Jordin Caudill

Artist Statement


This work is a three-dimensional exploration of the formalist issues addressed in early Modernist painting, specifically geometric abstraction and color filed painting. The influence from these movements comes from their established ideas on the purity of shape in construction and the effects of color. My investigation is in how that visual language came to guide a mechanical and utilitarian outlook on design.


By deconstructing, repurposing, and reforming practical objects the work brings into question the idealized notions of design and household structures. Through the use of formal elements I am creating an interruption in the idea that form follows function. In these works form reforms function. What was once a chair, intended for sitting, is now dismantled, projecting out from the wall, mocking its intended design and purpose, as a quasi-simulated sculpture installation.


All of the materials I use are refuse items, discarded and abandoned, donated, excess, or surplus. The materials determine the form. My material criteria are due to repurposing. If a material is bought new it reinforces utilitarian objectives, which is what I am negating. The utilization of weaving and sewing in the construction of textiles are also part of my practice. The repetitive actions of cutting, threading, printing, shredding, weaving, knotting etc, are all aspects of an early Modernist design ideology that the hand should be an extension of the machine in production. In addition to the three dimensional aspect of this work, there is a printed component. Pattern, resembling a textile, is silkscreened and presented alongside a woven material. The print imitates the design and is produced by hand. Although it has the look of interlacing motifs, it is entirely removed from the process of weaving a patterned fabric. This action mirrors the systems and outcomes of the three-dimensional devices, adding another layer to the removed function of the pieces.


My work is a controlled dysfunction, through a formalist lens, of the domestic space, and the objects that occupy that space. The work is a representation of the removal of an object, physically and contextually, from a domestic dwelling. I then deconstruct the object further by removing the function, and then reassemble it with other household parts, some simulated, to create a reformed object or installation with a detached use.