​​Curtis Ames

My creative and scholarly research has evolved out of an ongoing interest in concepts related to effort and achievement. Since 2013 I have organized my studio practice around minimal material manipulations or interventions, allowing a simple action to suggest a level of importance. Working across the disciplines of sculpture, painting, and video, I focus primarily on the ways in which material and procedural conditions define both form and content. Specific gestures have a certain kind of power, and within my work there is a casual and undemanding level of agency, suggestive of an inherent struggle against the pressures of success and a knowing resignation that comes with always falling short. I unbend aluminum, I preserve paint, I sand wood, I unstop doors. These uncomplicated and seemingly flippant maneuvers impart affect to otherwise static materials, allowing the resultantly understated artifacts of my creative process to serve as earnest observations and subtle critiques of artistic and social systems.