Indianapolis, Indiana 2012
Exhibition: “Couched Constructions” curated by Wes Janz
Gallery: Herron Gallery, Herron School of Art Indianapolis, Indiana
Sometimes a couch is just a piece of furniture and sometimes, through the eyes of a visionary, a couch becomes a source of alternative building materials, a commentary on our prodigious solid waste stream and a view into the lives of the most economically disadvantaged citizens of our city. Couched Constructions, challenges the viewer’s concept of the couch’s purpose.
Corporal Recovery was created by Paul Puzzello and his wife Oksana, where the bones of this street couch were exploited to emphasize the idea of the couch as a corporal instrument. Stripping the old cushion fabric and recognizing the aesthetic qualities of the original couch framework by its original designers and makers, formed concrete was applied using fabric material sewn together as the formwork or mold. Design decisions were guided by the existing couch structure giving careful consideration to edge detail and coverage as if to pattern a new cover and cushion in the tradition of furniture recovering. Concrete as a cushion material is of course an absurdity yet fabric forming technique reveals a sensuality and curvaceous surface that invites one to interact with the material with the form of the couch proportion as a relation to the body, sitting or laying. The articulation of the "frozen" fluidity of the cured concrete in its wet and "primal" state belie the semantics of concrete as a hard rectilinear surface; cold and utilitarian.