Adam Faust: Thesis Spotlight

Adam Faust is a sculpture major who is currently studying abroad in Sienna, Italy.  He is currently taking specific interest in working with found objects and documenting his manipulation of them with photography.

H/E: Where are you from?

AF: Durham, NC

H/E: How long have you been creating with your choice of medium?

AF: I did a ton of photography in high school, but fell in love with sculpture in college. Most of my work now is kind of a blend between the two mediums. I don’t believe that it is necessary to brand myself as a photographer or a sculptor, I’m just doing what feels right. I have also taken a fair bit of ceramics at Guilford, and that may or may not play a part in my practice when I return. My work in the thesis exhibition will probably be exclusively three dimensional though.

H/E: Why did you decide to apply for senior thesis?

AF: I don’t know why I wouldn’t do it. I can’t imagine not doing it. I really love creating, and to have the chance to have a whole body of work on display, as well as learn all of the behind the scenes work that goes into an exhibition is super exciting to me. It will be a great way to cap off my time here at Guilford.

H/E: What’s your thesis about and how would you describe your process?

AF: The majority of the work from this semester is presented as photographs of what I think is most easily described as found sculpture in the environment I am currently in. Some of the scenes are manipulated by me, some are presented as I found them. It is kind of a way for me to catalog this new world I am in while studying abroad. I don’t have access to welding or a woodshop, so finding little peculiar instances around me that are unintentionally sculptural has been my focus. A more artsy wording is on my website:

I would like this work to speak as a praise of existence. This work is not about the beautiful, but about the dismissed and the overlooked. I hope to show these scenes in a way that bespeaks beauty where traditional ideas of the word are nowhere to be found. Perhaps conceptual, the work is a reflection of an enhanced sensory experience in the day to day. When viewed as a whole the work offers a poetic approach to viewing the simplest of objects. Presented straightforward as possible, these discovered and created scenes exist whether or not one encounters, or should I say notices, them in the real world. I share with you a glimpse of my interaction and investigation of objects I come across, in the hopes that you may find and create your own appreciation of the overlooked and the under-appreciated.

I have lately been itching to get more hands on, and the results of that is under the objects tab on my website. I have begun to embrace a sense of impulse, and a do-first-think-later kind of approach. The work with chairs and balance has been fun. The latter works of that section are responses to field trips we have been taking through Italy. During hikes through the woods and visits to vineyards I have been collecting items I find visually compelling, without much thought to a final product. These items then combine into what you see on the site.

H/E: Who/what are your influences?

AF: Gabriel Orozco especially, but also Richard Wentworth, Andy Goldsworthy, and Erwin Wurm to name a few.

H/E: What are your plans after graduation (if any)?

AF: I am pretty sure I will be working at a Quaker Camp in Maine next Summer. I am interested in getting a welding certification after that and doing some welding work to support some sort of studio practice. I am also going to be looking for some residencies and what not. I think I want to teach eventually but I want to do so much more before I settle into a career track.

H/E: Has living in Sienna influenced your work? If so, how?

AF: Absolutely. Studying in another country is challenging, and doing an art thesis under totally new circumstances is crazy. I am creating work unlike anything I have ever done, and loving it. Being in another country with another language has booted me right out of my routine and comfort zone, and it couldn’t have been a better thing for my practice (life). It seems as though this body of work has served as a way for me to reorient myself in a foreign environment. Before I started this journey I recognized that I would not have the access to materials like steel nor a studio I could occupy. In truth these “restrictions” have broadened my horizons: I have limitless access to “materials” and my “workspace” changes with every step I take. I still love steel, and I am excited to see how this mentality I have adopted here will play a part in strictly sculptural endeavors I will pursue when I get back to Hege-Cox and Hildebrandt.

H/E: Anything else you would like to add?

AF: I am also doing a “behavioral cut-up” where I am only wearing t-shirts that are solid black. I have written about this some on my website.

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To check out more of Adam’s work, visit his website here!

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