Brad Allen
Relocating, even within a country, brings with it a sense of displacement and wonderment. To be in a new place often makes one aware of the very qualities of place. A sense of home can become quite liquid, even ephemeral. The work presented explores various qualities of place by simultaneously displacing the viewer and giving them fragmented moments of familiarity.

When flying above the landscape, perhaps in the very act of relocation, one can see unity, pattern, and rhythm on the surface below. Installation is naturally well suited to foster this sense of immersion. I often consider placing the audience in an aerial perspective, looking down on a landscape. They are both in it, and outside of it, of it and new to it, lost and dazzled.

I utilize a background in traditional object making to approach the more socio-ethnographic side of the place/landscape dialog. Image is used more readily in these object-based bodies of work, usually as signifier or symbol for a larger, more political “site” (as described in Miwon Kwon’s One Place After Another).

Often symbols of regional sculptural traditions are utilized to carry a discussion about our dynamic and complicated relationship with place. I intend the aesthetic qualities of an installation or object to be piece-specific. This requires a fluid approach towards beauty and a malleable skill set.

My work uses humor to disarm, material and craft like a candy, and always seeks to generate questions.