Sneaking into the Monument Lot from the Building on the Right
This site-responsive project was created at Spencer Brownstone gallery on New York’s Lower East Side. After researching former iterations of land use and businesses housed in the gallery’s location at 170B Suffolk St, I found that the gallery was formerly the site of the gravestone business, Forsyth Monument Works.
In reference to the objects once housed in the space, created a series of “monuments” that referenced not only to cemetery headstones, but also the architectural forms and details these grave markers often refer to themselves. The outdoor sculpture, Monuments (Tripartite Arch), alluded to the standard arched tombstone shape as well as the tripartite windows that make up the upper floors of the nearby Rivington House --a building embroiled in development-related scandal.
This installation brought attention to the windows that once lined Forsyth Monument Works; using a reductive process, the paint of the former exterior windows –now bricked-over were scraped of paint to reveal their placement. Mimicking these former apertures, cuts were made along the gallery’s northern walls to make visible the brick walls buried beneath the white walls of the gallery. Lining the opposite wall are arches from Fenestration 2, examples of a virtually obsolete method of decorative mold-making, whereby the mold gets run in place using wet plaster. Today, this technique is used almost exclusively for restoration. Thus, these were created to reference historic decorative moldings by employing the language of repair.