Gift Science

Construction in wooden box: slides, mirrors, moving lights, paint, bird. 41.25" x 15/5" x 5". 1964.

Gift Science is an assemblage incorporating simple gifts within an abandoned window box. Daniel Spoerri on his visit to NYC in 1964 brought the heat sensitive glass radiometer. My companion James Tenney, offered the large glass slides of computations and prints of an Edgar Varese score. Erro gave the gift of a small stuffed bird; from Arman– a science toy of curved blades turning when heated by a light.

Gift Science continued my use of motors and kinetic elements (begun in 1963 with Four Fur Cutting Boards), composing fragile moving elements and small lights within the fractured mirror glass. These mirrors were angled to capture the viewer's own presence, and to reflect continuously changing refractions which illuminate the glass interiors.

The gifts were indicative of a comradely respect which was unusal for a young woman artist to experience in those years. The gifts indicate the richness of exchange between artists of Paris and New York at that time. - Carolee Schneemann, 1996