Saturday, December 03, 2005


New piece from Joseph Barbaccia.

Marriage, 2005, clay and salad tongs.

I'm fascinated by Joseph's utensil sculptures. They are familiar and disturbing. Uncanny. I'm not a huge fan of Freudian interpretation of art, but here's an excerpt from his essay The Uncanny...
...if this is indeed the secret nature of the uncanny, we can understand why linguistic usage has extended das Heimliche [‘homely’] into its opposite, das Unheimliche...; for this uncanny is in reality nothing new or alien, but something which is familiar and old-established in the mind and which has become alienated from it only through the process of repression.
Those hands grasp each other, flesh and mechanism combined. Salad tongs are such an everyday thing, an extension of our hands, a utensil we use at family gatherings. And yet the addition of the hands makes them into an unknown. The thought of using these hands to serve up salad is... creepy. But it's a simple and appropriate metaphor, too. Neither hand alone can accomplish anything... but working together, in concert, they work like... well, a well-crafted utensil. Like a good marriage should.


At 8:03 AM, Blogger Joseph Barbaccia said...

Thank you Amy. You hit the nail on the head.

At 1:28 PM, Blogger Amy said...

I'm glad! Thanks for keeping me updated on your work.

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