The Big Build for July/August – THE ART OF THEO KAMECKE.
Theo Kamecke was for many years a film maker of award-winning documentaries whose subjects ranged from astronauts to coal miners, rodeo cowboys to nuclear scientists. He was in mission control during the first moonwalk and has been attacked by wasps in the heart of the Amazon. In the course of making films he often encountered physical objects and materials which fascinated him and usually managed to bring some back from his travels, with no particular purpose in mind. While perusing some stacks of electronic circuit boards one day, that changed, and the purpose was found.
He saw in the graphic patterns of electronic circuitry with their endless variety the same beauty we perceive in seashells, in crystals, in the grain of wood or even in the tree itself. All these are, after all, forms derived from function, so if we find beauty in them it is not because they were designed to please the eye. He saw that the aesthetic qualities of the circuitry graphics could, like hieroglyphs, be resolved into an inscrutable language or like colors, into a palette of mood.
And so in this spirit-treating a “manmade” electronic circuit as simply a newly evolved form of nature, Kamecke began creating sculpture surfaced with the graphics of circuitry, and he uses the traditional techniques of marquetry which in another century might have been employed with fine veneers. Though the material itself is the essence of hi-tech, the created works deliberately make no reference to that, hinting instead at ancient or familiar human cultures and at the feelings which separate us from the machine.
The sculptures of this series have been created from actual electronic circuitry (metal laminated to permanently dyed epoxy-fiberglass) applied in traditional marquetry technique to hardwood forms, with exquisite craftsmanship. They have the appearance of metal over polished black stone.
You can view the online gallery here.