I have had the wonderful opportunity to work with Alois Kronschlaeger as his “critical eye” as he installed his solo show titled Allotropisms at Cristin Tierney (546 West 29th Street, New York, NY 10001).
Alois said that there were four main phases to Allotropisms. Phase 1 was the construction of the wood structure that hangs from the ceiling of the gallery and Phase 2 was the installation of fluorescent lights that lined the top of the structure (which ultimately didn’t get fully finished until after Phase 4). When I came into the process just after Phase 2, they had just finished testing the mesh overlay and the paint in the space. For Phase 3, we had to drape aluminum mesh and attach it to the hanging structure. Phase 3 was a real test of strength and delicacy as we unraveled 100 foot spools that would connect to the wood from above. Phase 4 involved dripping paint onto the draped mesh starting from the bottom and working its way up to the highest points in the structure that Alois could reach. Alois called this part “paint by restraint” as he had to climb into the structure – which was essentially a hazardous jungle gym – and pour the paint gently onto the mesh. This part of the process was really messy for me because as I refilled Alois’ paint bucket and scooped paint off the floor I got dripped on from above as the paint poured through the mesh.
The process of planning Allotropisms was a very scientific one with measurements, renderings, and even a scale model but the process of building the site-specific installation was very organic. Alois put a lot of trust in his team to install this work and it has been a truly remarkable journey. Through this experience I have learned that it’s important to have a plan, test things out, get outside opinions, and then reign it all in to create a stunning piece of artwork.
Here are some photos documenting the process: