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  • Dead Wire

    *Alibi Studio (Catie NEWELL), "Dead Wire."
    detroit MICHIGAN

    Dead Wire is a spatial interruption into the extensive copper wire scrapping industry of Detroit. . . .

    Copper is a precious and valuable metal in Detroit. It is currently the king of metals in the ever-growing local scrapping industry making its theft frequent and widespread. Its loss brings great detriment to both public and private services leaving citizens with no power and streets with no lights. To hunt for the wire comes with great risk. Electrified lines assure injury and possible death. A proven crime leads to imprisonment. But to be the last to find a dead wire is to be the foolish rookie. Its collection and return provides wealth.

    An excellent conductor, the energy flows easily across its composition making electricity an affordable commodity. Materially speaking it is beautiful and rich in color — radiant in its reflection of light, and ductile in rather thin strands it is capable of holding form and drawing a line in space. Although arguably a believable desire, the metal is not being stolen for its beauty.

    Dead Wire is an obsessive material collection that presents a temporary spatial world that is made possible through the theft of copper wire. The copper has been scraped, stripped and twisted to create the delicate strands. Exploiting its physical composition through over-twisting the wire, Dead Wire is composed of numerous copper strains configured into delicate and erratic lines. Leaving a darken Detroit behind, the work is hung suspended in the air reminiscent of the electrical lines in the city. The copper spills out of the lines and drapes down in long coiled lengths, never daring to touch the floor. The details are both delicate and aggressive, designating a space and creating a rich and metallic atmosphere. The density of the texture varies, amassing into a larger shroud.

    While the overall weight of the wire will determine monetary value in the scrapping world, composition and quantity will determine spatial value.

    Lille3000 Commissioned designers and artists from Detroit to make an exhibition about the Renaissance occurring in that city.

    Additional credits and links:
    Assistants: Lindsey Petersen, Joe Proper, Dan Sebaldt, Carolyn Newell.

    Dead Wire:
    Lille, France
    Gare Saint Sauveur
    Lille3000. Renaissance, Detroit.

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