Artwork

"A Second Home" / Dennis Maher

2016
Dennis Maher, "A Second Home", 2016
Views
Identifier

IWC.2016.11

Materials

architectural salvage, construction materials, antique furnishings, toys, architectural models, video projections, audio

Artist Statement
"A Second Home" transforms the Mattress Factory row house at 516 Sampsonia Way into a mysterious wonderland that cleaves, intermingles, and collages a house's physical and metaphysical counterparts. Saturated with construction materials, furnishings, toys, architectural models, video projections, and audio elements, the resulting immersive environment—encompassing all three floors of the building—fosters the emergence of a radically interior world: one that dreams of memories that it has never had, conjures the places that it has always wanted to be, and draws its own magic out of the grains of the woodwork.

The fragments that compose the installation appear simultaneously as suspended in time and as continuously evolving, while the multitude of layers, assembled views, and variously scaled vignettes coalesce in ways that parallel the construction of the psyche. While synthesizing tools, devices, and artifacts from the past that is both known and unknown, "A Second Home" gives these components a new context in the present and projects them forward into the future. 

Aspects of the house will continue to transform over the next two years, with projects realized in collaboration with the Mattress Factory Education Department and involving students of architecture from University of Buffalo and Carnegie Mellon University.

"A Second Home" features unique contributions from Miriam Devlin, Kate Joyce, Michael Koliner and Racheljoy Rodas, four Pittsburgh-area artists whose work engages the construction of environments; as well as special projects by Daniel Salomon and Cameron Neuhoff; furniture elements by the Society for the Advancement of Construction Related Arts (SACRA); and a soundscape composed for and from the house by Dubravka Bencic and Kevin Bednar. In addition, the house's walls are enlivened and enriched by extraordinary objects culled from the private collections of the Mattress Factory's original inhabitants, co-directors Barbara Luderowski and Michael Olijnyk.

Scott Bye has provided construction assistance for this project.

Special thanks to Barbara Luderowski, Michael Olijnyk, Owen Smith, Adam Welch, Nate Lorenzo, Kevin Clancy, Mattie Cannon, Anna-Lena Kempen, Chuck Schmidt, Elizabeth Saleh, the Mattress Factory Board of Directors, staff and museum members.

Generous support has been provided by ARAD, an Anonymous Donor, the Benter Foundation, Culture Ireland, Foster Charitable Trust, The Heinz Endowments, National Endowment for the Arts, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, and the Roy A. Hunt Foundation.
 
 
About the Artist
Dennis Maher is an artist, architect, educator and founder/director of FARGO HOUSE, Buffalo. His projects engage processes of disassembly and reconstitution through drawing, photography, collage and constructions. His Undone-Redone City project reformulates the remains of houses, conjuring a new urban core from assembled fragments. He has exhibited throughout the U.S. and was 2012-2013 Artist In Residence at Albright-Knox Art Gallery. He is Assistant Professor of Architecture, SUNY Buffalo.
August 12, 2016 - August 12, 2019
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