Sarah Braman - University of Houston
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Sarah Braman

(American, b. 1970)

  • Here, 2019

Text Transcript: Here

Hello, my name is Sarah Braman, and I made the sculpture called Here.

I really like repurposing and reusing objects in sculpture. This one is made out of a concrete culvert that would normally be underground draining and carrying water, often around highways and roads. In this piece, I added colored glass fitted into aluminum frames that go in the holes which used to drain the water. I wanted this sculpture to be an invitation to slow down and enjoy the experience of looking. That's why I called the sculpture Here. It's an invitation to take a minute, and be here with the piece, moving around it, and noticing the changes in color and light as you go. Since it's abstract, there isn't a story or narrative you have to know or understand. It's more just about being with the object and looking for what it has to offer you.

Do you notice what you can see through the sculpture? What do you notice that's reflected back at you from the landscape or the people in the windows? What happens when reflections overlap the transparencies? These are the things I really like - these moments of visual confusion where we're not really sure what's going on and what we're seeing. I hope that if you can get caught up in this kind of looking as you move around, it offers a short reprieve from the buzz of what's on your mind and the long list of things you might be worried about today. I always hope that this pause can help us return to our day and be more thoughtful productive, but I'm also just hoping that you get a chance to feel the joy of the color in the same way it feels good to look up at a clear blue sky or feel the green grass.

Thank you so much for taking the time to look and listen, and I hope you enjoy the rest of this fantastic exhibition.

Concrete drainage pipe, powder-coated aluminum frames, laminated glass
Courtesy of the artist and Mitchell-Innes & Nash, New York
Location: Ezekiel W. Cullen Building

Light from the sun projects through the circular, colored glass windows of this industrial form, casting lightly pigmented shadows. This dynamic interplay of light and color can be observed by peering through the windows and walking around the sculpture and will vary depending on the time of day and position of the sun. The effect of the shadows references a sundial, which is an ancient technique of capturing time through the movement of shadows cast by the sun.

As you move around the outside of this sculpture, notice how the mirroring and reflecting of the surface distorts perception. The artist believes that slowing down to encounter the shifting light and color can be a transformative experience.

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