ANDREA DAVIDE Talks About This Gear Art Sculpture
The “RoundTimer” is the signature component incorporated into many of Davide’s interactive, kinetic sculptures. Highly engineered and designed, on first sight, they appear to be clocks or timepieces, but they are not. A timepiece is a time keeping device though we can neither keep time nor can’t hold on to it, it passes away from us. The possessions of our lives, even artifacts of past events, rest in our hands seemingly for an instant and fall away, most lost forever, like the passing moment. RoundTimers respond to these eternal truths: each cog, gear, spring, each unnamed element, retrieved from memory and service, can no long participate in noting time’s passage but binds within itself the lives and intentions of its designers, makers and original possessors. Davide positions these elements, mechanical artifacts, and found objects, some anonymous, some with specific embedded histories, in a new, framed and secured relationship, with sympathetic formed supports and ties, bestowing linkage and context. Glass, brass, polished hubs, dowels and pinions, gears, and couplings, all conveying function, perhaps trying to keep time, but, without faces and hands, failing, as do we: they invite touching, turning, moving, as if fulfilling some unknowable purpose.
RoundTimers invite us to try to adjust them, to ascertain their means and mechanisms, their intent and direction. But without our intervention, they are essentially passive, timeless.
Made of brass and aluminum gears sandwiched between glass discs. Sometimes seated on a brass easel, easily picked up so as to invite interaction. Other times the RoundTimer is incorporated into larger metal or stone structures. This RoundTimer beckons/dares the viewer to pick it up, feel its perfect weight, and manipulate its multidirectional actions. This work is at once part of an industrial age long gone, while very much part of our present technological world; fresh and sleek
The overall size of the piece is reminiscent of the size of the typical time keeping device, but instead of an opaque face, Davide uses glass to laminate the heart of the work—the precisely constructed mechanism of cogs and gears collected from old clocks. Davide masterfully machines and manipulates her findings into a cohesive amalgamation of seemingly functional action. The utilitarian qualities of the brass finishes and transparent glass might give the notion that this should be looked at as nostalgia…and perhaps it should, as long as we know that without the past, we cannot fully consider the present.
The piece can be easily handled and securely swivels within its gibbous frame. This frame is like the kind that would hold the replica of Earth on a desktop in a 1970’s household, and, in a way, holds the same purpose for RoundTimer. Similar as the globe is the perceived reality for our planet, the RoundTimer rotates, suggesting dimension, but its innards are still flat and still lineal. Davide’s work shows that beauty can still be found in our failed conception of time, if one stops to take the time to inspect it.
The Kinetic Sculpture Artist