2013 Rakow Commission: Andrew Erdos
Andrew Erdos (2013)
Ghost Walk under Infinite Darkness
Andrew K. Erdos (American, b. 1985)
With the assistance of Lorin Silverman (American, b. 1987)
United States, Brooklyn, New York, and Corning, New York, 2013
Blown and mirrored glass, fused, hot-worked, and cut murrine cane, applied dichroic glass; two-way mirrored box, wood pedestal, light-emitting diode (LED) light
2013.4.39, the 28th Rakow Commission
When all your senses are activated is oftentimes when there is a moment of clarity. – Andrew Erdos
The New York–based artist Andrew Erdos combines glass sculpture, video, performance, and sound to explore the intersection of culture, technology, and nature. He says, “In my work, there is a complex series of relationships happening; I am trying to explore all the possible caveats of an idea.” Erdos’s art is pop, sarcastic, and bold in the sense that it is fearless. He uses traditional glassblowing techniques and well-known glass effects—such as the infinity mirror—to create distinctive, nontraditional environments and narratives.
In this sculpture, a two-way mirrored box contains fantastic beings blown out of mirrored glass, with applied glass bits that have an iridescent coating, which is called dichroic glass. Erdos chose not to include video, which he often uses to infuse light and color into an environment. Instead, he combined thousands of pieces of colored murrine with LED light to create a situation of sensory overload, a setting of hyper-beauty.
Erdos has always used protagonists in his work. A costumed, anonymous Santalope, a trickster in the form of a hybrid horned Santa, was a character who appeared in Erdos’s early videos. This work was essentially pastoral in nature, reflecting the artist’s location in western New York State. More recently, the urbanized Erdos makes use of a cartoonish, scary-sweet mouselike cybercreature, a fantastic yet naive being, to negotiate a disorienting and visually cacophonous world. It is hard to tell if Erdos is leading the viewer in a direction that is post-apocalyptic or kitsch, and it is this confusion—a clash of opposites—that he exploits in his symbolic narratives. Erdos’s titles often refer to time, ghosts, or nature, and his vision is essentially a dystopian one, but tempered with empathy, humor, and wonder.