Gold Standard is an installation of gold cuboids made of light card. It stands up because their corners and edges give the component boxes ridgidity. It is actually very flimsy. It is made of the same material and is a direct descenant of the earlier Scaffolding and Megastructure installations. One would expect boxes for chocolates to be made of this sort of material. A person who was trying to give up smoking said that it engendered a yearning for Benson and Hedges; she was right, it is that very stuff.
Gold Standard was first seen in Bristol in June 2010, a small installation about two and a half meters high, with an interior light.
Then I had an idea of laying an endless, horizontal, column of the golden boxes along the corridor in my studio building. Someone suggested this arrangement was like a Carl Andre ‘…but wrong’, the boxes’ height from the floor not being ‘elegant’.
My interest in this installation was the boxes’ three dimensional, space-filling properties and their apparent disappearance towards infinity along the windowless corridor. In fact Andre has used more three-dimensional materials; Joint (1968) and Secant (1977), were both lines of objects leading through the landscape. The way they follow the rise and fall of the ground brings to mind the man-made, rigid sqareness which other of his works require. In this respect Gold Standard is a poule luxe; out of doors it would very rapidly succumb. Andre acknowledges a debt to Brancusi, but his claim was to have put ‘Priapus down on the floor’.
In July I was invited to join with Island Projects for their show, Harsh lines and Spongy Surfaces. It was concerned with the architectural environment and our reationships to it.
My piece was installed but a rather celebrational person collided with it late on the opening night and it became slighty ruinous, which suited it well and gave it a more poetic air. After that we thought a ceremonial demolishment at the end of the show would be a suitable conclusion.
In November, havningbeen unable to fulfil my promise to contribute Gold Standard to the BV entrance during the Open Studios event (due to the birth of a grandchild), I decided to try out the boxes in the entrance anyhow. Eleven boxes in the entry-way made a very different sort of installation, one which, I felt, commanded the space well. (Shame about the Open Studios, a huge success apparently, but the entrance was filled with food sales and café tables; no room for floor-filling art).