Pipaluk Lake — Configurations
Past: February 2 → March 17, 2012
One day when she found herself in a field, the glass artist, Pipaluk Lake saw three parachutists appear. This vision of the inflated parachutes in an upwards move whilst the power of gravity simultaneously pulled the men downwards, fascinated the artist. Since then, her pursuit has been to give form to these movements and opposing notions of elevation, lightness, suppleness as well as their contrary: the weight of the invisible force of gravity. Whereas the notion of weight is associated with glass, lightness and suppleness scarcely are…
The exhibition Configurations brings together two manifest tendencies in Lake’s recent work: on the one hand, works with a predominant textile quality (draperies, warps and threads) and organic aspect. On the other hand, the Layers series: superimposed thin glass plates are combined with other materials; these fuse together during the firing and then open up and are deployed or, on the contrary, are densely folded. Water, ice, air, wind, fabric, flesh, vegetation or rock, many associations to suggest the immaterial, movement, substance and the living. Forms are born from a sharp and open dialog between matter, process, strength of will and experience.
Those who have an a priori about glass being a cold, static and purely decorative matter will discover a dreamlike world where humor, originality and unconventional beauty cohabitate. Lake’s acute plastic sense allows her to play with tensions and the surprising harmonies between rigor, geometry and the suppleness of a material that is pushed to its extremes. The aim is never to reproduce or represent. If a sculpture reminds us of certain objects or named forms, its true designation is more sensorial. Confronted with Lake’s works, it’s as if a desire to perceive, observe and feel differently is materialized in one go. Thus, the eye is willfully projected into the soft movement of a luminous Cradle, just as it travels, (for a long time no doubt), into the complex depths of Layers…Fragile, dense, raw, sometimes all of these together, Lake’s sculptures seem infinitely evocative.
Lake’s working method
With her training spanning over four disciplines : wood sculpture, textiles, metalware/jewellery and glass, Lake plays with a large scope of knowledge in order to fuse glass plates (windowpane), metals (plates, thread or oxides), enamels, colourings and atypical materials. Her sculptures are the result of a learned preparatory process: hammering, cutting, piling or sewing of materials (glass, metals…) presented like packages which she then suspends in the kiln. Heat but also gravity work together and stretch the matter until the artist decides to stop this process where experience and alchemy meet. Lake then reworks, polishes and cuts in order to obtain her final piece.