The Venture Series
The Chairs project
The Venture Series

This ongoing series, begun in 1978, coalesced around three factors of interest: First, a quote from Martin Heidegger’s Introduction to Metaphysic, discovered when the artist was an undergraduate in 1965, about the creative person always being “in venture.” Second, the appearance of black and white slashes as photographed from a bicycle in cautionary road signs and barriers in the 1970s. Third, the appearance and subsequent disappearance of the Venture discount store chain in St. Louis, which used a black and white slash as its logo.

In addition to sculptures on the Venture theme, the artist photographed a number of Venture stores in the St. Louis area, drawing attention to the black and white slashes found on the exteriors as well as the huge signs and parking lots marking the sites.

A number of wall sculptures explored the relationship between venturing into “the unknown” while constrained by a dualistic or extreme thought process (black or white, one or zero, either-or, hot or cold, good or bad, etc.), and “the logo“ or sign used to call attention to itself.

Incised lines, having the appearance of a fabric-like weave pattern, were cut into the black and white painted surfaces in an attempt to unite the black and white extremes. The configuration of each piece evolved from unrelated earlier work. In some works, the interior is painted a muted red.