Maryland artist David Knopp was recently the focus of a series on Maryland artists. We’ll certainly be talking about him but also about the area in general. As with so many aspects of art looking at individual artists is extremely important for helping you work through your own projects and garner additional ideas for what you need. Each of these artists can also give you some interesting ideas about how to use materials in new and interesting ways as well.
Many materials such as bone, veneer and synthetic alloys of metal have been used in the modern age and Maryland has many people who experiment with these. Surprisingly even the most durable materials can now be sculpted and molded with the right technology changing it. This is true of everything from bent wood pieces to incredibly resilient steel.
While working on all of this he attempts to manipulate the viewer’s eyes to various focal points on the items. This is a common technique in art but can be done in a nearly infinite number of ways. His lines lead you to one section, then another and then another after that as well. Due to this there is a lot of complexity to notice simply from taking a look at all of these various pieces as well.
You can read a bit about the inspiration created here. In this case David Knopp uses plywood in order to create each of his pieces. Since the material has a beautiful sheen at base it is easy to figure out why he would go with this for so much of his work as well. In his work he uses the final grain of the wood, shaving off sections and even top areas in order to create different textures. In his best work he even creates the illusion of movement across the grain as well.
All of this is also indicative of a trend in modern furniture as well, going from the small details to the big picture and back again. Composite art has been popular for ages but perhaps never as much as now. People want pieces which can be 10 or even more different things depending on how the observer looks at it. It opens up possibilities within the minds of those who view these which were never there before. Fully sculpted pieces are a big part of this.
Many nearby artists and designers have taken a hint from this story for their own outdoor patio furniture. As such no matter who you get an item from in the area a table or chair will probably be much more than that in the eyes of many. This allows you to tell your friends about a lot more than they ever expected to notice.
If you have your own nearby art scene then you should probably support it. You never know when your favorite line could come out of the work of an up-and-coming artist who does something different and makes the design world take notice. This is how ideas form and progress in this industry.