Extremes, though contrary, have the like effects. Extreme heat kills, and so extreme cold: extreme love breeds satiety, and so extreme hatred; and too violent rigor tempts chastity, as does too much license. -- George Chapman
Ms. Lane, 41, grew up on Vancouver Island, in British Columbia, and studied welding, planning to use the technique to make art (and, if that proved impossible, simply to make a living). Some sculptors, including Richard Serra, who has called welding “a form of stitching,” use the technique to join pieces of metal. Ms. Lane, by contrast, uses her torch to cut baroque patterns into such mundane objects as shovels, Dumpsters and old oil drums.
The work is about the contrasts between the industrial and the fanciful, the opaque and the transparent. Ms. Lane described herself as “a person who always has opposites in my head.”
In an artist’s statement, Lane says about her work:
I like to work as a visual devil’s advocate, using contradiction as a vehicle for finding my way to an empathetic image, an image of opposition that creates a balance - as well as a clash - by comparing and contrasting ideas and materials.This manifested in a series of “Industrial Doilies”, pulling together industrial and domestic life as well as relationships of strong and delicate, masculine and feminine, practical and frivolity, ornament and function. There is also a secondary relationship being explored here, of lace used in religious ceremonies as in weddings, christenings and funerals,
With this notion of desirable oppositions I created the structure “fabricate”. In this Structure I hand cut lace trimming patterns into 9 I-beams, then constructed a tower, simultaneously macho, and of delicate finery. The metaphor of lace further intrigued me by its associations of hiding and exposing at the same time; like a veil to cover, or lingerie to reveal. It also introduces a kind of humor through the form of unexpected relationships. Like a Wrestler in a tutu, the absurdity of having opposing extremist stances is there for reaction and not rational understanding; the rational discussion arises in the search for how one thing defines the other by its proximity.
Via Foley Gallery, Cal Lane’s website, NY Times, and Layers of Meaning Blog