In Rare Item, Miles Gertler produces a taxonomic index of architectural technologies. In two-dimensional prints and three-dimensional castings, objects and non-objects populate scenarios toward the production of material situations as heterotopian reflections.
In his series of giclée prints, Scenario City, Gertler claims the abject constituents of the built environment—signage, stanchions, stakes, ropes, piles—as the critical architectural element. The overriding frameworks depicted in each image are host to a collapse of territorial properties. These speculative images propose endless ark-like vessels for the production of an other world of accidental reconfiguration. In this sense, architecture is not merely organizational, but constitutive of the situations produced therein. A companion guide to each image documents the naturalist imagery that populates each collage, embedding in each constructed image an index of hyperlinks to a deeper history of territorial analysis and modification. The work is preoccupied with the manufacturing of the sublime and the uncanny in the ordinary, while consciously obviating the human body in all roles but viewership.
Resin casts, 3D-prints, silicone
Rare Item further probes the uncanny and the status of the object through a collection of instant heirlooms, or, one-of-a-kind design objects unburdened by the expectation of function.
These objects—hand-cast and pigmented resin—reproduce in material terms the nostalgia and narrative already present in inherited heirlooms. They flirt with use and uselessness, and as such, with the abject. These formal primitives are, despite their ontological ambivalence, occasionally well-suited as stand-ins for rock collecting, floral arrangements, or sculpture.
They are totemic objects for ordinary scenarios. Look upon; stroke fondly; re-arrange; repeat. Here too the object, or non-object as the case may be, sets the dominant architectural scale and serves as the key architectural technology for the production of a situation or space. As in the images, each part is receptive to the charge of the viewer’s memory and prepossession.