William Lamson | Excavations | Vote Code 63580 | Jurors’ Shortlist finalist in the Three-dimensional category

Brooklyn, NY
Three Dimensional
Mixed Media 2016

Artist Statement

“Excavations” is an intervention into the concrete foundation around 341 Franklin street. Using a diamond saw, I will score, grind and cut entirely through the slab, lifting out blocks and repositioning them around the site. Formally, these structures may read like minimalist sculpture or an architectural echo of the buildings that used to occupy this site. At the same time, the adjacent holes of exposed earth left from the removal of the concrete will eventually become activated as weeds start to grow in this long dormant soil. In “Excavations,” the entire site is a latent material, that through cutting, marking and relocating sections of the slab, will be transformed from an overlooked space into a site of uncertain potentiality.

Reflexión del Artista

Excavations es una intervención en los cimientos de concreto que se encuentran alrededor de Franklin Street, 341. Usando una sierra diamantada, voy a marcar, moler y cortar a través de la losa, levantando bloques y volviéndolos a colocar alrededor del lugar. Formalmente, estas estructuras se podrán interpretar como una escultura minimalista o un eco arquitectónico de los edificios que solían ocupar este lugar. A la vez, los agujeros adyacentes de tierra expuesta que queden luego de la remoción del concreto con el tiempo se activarán a medida que comience a crecer hierba en este suelo que ha permanecido inactivo durante tanto tiempo. En Excavations, todo el lugar es material latente que mediante el corte, marcado y reubicación de secciones de la loza se transformará y pasará de ser un espacio ignorado a un lugar de potencial incierto.


In my work I use elemental forces, utilitarian structures and mythological narratives as material to create durational performative actions. In some works I am the subject, directly performing in front of the camera. In others, I work through the materials to create a platform in which an experiment or an experience will occur. In either case, the properties inherent to the material dictate its form; once the material is chosen, I submit my agency to these parameters. Plants grow, a line is drawn, I stand and fall. Through such simple actions and the necessary collaboration with forces outside of my control, my work explores systems of knowledge and belief.

This project was supported through an Artist Seed Grant from the Frey Foundation