Jo Sandman’s artwork Continuities, made between 1992 and 1994, may seem simplistic at first, but there is more to enjoy the more you think about it. Sandman works with many materials that some might hesitate to call viable for making art, which is already one level of interest. These materials can be anything from insulating tape to tin foil or caulk. In the case of this artwork, Sandman uses radiator hoses and plaster. She bends the radiator tubes into various curves and shapes, with no two elements being the same in form or length. While the materials alone are interesting to think about, both in their general use and how they play with a viewer’s expectations, there is another quirk to how the work functions.
Because all the individual segments are disconnected from one another with no singular layout specified by Sandman, a curatorial team gets to make decisions about almost every aspect of how they are displayed. From how many, to where, to how one hose will cross, touch, or run next to another, anything that was not left set in plaster by the artist is up to the discretion of the curatorial team and what they see the work as being able to accomplish. Because so much is left outside of the direct influence of the artist, it is almost as though the work is constantly being remade with many people being added to list the of those “making” the piece. This open and continuous creativity makes the piece feel playful and whimsical, which many may find to be a warm invitation into Sandman’s creative world to continue that creative process.
—Jared Hedges, fall 2021 curatorial preparation intern