robert sherer / galleries / blood works (1997-present)

blood works (1997-present)

The Conceptual: Botanical illustration and sexuality are intertwined. Flowers are the beautiful genitals of plants. Beauty is an intangible - sex organs are a tangible. Love is an ideality - sex is a reality. For me, the edge where the real and the ideal meet is the most I can ever expect from any experience, whether it be the pursuit of art or the pursuit of a romantic relationship. Ultimately, the subject matter of this series concerns the complexities of romantic life and sexual attraction in the age of AIDS.

The Technical:
One evening, while trying to remove the blade from an X-Acto razor, it slipped from my hand and stuck straight up in my thigh. When I removed the blade from my leg, a red geyser shot into the air. I must have hit an artery. I quickly collected the squirting liquid in a hermetic container and placed it in the refrigerator. The next day, when I attempted to use it as a drawing medium I found that the pigment instantly coagulated in my quill pen. After some experimentation and consultation with a medical technician, I suspended the liquid in a thinning solution, which helps it to smoothly flow.
 Soon after creating my first, drawing in the series I discovered another setback to my medium: when it dries it darkens to brown within a day. It took several weeks of experimentation with sealers and varnishes before I found the best combination to preserve the sanguine freshness of my pigment. I now draw the HIV- blood from my arm with new clean syringes. The HIV+ blood used in some of the artworks is supplied by a friend who wishes to remain anonymous.

from the Artist Statement for the Triennale Internationale d'Art Contemporain, Toit de la Grande Arche, Paris, France - 2002.

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