisitions since 2000,” Tate Modern, London, England in 2006. Other recent solo exhibitions include, “RADIO THREE ON THE TREE IN THE LIGHT OF THE DARK BLACK NIGHT,” Esther Schipper, Berlin, Germany.