writer and professor neil de la flor sat down with oscar glottman at his office to interview him on the upcoming exhibition. 9 ekphrastic poems and 9 large format photographs wrapped in canvas cloaks come together as an installation that is both minimalist and expressionist. un/wrapped [fragments] opens december 2nd at 7 pm, 2013 and runs through december 14th from 12 to 8pm @ the glottman satellite space (near glottman’s wynwood showroom) @ 2509 nw 2nd avenue, miami, fl 33127. to attend the opening event, scroll down to the bottom of this page.
neil de la flor: tell us about the process of putting together un/wrapped [fragments]. what are they?
oscar glottman g: the images are an assemblage. they appropriate the DNA of a photograph into a new form. a fragment, usually less that 2”x3” of the original, is enlarged through algorithmic formulas. These are supersized and printed as gicleé, using archival pigment inks on acid free rag coldpress media and wrapped in a canvas cloak with a zipper. an ekphrastic poem affected by fragments of my memory is printed on the on the interior of the canvas. the assemblages can be opened, or unzipped, by the viewer to enter the content. The images could be diptychs, but not in the traditional sense, because they are composed one inside the other rather than side-by-side.
nd: why are you drawn to photography?
og: photographs freeze a moment in time and what they capture is inherent to my point of view. they are my personal interpretation of reality beyond the pragmatic. through this medium, i am able to explore existential ideas that I wouldn’t normally investigate.
nd: why are you drawn to words?
og: words manifest personal ideas in fragments.
nd: what is the subject matter?
og: the subject matter is metaphysical and spiritual—and indirectly political. it is an exploration of existential themes: spirituality, time, reality, fantasy, universality, solitude, love and death. i’m intrigued by destabilizing dogma.
nd: tell us about your motivation behind creating these assemblages.
og: i’m interested in memories and how they are filters for interpretation, experience from the point of view of these memories, and how they affect our reality.
the works are built impressions. un/wrapped [fragments] is a record of observation, a filtered observation: and I am the filter.
nd: the cloaks seem complex. why did you choose to house the images in this way?
og: the inspiration for the wraps comes from relics and their reliquaries, which are about containers housing highly revered objects. historically reliquaries took very intricate and artistic forms. in my work, container and content, conceived in parallel though similar in essence, are equally important. one is quite abstract with words while the other is rich with visual content.
these constructs are commentaries on the art object and the collector. wrapping the art object (manipulated fragment of a photo) allows me to propose the work as private and meant to be enjoyed as a sacred object revealing its content in ceremony. the pieces are minimal when closed, yet sensual and rich when open. they are a choreographed experience.
Though generic in aesthetic, they are complicated in content and meant to function almost like a pandora’s box.
nd: un/wrapped [fragments] seems to unpack, in abstract terms, something personal about you, derived from memories. why is this so important to you?
og: memories are the filter of reality (or dis-reality).
nd: what role do the titles play in communicating your ideas?
og: mirroring the creative forces that generated the works, i came up with titles that trigger a certain preconception from the point of view of the audience/viewer (contaminated by their own experiences). the titles have double meanings. they’re paradoxical. for example, genesis, in its biblical sense alludes to a singular, unequivocal origin event—the implication of the photograph alludes to a singular event, yet the poem speaks of a myriad of genesis that are occurring simultaneously. a cycle of beginnings and endings at a physical and metaphysical level.
nd: why do you create?
og: art gives me the opportunity to be very honest and personal. with it, i am able to materialize thoughts and emotions in a way that affects others. I was trained as an architect and enjoy applying my knowledge of rationalization, analysis, and construction to also build experiences from abstract concepts with words and images rather than with building materials.
rsvp for the un/wrapped [frragments] vip opening event below, on facebook or call 305.438.3711