Artist installs “Early Hatch” at CU-ICAR

Professor Joey Manson and visual arts major David Lamm installing Manson's sculpture.

Professor Joey Manson and visual arts major David Lamm installing Manson’s sculpture.

There’s a new sculpture installation on the grounds of CU-ICAR, thanks to art professor Joey Manson. At the invitation of CU-ICAR, Manson and visual arts major David Lamm installed Manson’s sculpture, “Early Hatch,” in February. Manson, who works with industrial material, found a complementary home for his work, which he describes as “an exploration of our built, social and environmental constructs.”

“Early Hatch,” created from concrete and steel, captures one point in a cycle, according to Manson. “Larva emerges from an egg in order to collect the resources necessary to close the circle by building a cocoon, emerging as a moth and finally laying new eggs. The form of the concrete base refers to the eggs and the circular curling form is the larva. The vertical figurative elements are disruptions in this cycle.”

Manson spent many years working in New York City for museums, galleries and artists before teaching at Clemson. As part of his senior seminar class, Manson guides students through an intense four-day trip to NYC, exposing them to present and past visual artists.

Manson’s sculpture at CU-ICAR is only his latest campus collaboration. He co-teaches the Atelier InSite class focusing on public art on campus, including the installation at the Life Sciences building. His work can be seen outside of Sirrine Hall and inside the Strom Thurmond Institute.


Q&A: Joey Manson

Where are the top 3 to 5 places where you’ve had or currently have work?

Manson: Chicago is a city that is very supportive of the arts and sculpture in particular. I’ve shown sculptures in six public art exhibitions hosted by Chicago in the last three years. I’ve also shown in Stamford CT, San Angelo TX, and Ames IA, in the past year. Commission work supports my studio practice and I’ve installed permanently sited works in Skokie IL and Chattanooga TN in the past two years. Tell me about the partnership with CU ICAR. What’s the history?

How did it come about?

Manson: I began a partnership with ICAR with the Art Department’s foundations course which I teach. We sited different cardboard sculptures the foundations students created throughout the interior of ICAR for several years running. We also received a BMW car chassis which we had the foundations class collectively design and paint the exterior of in the spirit of BMW’s well known Art Cars. This chassis was exhibit in front of Lee hall for some time.

Will art students be a part of the installation? If so, why is it important for them participate? What will they learn?

Manson: There’s at least one student I may ask if the’d like to be involved in the install. Participation in exhibition installations is an important learning experience for students who will be showing their own work as professional artists upon graduation.

Tell me about the math, physics, science or engineering elements that play into making/installing the sculpture.

Manson: “Early Hatch”began as simple sketches, however to work out specific details final drawing were produced in CAD. The engineering problems involved in building this sculpture are not terribly complex. It is the questions related to the industrial and environmental themes of the sculpture itself and how the viewer relates are more important.

Tell me about the sculpture. What inspired you to create it. Why is it significant to the CU ICAR location?

Manson: Automotive Technology has a tremendous impact on the environment, my studio efforts looks to both industrial and environmental interests, and I utilize industrial construction methods to create my work.

What have you done to promote visual arts and sculpture at Clemson?

Manson: Atelier InSite, a creative inquiry course focusing on the implementation of Public Art at Clemson University, is a course I co-teach with Dave Detrich and Denise Detrich. This course is about promoting visual arts within our community at Clemson.

Joey’s on-campus sculpture outside of Sirrine