Forgotten Networks, 2020
Welded steel

Kurt Novak: What does our piece ‘mean’? Well, why ask us? Regardless of what they are told, viewers interpret things their own way anyway. In fact, even between Bob and I, you will get two different answers. And since our normal work processes are very different, it makes sense we might interpret things differently too. Me, I tend to think out pretty thoroughly what I want to do within any given piece and then basically hire myself to execute it. Generally, I want to create exactly what existed in my mind’s eye, and the closer I get, the better I feel about the piece.

Bob Sestok: You know, working with another artist is difficult. Yet rewarding in the sense that, in this case I was able to see my options as a creator in a different way. I was exploring territories that I had previously visited and although I had reservations I was able to find a way to be a part of this other artist’s thoughts — working with narrative images, invented by you.

I often work with discarded or cut-off pieces from my welded steel sculptures. I came to realize that using the leftover metal from making your part of the sculpture was a logical idea. To combine the abstract pieces I found lying on the ground with your figurative images made sense to me.

I guess we should explain to everybody that we welded up your part of the piece first, then you had to leave town and I added stuff and finished it off.

Kurt Novak: Well, I think you buffed off the particularity of my imagery and brought in a more heightened sense of poetry and context. Perhaps you made our piece more personal and universal.

After your adjustments/additions, what we now see is a conflicted individual (the combination of male and female imagery can just stand for ‘all elements of society’) surrounded by a storm cloud of indecision or controversy. Our protagonist seems to be pondering the next step they will take, with regards to whatever it is they are thinking about.

Bob Sestok: Maybe…