Studio Visit with Brett Swenson

by Sarah Chacich

- Strewn & Reignition, assembled & inspired by objects found in Dead Horse Bay, 2014  

- Outgrowth sculptures; floor pieces, treated lava rocks,  2016

- Cage kiln video, burnt sculptures in progress, 2016

- Salt experiment for model, in progress

- Siamese Conductor, in progress, Hydrospan, 2016


Walking into Brett Swenson's studio is similar to how I imagine it might feel to encounter the planet Earth for the first time in the year 5000. Bits of debris and offhandedly gathered and assembled minerals scatter the corner of his Red Hook studio.  Gone is the futility of the object- instead it has been replaced with shapeshifting nuance. I am guided through his space with his discreet commentary-  taking note of the way he imbues each new material experiment to allow a sort of poetic gesture in action to take place.  Each rock, shard of glass, or spark plug has been researched & painstakingly recreated with only subtle differences from the way the items originally looked, functioning like a testament to the fact life did exist on our planet at one point in time.