Back in 2013, I saw a picture of James Wines’ Ghost Parking Lot and it unlocked a rush of childhood memories. For the first seven years of my life, I lived in Hamden, Connecticut, a suburb of New Haven, and I would see Wine’s work, older model cars covered in asphalt looking like they were both rising up and being swallowed under by the parking lot of our grocery store. When I saw the photo, it all made sense — my fascination with asphalt as a material and my desire for the unusual in everyday contexts.
A similar memory jog occurred in 2010 when Jonathan Lippencot published Large Scale, a history of the Lippencott sculpture production center. Also in the New Haven area, the factory’s grounds became an unofficial sculpture park and the site of family walks. My dad tells me I saw versions of Oldenburg’s Lipstick (Ascending) on Caterpillar Tracks there. I can’t remember it, but I do know that I am inexplicably drawn to very, very large sculpture. (And it’s never big enough.)
We lived modestly in Hamden. My dad was a newspaper reporter. We drove an old car with a hole in floor.
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