Bathsheba Grossman: Sun Star

  • ©,



    Sun Star


Creation Year:



    12 in x 12 in x 12 in



Artist Statement:

    A cube and octahedron in their dual positions, given a twist and expressively formed.

    I’m a digital sculptor, exploring art and mathematics by means of metal and technology. My work studies order in 3-space: inside and outside, the point at zero and the point at infinite distance, how the dimensional axes can be alike and different. It’s a road map to how we live in the (apparently) Euclidean world.

    I’m often asked whether these pieces are based on logic or intuition, and I must answer “both.” My intuition is shot through with love of logic and order. Studying hasn’t done it any harm either. I once worked with a California psychic who would say: “My inner child has been around for years, and she knows all the tricks,” and I’d say the same: my intuitive/creative germ has benefited from a lot of mathematical education.

    My designs exist first as ideas, then as CAD models, and they enter the physical world as parts produced by various CAM processes. Finally, they’re finished by hand assemblage, painting, chasing, and whatever craftsmanly methods are required. So the process moves backwards in history, from virtual idea to hand-finished metal. Considering the many technologies I use (laser etching, laser cutting, 3D printing, and so on) the actual experience is surprisingly analog: much of the time, I simply push things with my hands until they look right to my eyes.

    CAD/CAM is a young, crude, difficult, under-used medium as I write this, but in it is the germ of an artistic sea change. It brings sculpture into the company of poetry and music, among the eternal media. Because the originals of my work are data, they transcend location, medium, and time. Ultimately (in my lifetime I hope) art sculpture will be manufactured on demand, at the size, medium, and price point requested by the viewer. Far from threatening the value of sculpture by eroding their scarcity, I believe that this will allow them to reach their natural audience, so that they can be owned by everyone who likes them. We’re standing at the Gutenberg threshold for sculpture: it will soon be affordable, ubiquitous, and, like everything else that shares those properties, digital.

    Apart from the great historical moment, I hope you’ll enjoy this piece for itself. I’m a full-time artist supported by sales, and in the end it is all about enjoyment I found pleasure and tranquility in designing and making this object, and I hope you find pleasure and tranquility in observing it.