82b) Metamorphosis-Gretchen Larsen

Patron: Exstrom Physical Therapy

The plan for Metamorphosis would be to turn the heart onto its side, and use additional plastic molding materials to build out a toad, using the heart shape as a base.  The toad would be composed of both natural and non-natural materials and will be definitely built in conjunction with 5-17 year old youth at The Bay. The project will include an exploration of materials, using entirely found objects to create texture and pattern.

Toads are native to Nebraska, but also they are sort of delightfully imperfect forms, something you don’t associate with love which if often thought of in an idealized form.  Love, real love, is gritty, dirty, and tough.  Loving someone day in and day out, is not easy.  Loving ourselves day in and day out isn’t easy.  Love is messy, and dirty, and also delightfully, incredibly wonderful.

I may be unknown to some of you.  I am not a traditional artist.  I am 26 and I am not certain what I am.  I am determined to tell you some essential pieces of me, and convince you that I will do well by this giant, wonderful piece of heart-shaped plastic.

I am from Lincoln.  I went to Boston for college and moved back to Lincoln two years ago.  Since I’ve been back I have dove into the “tech world” working at tech startups in the downtown area, teaching coding to girls at Park Middle School, and working with Arts and Humanities students doing community art projects.

I am very interested in the intersection of art and technology.  I recently completed a 50 foot crocodile at Turbine Flats.  It was a project that I dreamed up and worked on last winter, for fun.  I had open studio days every Saturday where I invited kids from the neighborhood to come and build (and play) with me.  All the materials were found objects, and the crocodile also incorporated technology in the form of a Bare Conductive Chip, which accepts inputs (much like a midi-controller).

I love primarily to build things with people.  I have begun conversations with The Bay, and intend to build the heart together with young people.  The crocodile was my most recent, formal collective art-making endeavor.

I am involved in a number of different initiatives in Lincoln.  I am a docent at Sheldon and and I hope you will check out my website, www.gretch.in and consider me for this wonderful, exciting opportunity to build something with people – and to have some support in that important effort!