Healy & Phillips: "MetaphorM"

“MetaphorM,” 2008 -- our new installation at Suyama Space, takes the existing architecture as subject for extended variations on structure and line, substance and shadow, volume and void, motion and stillness. Combining sculpture, sound and video in a complex but subtle overlay to the strong rhythms of ribs, beams and skylights in the space, the piece heightens the viewers’ awareness of the “natural” room and its ever-changing light and shifting moods. At the same time we offer another experience altogether – a world within a world of artistic invention that engages the imagination.

Carolyn Healy created an airy, geometric armature of over 200 steel rods, interlocking and suspended in space, anchored in the beams and roof joists, that echo basic figures of the building itself. With the addition of cables, ropes, pulleys and objects of varied shape and weight she animates the construction with looping curves and surprising “balancing acts” as she works with gravity to create line. The effect is of a multi dimensional “drawing in space.”

John Phillips adds the sensations of motion and sound to the perceptual mix, introduced in response to changes in light conditions in the room. A light sensor placed in the gallery provides feedback to the computer system controlling three video projections on the walls. These projections consist of slowly evolving abstract images, all of which approximate the visual tones of shadows. The play of natural (sun) and artificial (video) light passing through the space creates a slightly disorienting conversation between the sculptures and echoes of themselves. A very quiet 4-channel sound mix acts as a sonic "gel" to tie the video to the sculpture and the room.

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