A proposal for an assemblage of linked, landscape- sculptural spaces located in the Upper and Lower Courtyards of the Birmingham Museum of Art. The ‘gardens’ are made from modified and reconfigured found objects and materials from a variety of sources including postindustrial sites. In effect, the objects will have withdrawn from the practices for which they were constructed, and emerged into new alignments with each other.
Some of the gardens take sculptural concerns as a primary consideration. Some reinstate the format of a particular kind of garden, using gardens that are not ordinarily found with that type. Others investigate the functionality of garden components, asking what might happen if a system is disturbed, or a tool is broken.
The proposed sculptural landscape brings viewers into a surprising encounter with the banal products of industrial obsolescence. They ask if there is not a kind of dignity (that is not nostalgic or sentimental) that can be revealed within these broken elements through the act of inciting them into combination with each other. But beyond this, the project has a deeper concern: can a tool, a system, a landscape sometimes be so broken that it is unrecoverable?
Sites of Exchange is a collaborative venture with sculptor Paul Cullen.