Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Dan Grayber

Dan Grayber's sculptures look like something you would find in a mechanical engineering lab at some university, or perhaps in an R&D department at Caterpillar, Inc. The abundance of springs, cables, chains, pulleys, thread forms and structural beams painted in yellow makes them highly interesting to look at.  All of them use the physics of compression, tension, leverage and friction to provide mechanisms for the self-sufficient support of each sculpture within its environment. You'll find them wedged inside glass domes, clinging to corners, and stuck into vertical walls. 

I really love how these sculptures first captivate you with their mix of complex beauty and industrial workmanship, and then puzzle you as you try to figure out how all of the pieces function together to make it work.  The punch line comes when you begin to wonder what would happen if a cable or a spring failed, or a rubber pad slipped, and all of the potential energy in the piece was suddenly liberated.  I had to chuckle over one comment that Dan made about one of his sculptures having some "issues with gravity"

Good stuff.  Be sure to check out Dan's website for more....