"Born in Oregon, much of the creative inspiration I drew from early in life was rooted in the awe I have for the natural world. The forest, the mountains, the ocean - overwhelming visual stuff that makes everything that man does seem small and insignificant - it’s the stuff the Romantics of the late 18th/early 19th Century called “the sublime”. I remember this feeling long before I had ever heard about the sublime - driving along the Columbia River Gorge, age 10, viewing a distant mountain formation that clearly began far beneath the Earth’s surface and extended up from the river, diagonally, a few miles, a few thousand feet up in the air. I thought, that mountain has been there for millions of years and will be here for millions more, yet I, a tiny mammal at its base for a few minutes, am contemplating its massivity, dynamic shape and endurance and I am impressed by it - how absurdly pitiful and yet extraordinary this act of perceiving and appreciating the mountain is. Later I read how that was an experience of “the sublime” - something beyond mere beauty - elemental, iconic and primordial. Bizarrely, it seemed to me later in life when I began to appreciate modernist art, this experience of the sublime can occur even with something man-made if it is a similarly distilled essence of a form (however it may be perceived - e.g., music, or a taste of exquisite food, or even a smell)."
Sunday, September 15, 2013
Unearthing an artist's statement - didn't know I had one!
I'm getting my résumé together, and discovered that my "commercial" web site ( www.rolfsjogren.com ) has an empty link to a "bio". I sorta remember a bio I wrote for my last job, so I searched my computer. Instead, I found the below, which I think I wrote in 2008 or 2009, but I happen to still like fairly well. Reading it and looking at the ceramic pieces I've made since then, it strikes me as, shall we say, "illuminatingly dissonant". If I draw inspiration from the natural world, a notion originated by the Romantics, it strikes me as odd, but no less authentic, that my sculpture is totally abstract and often geometrically obsessed: