Artemis Herber’s passion and energy filled Guild’s courtyard. We couldn’t help but be intrigued and excited by what she created, as she encouraged us to move through her artwork and shift our perspectives. It’s as though, outfitted in a red T-shirt and red headband, she and her “candy apple-colored” modular sculptures were one. Artemis’s work is thoughtful and versatile, her vision of urban culture and sustainability clear. Her face beamed as she cut the bubble wrap to reveal her work – and that passion was contagious. Each sculpture was precisely placed and turned to her eye’s delight, creating a dynamic, engaging environment with purpose and flow.
You’ve said your sculptures communicate with the space and with visitors. How does the one you created for Guild’s courtyard do so?
The idea with modular sculptures is that you can create a sense of place in any sort of space. The single sculptures occupy the courtyard and define it as a place that visitors want to meander through – one that calms, relaxes, and entertains with endless views while in a flow. The setting of the sculptures also motivate to interact with the space – you can sit or walk around them, lean against them – your experience within the courtyard and your interactions with the sculptures are yours to make. Living with art is important; it’s not just for museums.
Explain your process in creating this work. How did the courtyard influence you? What materials did you use? How did it all come together?
After I drafted a concept and ideas for Guild’s courtyard, I created 1:1 cardboard models of the sculptures, which were arranged and rearranged in my studio to determine the best orientation. Cardboard is a ubiquitous and unpretentious material in which I found a way to convey into steel sculptures. Once I cut each of the cardboard models into vertical segments and numbered them, I teamed up with Tim Scofield and Kyle Miller of Scofield Studios, who welded and crafted the sculptures based on the given templates of the original cardboard models. They translated those templates into steel using the hand carved and numbered templates that I provided for that project.
The process and concept have a strong relation to the Bauhaus movement in terms of a utopian craft guild combining architecture, sculpture, and painting into a single creative expression that includes real handwork; real craftsmanship. Once welded, the next step was painting the sculptures with primer and an application of four layers of candy apple-colored paint, a red that communicates the color palette of Bauhaus and also reflects on the gray, reddish-brown color of Guild’s exterior brick façade and architectural features of the building while the red color of the modular sculptures intents to welcome and draw you into the courtyard.
How have your German roots influenced your art?
I studied and was trained in Germany, so I’m familiar with Bauhaus. It was natural to put my mindset into the expectations of Guild’s design concept. It was all about form, color, and creating something artful that accommodates the functionality of the space. I imagined the progress that Bauhaus would have made in the 21st century – that was my inspiration for this installation.