Ortiz, Virgil – “FALLD” Clay Sculpture
The pieces Virgil Ortiz has created an exceptional new series of pieces for “Taboo II: Fearless. Unshaken. Inspiring”. Virgil has focuses on various new topics of social commentary. Each piece is coil built, painted with wild spinach (black) and clay slips. This piece is entitled, “FALLD”. Virgil says of this piece:
“Growing up and living with ADD, dyslexia, Aspergers, or autism is an unimaginable personal and social challenge. During my time at Colorado College, I had the opportunity to learn from 15-year-old Foster what it’s like to live with these disorders. As a kid, he thought he was a failure. He showed me one of his own drawings which expressed how he felt about his failures. He saw himself as an extended figure, surrounded by the words, “falld”, meaning “failed”. This was an intense expression of his personal feelings and perception. He felt he had to pull himself up every day, so I put him at the top of the mountain, the apex of this piece. He loves to mountain climb, so that seemed appropriate. The other figures are carrying the weight of the world on their shoulders and at the same time, getting ready to toss Foster’s “drawing” away as he overcomes his feelings of failure to achieve personal success. I see him standing tall, beginning to enter a place of non-duality where the understanding of his neurodiversity can have its own meaning outside and separate of how and what it means to others.” Virgil Ortiz
The shape and the clay work become the “canvas” for this powerful story. The single figure on the lower edge is painted all black (wild spinach). The drawing he used by Foster is actually in relief in areas, as is much of the rest of the piece. It is not just flat surfaces, but angles and edges, some of which are so lightly raised they have to be felt, which give the piece added dimension. Just as the story of Foster finding his way forward, Virgil has painted this piece to draw your eye around and upward. It seems that in the end, it is uplifting both conceptually and visually. A piece which is both thought-provoking and timeless in concept and design.