50-foot-long wood periscope with mirrors
Water trough, pump, hose, pipes and running water
Half-sphere of grass
Blue velvet cloth
Found statue and vitrine
1995, altered 1996
A brief description of the piece: A 50-foot-long and 16 x 16-inch wide periscope winds through the gallery, making 10 turns. The viewer can sit at a chair and peer through the periscope at an image at the end which appears to be deep inside the wall. A pair of binoculars can be used to magnify the image. At the other end is a fragmented scene: rain, grass, sky. The view through the periscope is limited so that the tank and pipe system are not visible. Outside the gallery on the sidewalk is a 30-inch-high decaying statue that was found in a thrift store. A women appears to be escaping with her two children. They are carrying wheat in their arms. The statue is on a base of wood and steel and encased in a plexiglas container that is open at the top to the elements. The statue is partially flooded with water, which will accumulate during the length of the exhibition.
The principal form in The Study of Rain is a deep tunnel that provides a focus for vision, yet also removes the object of sight and study from its larger environment and the mechanism that sustains it. In itself, the rain falling on the grass is mere phenomena without apparent meaning and having perhaps a certain aesthetic appeal. The action happens outside the field of vision.
The wider view is available from the outset so that the viewer is aware of the limitations brought about by the narrower field. An even larger outlook is physically manifested in the traces of erosion from water etched onto the surface of a statue standing outside the gallery of a woman fleeing with her children.