A Virtual Evolution Stephen Hendee
A Virtual Evolution Stephen Hendee
“I am a sculptor who primarily uses computers to manipulate materials to make objects out of those materials. But it’s not as simple as that.”
Hendee is a Master Sculptor and professor at MICA (Maryland Institute College of the Arts) whose work tends to explore both the physical and virtual world in an interconnected way. Well traveled, he has dwelled in several cities throughout his life and so has his work. Over the course of time, his sculptures have been exhibited in galleries and museums such as; the Smart Museum in Chicago, Illinois, the St. Louis Art Museum in St Louis, Missouri, Rice University Art Gallery in Houston, Texas as well as the PS.1 Contemporary Art Center, the New Museum, Sculpture Center LIC and the Whitney Museum of American Art at Altria in New York, New York. He is even the designer off the Monument to the Simulacrum in Las Vegas, Nevada, designed to stand until 2105.
His physical expression of the virtual world started during his studies at Stanford University in the early 90’s. He would use VRML, (Virtual Reality Modeling Language) a programing language, that was designed when they were still deciding whether to make the internet interface or three-dimensional.
Hendee would use this programing language to design virtual sculptures, however, because it was so early on and no real output had been made accessible, he never had the opportunity to see his work actualized back then. Furthermore, he continued to use this programing language as a virtual sketchbook and began to use other materials to replicate his virtual designs.
“Because of places like Open Works, it’s possible for people to make things virtually.”
Although the virtual world has greatly inspired Hendee’s artistry, his interest in many art forms over the years have shaped and intertwined itself into his work. He has actualized his virtual vision with many different materials; from clay to wood and from metal to cardboard boxes. Here at Open Works, with access to outputting tools like the CNC Router, Laser Cutter and other digital fabrication tools, he is now able to make his artistic expression of the virtual world clearer, more defined, textured and precise.
“This has been part of a process. Going from something that’s handmade, ….kind of emulating something that’s from the virtual, to making something completely in a computer and then outputting it as an actual object. …there are differences between them, and I’m in the process of figuring it out.”
(Digitally designed and fabricated from laser cut parts)
As Hendee continues to ‘figure it out’ creatively, we get to accompany him along his journey as he continues to create and explore the technology centered work he spent many years creating by hand. His desire evolve along with the technology over the years compiled with his wealth of knowledge and desire to share what he learns is what makes Hendee’s work so enjoyable to experience. His next exhibition will be at The Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco for Sabbath: The 2017 Dorothy Saxe Invitational, where he will be displaying his latest work he designed and created right here at Open Works. The exhibition runs Nov 12, 2017–Feb 25, 2018.
Q: What’s the best advice you ever received and took?
A: Well, I think the best advice I got was an inadvertent feedback from a teacher of mine Cork Marcheschi. He said, “you know one day you’re not gonna want to work with steel objects anymore. You should think about working with lighter materials.” I think I, at the time, didn’t take it very seriously, but then I realized over that, well you get old and he can’t do the same thing all the time. (Laughter on both ends)
Q: What advice would you give to future makers?
A: Recognize opportunity when you see it.
For more information about Stephen Hendee visit StephenHendee.com
Your content goes here. Edit or remove this text inline or in the module Content settings. You can also style every aspect of this content in the module Design settings and even apply custom CSS to this text in the module Advanced settings.
Building a great team is critical to any business, and startups in particular. People are the absolute core of any makerspace, and that foundation starts with a smart, diligent, self-driven staff. Before coming on to the Open Works project, I didn’t have a lot of...
Deoxyribonucleic Acid. I can remember the very moment when I first found out the meaning of the letters in the abbreviated term we call DNA. I was about nine years old and I threw that word around like I some tiny, prepubescent scientist. But if I’m being honest, I...
Who knew that scary could be so cool? I didn't, until I met Open Works member Jason Farrell who has quite an eye for gore. As a nostalgia artist, Farrell recreates old horror movie mask for lovers of dread. A market filled with fans that can’t get enough of those...
Open Works Member Stefano Vellone is the owner and operator of Vellone Guitars, an acoustic/electric guitar company that got its start in his hometown Montreal, Canada. This luthier was one of the first members to join Open Works, and his knowledge and wisdom around...