Monday, 20 April 2015
Around 1964 Len Lye (1901-1980) developed proposals for a series of 'tangible motion sculptures' which he collectively titled 'Convolutions.' These works were proposed as murals or friezes, to be located internally or externally on buildings in New York City. Unlike the more discrete 'figures of motion' found in other proposals, such as 'Harmonic' or 'Fountain,' the 'Convolution' series undulate and swell in an almost abject manner. There is a tension and anticipation watching this motion which, I argue, celebrates a type of laughter, ranging from enjoyment to embarrassment, which Lye found in the incidental, even promiscuous, encounters on urban streets.