Tide Tables, 2013
Tide Tables combines an exploration of memories of the California and Rhode Island coasts with reflections on erosion and change and natural and economic disasters.
I never checked the tide tables until I lived on Old Mill Cove.
I loved the whale rocks, the hole-filled boulders my sister named, the amusement park graveyard just beyond. I walked for miles, boots crunching on the white shell beach, past the ruins of old stone foundations, houses swept away.
Once, it was mine alone, for hours at a time.
There is a path and a parking lot now. Trash litters the rocks. I wish I had never come back, never known what it has become.
Tide Tables begins with powerful memories of place. The artist paid attention to the tide tables for the first time when living on the coast in Rhode Island, because for the first time, it mattered. At low tide, she could walk for miles. At high tide, kayak in shallow waters. Tide Tables is in part, the story of exploring that coast. It is in part, the story of retrieving and exploring those memories and from them moving to reflections on environmental and economic change and disaster.
Tide Tables was the first in Greene’s Reflections series of large wall sculptures - place based explorations incorporating memories and reflections on history, economic, social and environmental change. Other works in the series include Conversation over the Fjords, Ducking Under Bridges and Underwater.
I write with fire. Fragments of memory and reflection tumble forth and find new form, now etched in steel. Faster than my thoughts, I release the trigger, pause, and then race on.
The text is composed without revision, in place at the welding table, torch in hand, each fragment leading to the next. A dervish, I am just able to capture each word’s loops and dots and dives, unable to linger. I’ll quickly bite through my thin canvas, if I hesitate or even slow.
The series is an exploration of and an experiment with time, with extreme juxtapositions of past and present. I mine a half a century for memories, my own and others’, linking across generations. My subject matter stretches the past much further, evoking geological timescales. But I demand a process which is sharply present.
I write those thoughts which flow together at the moment I stand at the table. I write one and then the next. I cannot erase or amend. Like a Chinese painter with horsehair brush and ink, I have chosen a tool where timing matters dearly. The slightest hesitation shows in the character of my lines, in the width and depth and the spatter of molten steel.
Tide Tables was exhibited at NYC’s Spring Masters art fair and Todd Merrill’s NYC gallery and has appeared in The Economist and the Magazine Antiques.
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