Julian Hoeber

Artist in Residence, 2017

Artist Statement

Throughout my practice, I have worked on various projects to produce disorienting phenomenological experiences. Much of what drives my practice is a search for ways to exceed the limits set by opposing ideas such as organic and inorganic, structured and chaotic, conceptual and expressive. Most of my work is an attempt to reconcile the sides of these oppositions. For the last several years I have been using design and architecture as a way to explore these themes. One way I’ve done this is by combining the vocabulary of vernacular structures, like funhouses, with that of Modernism and Minimalism to make a rational structure produce irrational responses. I strive to show how the discursive, exploratory process of design, as well as its final product, alter and reflect the processes of the mind and body.

While at Headlands

For the past few years, I have been working on a project called “Going Nowhere,” which is centered on the design of a labyrinthine architectural folly meant to produce rumination. The point of this project is to create and then solve an infinite set of problems, acting as a metaphor for the radical potential of introspection.

By the very nature of my project, I want to go into the residency not entirely knowing what I’m doing. “Going Nowhere” thrives on that kind of chance to be surprised by my surroundings and the results of my own tinkering. A residency—particularly at a place as beautiful as the Headlands, surrounded by the sort of brilliant people who have been there in the past—strikes me as the ideal setting to spur experimentation.