Master and Acolyte

Master and Acolyte / Ritual of Making
Matt Toole

10455846_10152513282295396_6147222314374779969_n 10489902_707940140875_7453485335187142232_n 10361031_10154247663345567_6052487809523119110_n

In cooperation with, George Beasley’s Basket Furnace Casting performance event to be held at Open-Air Art Museum at Pedvale, Sabile, Lativia. June 19 – 23, 2014.

The proposal for the night of performances at the Mid-Summer’s Night – Jani Celebration during the 7th International Conference on Contemporary Cast Iron Art is to construct a lever mechanism that will serve to deliver iron to George Beasley’s Iron Basket Furnace Casting project. The lever mechanism will serve to transport the molten iron from the basket furnace to the X mold that is set atop four large boulders.
The lever (acolyte) is a means to share knowledge symbolized by the iron. It is the go between from the furnace (master/ source) to the mold (relic). It serves as a metaphor to celebrate the sharing of knowledge that is prevalent in the cast iron subculture (Ferrous Communitas).

As an object in the performance composition, along with the furnace and mold, it will provide choreographed movement to engage the workers (at mold and furnace) in the ritual of making. The lever becomes an integral component of the live event as it moves molten iron throughout the performance space.
After the event, the lever will serve as a post-industrial reference to the event that created the Iron X. It will serve as a kinetic component that shifts at certain times throughout the year. Additionally, the performance space may be used annually, during the solstice, to produce a semi-permanent, ever-changing object that builds on itself for years to come. The space then becomes an active ritual site that is dormant throughout the year until the annual Ritual of Making is reprised again and brought to life.

My interest in this event is to further research creative rites and rituals in response to unique cultural environments. Every culture produces art in a manner that is unique to their region and often based in myth, legend, and historical fact. And yet all cultures create objects and images in a universal humanistic manner that is consistent throughout the world. It is consistent with the evolution of human creative endeavors and fills a particular desire in the minds and hearts of Makers, no matter the cultural influence.