Things + physics | Fischli/Weiss's Der Lauf der Dinge

Raw and precise, here's an archived, live performance by a bunch of carefully chosen things, plus physics - Fischli/Weiss's 1989 Der Lauf der Dinge, or The State of Things (9:55)

I love the gritty greys of the concrete, metal and and sludgy chemicals.

I love the hisses, gurgles and clangs of the sound recording.

And I love how the objects behave like actors set in motion, destined to play their roles but capable at any moment, with a slip of chance and physics, of causing a completely different outcome.

Physics wins.

BOOM! Why is it satisfying like nothing else watching everyday things roll, crash, fly, spin and explode?

Something to do with order and chaos...

Constellation installation, a collaboration

I'm like a cat, give me a space and a ball of yarn and I'm happy.

Okay, and some pushpins. Cats might not be so good with those. Well, except when you knock them over like I did last night and they go scattering all over the concrete floor.

My newest project, a collaboration with Seattle dance troupe, UMAMI Performance, has begun, and if you can't tell, I'm excited.

I also know I'm in for hours of running up and down a ladder, my default sport.

The work is called Constellation Half-Remembered, and the theme is memory. The shows will take place in several locations throughout the summer, with the first two on May 24 and 25 at Project: Space Available on Seattle's Capitol Hill, which is where I'm currently creating this installation.

It's a challenge and a genuine thrill to be collaborating with these talented dancers, choreographers,  musicians, lighting designers and a video artists. I enjoy the intersection of all of these disciplines with visual art in a big way and it's exciting to find out what we create together.

On a personal note, the opportunity to affect a three-dimensional space feels to me like a natural outgrowth of painting. Given my current preoccupation with space and the universe, the association with stars is serindipitous. All of three of my ongoing projects right now seem to be flowing into one another around the themes of space, technology and trash.

Did I mention we artists get paid to do this? Thanks to UMAMI's supersmart and resourceful Aiko Kinoshita and Aaron Swartzman and their energetic and successful fundraising drive for the project late last year, called Precursor, each of the collaborators gets paid to make our art.

Keep an eye on the red thread, it has a mind of its own...I'll be posting more here as the piece evolves.

Constellation Half-Remembered

May 24 at 7:30pm
May 25 at 4:00pm

Project: Space Available

In the Heart of Capitol Hill's Pike/Pine Corridor, behind Neumo's Seattle, Washington

UMAMI Performance

Watch your step, moonwalkers

Buzz Aldrin’s footprint on the moon (via NASA, via Hyperallergic)On the one hand it seems overly navel-gazing, in the context of our nansecond of impact on our tiny corner of the universe, to preserve our first footprints in space.

On the other, laying down guidelines for exploration that promote care and preservation seems like the best possible plan. Maybe - just maybe - it will encourage us to approach the new frontier with more forethought than the way we approached some of the old ones.

Bravo, NASA for setting the tone.

The New Frontier - Allsion Meier for Hyperallergic

NASA to future moon explorers: Don’t ruin our Apollo landing sites - The Daily News

To Boston with love

Back Bay View to Hancock, 2003. Acrylic on Bristol board, 9 x 12 inches

Spring in Back Bay, 2003. Acrylic on Bristol board, 9 x 12 inches

It's been a wrenching few days following the events in Boston during and after the Boston Marathon. The shock of seeing mayhem and explosions in this city that is so familiar to me brought home how dear it is.

I lived there for four years during college, commuting from my parents' home 35 miles west of the city for a fifth year, and the images of the uproar on Boylston Street, right near the Hancock Tower where I used to wait for my Peter Pan bus to take me back to Shopper's World in Framingham, right near the beloved Boston Public Library where I spent hours one day poring over original drawings and prints by Rembrandt, Degas, Max Beckmann, Picasso, shocked me to tears that day. It seemed so incongruous.

I lived for a year on the Fenway in the Back Bay. These paintings, two of my early Squarescapes, derive from photographs I took in the neighborhood many years later. I'm posting them now with a heightened sense of loyalty and love for my East coast home city and all of the people in it who have been affected by the recent, tragic events.

The Conversation: Trash! | You're invited

Trash in Art: Pablo Picasso, Head of a Bull, 1942. Musée National Picasso, ParisJohn Boylan is a seasoned moderator who holds a series of talks called The Conversation.

He's invited me to be a panelist on tomorrow's discussion:
The Conversation:Trash!

Tuesday, April 16
7:00-9:00 pm

Vermillion Art Gallery Wine Bar
1508 11th Ave,
Seattle, WA 98122
(206) 709-9797

With Guests

Robin Worley

Karen Hackenberg

Julia Hensley

In the cozy back room at Vermillion.

Drinks and good food available at the bar. Join us!

On tea bags and Michelangelo

'I can't stop,' I say to the art historian who's been watching me install BIO. I fiddle with the placement of one last orange teabag wrapper.

He holds the door open and leans back to look at me, 'Even Michelangelo had to stop,' he says. 'Ha!' I say as the door swings shut, 'and this is no Sistine!'.

He pushes the door open again and jams his foot against it, letting cold, wet air flow in from the street. 'I've been to the Sistine,' he says, 'and this is better.' I splutter as he whirls off for a smoke. 'It's..BORING.'

BIO | On matter, Popchips™ bags and the universe | Show statement

Everything is made of the same stuff, vibrating at different frequencies. You, me, Popchips™ bag, wine bottle, satellites and meteorites, it’s all molecules and electricity. What differentiates me from this table, or the air, or that computer? Matter is mutable. Everything is part of everything else.

In BIO, I use five months’ worth of hoarded detritus to create a sculptural collage in direct response to the iconic green walls and architecture of Joe Bar.

It’s a combination portrait of a place, self-portrait, and observation on the manmade ecosystem of consumption we all participate in.

The installation will build over the course of the show, so please check back often. You can also check my website blog for frequent picture updates. Thanks for visiting.

Julia Hensley
March, 2013