A chaos of cracks surround us – Crystal McCormick


March 21- March 24, 2013

Artist Talk: March 21, 12:30 pm

Reception: March 23, 7-9 pm 

Cracked, broken, shattered; the walls threatened to come crashing down. Fragmentation, corrosion, decomposition, disintegration, rock creep, debris slides, mud-flow, avalanche were everywhere in evidence. The grey sky seemed to swallow up the heaps around us. Fractures and faults spilled forth sediment, crushed conglomerates, eroded debris and sandstone. It was an arid region, bleached and dried. An infinity of surfaces spread in every direction. A chaos of cracks surrounded us.[1]

In A Chaos of Cracks Surround Us McCormick creates an immersive installation that evokes both urban landscapes and natural forms. The work resembles a different time and space and creates an otherworldly feeling. This is a play on the interaction between reality and fantasy; a representation of landscapes situated in this world and of landscapes that reflect a fictional world.

McCormick’s arrangements of shapes and textures invite the viewer to move into a series of spaces and engage in observation. The installations are compiled of a dizzying array of materials including pieces of glass, wire, wood, plexi-glass, mirrors, plaster, cement, resin, drywall compound, diamond dust and other recycled materials. Beyond the formal and physical qualities of the material the choices are based in environmental concerns.

The cyclical movement of sand as a material is a central element throughout the work. Both cement and glass are composed of sand in a hardened state. Throughout the installation sand – as both glass and cement – exists in various states of construction and deconstruction. The fragility and strength of the materials change as they flow through various states and are manipulated and enacted upon by the artist. Materials are broken down into smaller units, reverting back to the original state, and reconstituting into new forms, representing a continuous cycle.

[1] Smithson, Robert, “The Crystal Land”, The Writings of Robert Smithson, ed. Nancy Holt, New York, New York University Press, 1979



Installation view A chaos of cracks surround us, 2013



Ruin, cement, mortar, paper, 2013



Emerald City, resin and glass, 2013




Oblivious, plaster, glass, plastic, 2013




Installation view: A chaos of cracks surround us, 2013




Crystal Mountain, plaster and glass, 2013



Installation view: Reality (reflected in mirror), plaster and ink, 2013




Twin Towers, cement and vermiculite, 2013




Installation view: Toxic Wasteland, glass, concrete, fluff, 2012 (left) and The Empire, glass, concrete, tar, plaster, 2012 (right)




Installation view (night time)  A chaos of cracks surround us, 2013




Crystal Mountain (night) plaster and glass, 2013