Their use fascinate me enough to include and accidentally link to classicalism and colour theory. For example, yellow ratchet straps are fantastic when they are constricting and fighting for dominance with another material. This because the colour yellow is the weakest pigment when blending colours to paint with, as is the same with printing; yellow will be the first pigment to be drained when trying to compete and blend with black, cyan, and magenta. To use a yellow material for its physical strength and sturdiness, it creates this sense of conceptual fragility to a sculpture.
MF: What is the process of your sculptures and assemblages?
JA: Often when I have ideas and materials in my head and hand I tend to work with people around me (often artist’s friends) in collaboration. I find the energy bouncing from one to another’s discovery or making will multiply with the help of a third eye. It is like breaking the law in public, if you do it alone you’re scared but with your friends it’s fun. That’s what I enjoy about collaboration. The lack of artistic ego is funny, when someone has made an entire work not for himself but for the other architect which is often the case with my collaboration ‘Earnest and Son.’ Working solo as an artist it’s easy to fall in love with this genius idea you have created in your mind, but working within a healthy collaboration with other professionals and makers makes it easy to comb out all the complexities and problems when physically creating a visual work. In particular I find this collaborative way of working any artistic ego you still hold on to as an artist cowers in a way that lets me personally see the larger visual of my works rather than concentrating on specific detail that first feed the works. We have agreed between us to have no ego when making artwork, and with that there is more play and freedom when making the final result. My closest collaborative team can often work with me in silence, communicating in large smiles, hand signals of a truck stop and walking away with a naughty grin when something completely topples. Everyone needs a little time off from making when a work is going full steam. Once we regale from our mistakes and jokes we include these within the final work as much as it can be fittingly possible. This enforces a sense of preciousness which we see within DIY aesthetics. It’s our love for undermining high performance culture while having a joke to make an object so visually pleasurable and conceptually thoughtful.
MF: Does site play an important role in the outcomes of your work?
JA: Yes an incredibly important role. My relationship with making is only limited by site. Say if there is a window within the space i’ll treat it very differently to a space without a window, such as my show at Cut Thumb in West End which was a yard and shed. An interesting site will always be my first material if I can call it that. At Cut Thumb I had an immediate reaction and challenge to put something in the shed that fit. It’s too tempting to put a small work in the shed and large one outside, so I treated the shed as part of the work rather than holding something inside it like a conventional gallery. On the other hand, through the making process I accidently find links between the materials I use and for me these materials inherit a life they once had before using them for art. I started with the palms and hill hoists as ways to begin the work from where these two types of materials were placed on site. I wanted the viewer to see them beyond the confines of the property.
The neighbours had corrugated iron, Alexander palms next to the shed and being Brisbane all neighbours in their backyards had practicing hills hoists as if they were yard shrines to their delicates. The next concern was to conduct the audience through the site and space. While I was consciously lining up where the works would be placed i’d try and understand the relationship with the water tank and the long grass more than the art inserts already. The floorplan became a knit of tangles from the haphazard electrical cord both giving line and continuation of the installation but functional power to all works. This peculiar site at Whynot St lead my attention to where the most difficult areas of the site were - the dead tree and thriving bush at the back, the unkept grass, the broken hill hoist and dangerously low ceiling heights all invited some change. The success of the under house work that consisted of a fluoro bulb, a pink pool noodle inflation device, zip ties and wine flutes, sat very happy in the exact home it would have. The piece fell and was remeasured many times but the satisfaction of balance and tension directly between site, material and the viewers precaution is exactly what a small ceiling that holds a large home overhead, contrasting with two crystal champagne flute butting a floppy pool noodle trying to even mimic sadly the reinforced concrete pillars nearby.
MF: What kind of experiences do you hope the audience will get from viewing your work?
JA: I hope the audience take the work with a pinch of salt, that way when they spend some time with it (if they do) they might be able to grab a few of the free puns and references I make to the site or in a larger position to Australian suburbs. Funnily enough I’ve been asked several times about the darts by the audience which I find fascinating. All but one were not on a game target. The one I threw on the target (I threw it genuinely from practicing) landing just bottom right of the bulls eye - a metaphor like that had to be included in the show.
Article written by Mel Fletcher
Text by Mel Fletcher 2016
Images © Jordan Azcune
Jordan Azcune is an assemblage artist studying in Brisbane. Naturally his work takes many weird and wonderful forms, collated from collaboration, environment and parody. Heavily influenced by his surroundings, Jordan Azcune ties, balances, restricts and pairs such materials as plants, pool noodles, bungee ties and fluorescent lights.
Words by Mel Fletcher
MF: Where do you draw your inspiration from and how is it used in your work?
JA: For me ideas recycle and that’s why I thrive on parody and pastiche. If you read, look, collect; they are all ways to simulate your ideas and interests at that moment, but none has the potency of living that of what you enjoy, as cliché as it is. I’m sure I have gotten more ideas creatively through a game of competitive badminton than I have reading the Oxford History of Art, even though I devour that knowledge too. Humorously there seems to be in my practice a balance of conceptual aesthetic details and hard-hitting political ideas I share simultaneously but neither have full dominance over the final assemblage work. My recent fixation with U.S.S.R. is epitomised in Faberge eggs and the symbolism of the Hammer and Sickle, and those two true obsessions are enough to amuse myself playing within the Australian history and landscape I live. The materials I use themselves could not come further from imperial luxe; but rather simply from blue collar materials.