PETER DECAMP HAINES
Peter DeCamp Haines grew up in Ohio and is a graduate of the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Massachusetts. He is a founding member of the Boston Sculptors Gallery and a co-founder of the Vermont Gentlemen’s Foundry. Haines is known for his Artifacts- pure forms- favoring geometry, the compound curve, negative space and clean silhouettes. The images range from tools to architecture to stylized animals and humans. In total, these objects comprise a “personal archaeology”.
ARTIST STATEMENT – The Object is the Idea
I am a maker of objects, and the object itself is the main idea in my sculpture. For 30 years, I have been working on a project that consists of a collection of minimal, tool-like bronzes- now numbering in the hundreds. Metaphorically, I think of this work as “An Archaeology” of the subconscious. Artifacts have been a continuing thread in my work since I found my first one (an axe) in a dream around 1975. Simple, elegant, refined – they seem to me to be simultaneously archaic and modern. Metaphorically, I think of these objects, now numbering in the hundreds, as an ‘archaeology’ of the subconscious. They are made for the hand as well as for the eye. Simple shapes elaborate into complexity. Images (humans, animals, architecture, tools ) inevitably appear. I think that this is the projection of the warm subconscious onto the cool geometry of elemental forms.
On another level, the artifacts are studies of archetypal forms which can be elaborated into more complex images. An advantage of sculpture is that ideas such as wholeness, beauty, timelessness can be expressed without words. One of the elements of this wordless expression is negative space. A doughnut is defined by its hole. If one accepts space as part of the doughnut, where does the doughnut end? Thus the doorways, windows, silhouettes of my sculptures can suggest an area larger than the sculpture itself.
Since Marcel Duchamp in the 1930’s, ideas about sculpture have proliferated in countless directions, from Andy Warhol to Nam June Paik. My own pursuit has been a continuing exploration of the formal attributes of sculpture: form, scale, negative space, composition.