Edward Kelley | The Flying Buttress is my Friend, Fluxx Gallery
May 4 - May 31, 2012
May 12, 2012
Without the flying buttress support system, Gothic pointed arches wouldn’t have stood as high or as long as they have. They needed help or a crutch to get to the epic heights gothic architects were aiming to achieve. This month at Fluxx, Drake Sculpture Tech and 3D Design Faculty member, Edward Kelley, takes on the Gothic arch himself in his show “The Flying Buttress is my Friend”.
Before moving to Des Moines, Kelley was working in Lincoln, Nebraska making stucco foam trims and moldings used to mimic a variety of architectural styles. For example you could order Mediterranean detailing for your new West Des Moines franchisee or doric order columns for your front porch. Whatever you like. Lots of today’s modern products are chameleons of the real thing. Engineers have transformed objects usually made of wood, metal and stone to be streamlined into foam illusions with the promise of unlimited pretending possibilities.
Kelley is not giving us a complete illusion of a gothic arch. His one-man architectural marvel is built from pink extruded polystyrene Styrofoam. Commercially, the pink foam is used as insulation. In this construction, he is honoring a past architectural value system by rendering it in his own modern day materials. It’s like a ghost or faint memory of its stone counterpart. Next to the cold, hard concrete floor and ceiling, the raw pink foam appears weightless and floating.
Three prints accompany the arch in the show. They illustrate how the arch developed out of geometry and line. By calculating angles, diameters, heights and widths, the drawings show the birth of the archway now hovering humbly and majestically above. They add a warmth to the show, offering evidence of the process and history associated with this arch’s creation.
Visit Fluxx before May 31st to witness the big pink archway for yourself.