Melissa Barnes-Milton
Artist Statement
Dehumidifier Hot Water Heater (Drafting of Prototype 1)
2015, Serigraph on low rag paper

The 23×17 landscape oriented serigraph prints are a continuation of the Dehumidifier Hot Water Heater monoprints. Each print has the familiar a pair of cylinders flanked by a technical /mechanical object or another cylinder. The shapes are stencils made from free hand drawings of a dehumidifier hot water heater designed by me. Layers of lines, drawing and diagrams in different colors provide a landscape for the dehumidifier hot water heaters to occupy. The layering also creates a contradictory situation of mess and order. The strips of lines simultaneously provide structure and fail to align correctly. The color pallet is one typically used for blueprint, diagrams, and schematics. The lines, rulers, and size of the paper reiterates the blueprint theme. The loose lines with sharp, clear contradictory attributes complement the documentation form of the print thus unifying this series of loose prints of technical objects.

For this series, I studied the Haynes Repair Manuals and NAVAIR 11 Series Ordnance Assembly Manuals. Specifically for the exploded view illustrations. I also studied Chinese artist Shi Jindian, who is a 3D wire sculptor. My hopes were to create something that fell in between these two points of reference.

I had more success with this series than I did with the monoprints. I had the ability to play with fine lines and solid shapes. All of the prints shown today started off as throw away prints or practice runs. My intention was to print on the heavier rag Stonehenge paper that was cut to a size a lot smaller (11×17). Throughout each stage, I continued to layer on top of these practice runs because I didn’t want to waste paper. Towards the end of the project what I found was that the print looks better on larger paper. What you see before you are layers of mistakes, imperfections, and practice that came together and became something that echoed my thought process. This is a sort of transcript of how I work through ideas. It is a polaroid of my consciousness.

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