Robert Therrien is a sculptor whose works often magnify remarkable aspects of ordinary objects. No title (arch) is a wooden construction shaped like the arched stained-glass windows characteristic of Gothic (12th-16th century) church architecture. However, No title (arch) has a more sinister appearance than what one might expect to find in a church window. The artwork lacks the transparent windowpane that would allow a viewer to see through it. Instead, the viewer is met with a solid board colored a mottled and ghoulishly muted green that looks similar to an oil spill. There is a large crack running through the bottom section of the artwork, as well as splintered veins near the middle. The imperfections of the wooden board enhances the eeriness of Therrien’s arch. While a window is used for looking out onto the outside world, Therrien’s arch perhaps more accurately evokes a portal, suggesting the viewer look through the swirling green to imagine a realm far beyond the architectural walls of our physical world. Depending on the viewer’s personal memories or experiences, No title (arch) may also be interpreted as a mirror allowing its viewers to examine themselves and the world around them.
Artist: Robert Therrien
Title: No title (arch)
Medium: Mixed media on wood
Dimension: 46 x 15 1/2 x 2 in. (116.84 x 37.37 x 5.72 cm)
Collection: The Buck Collection at the UCI Institute and Museum for California Art
Copyright: © 2019 Robert Therrien / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
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