Jeff Feld’s understanding of art practice is largely supported through the experiences he had as a social worker.
Social work requires the navigation of complex institutional and familial hierarchies and at times, working outside of them. Each intervention holds a unique set of circumstances which in turn presents an all-pervading risk of collapse.
In dealing with sculpture Feld co-opt referents from institutional and domestic environments that reflect the “make-do” and ritualized relationships we engage in every day. “Make do” describes a simple act, accommodation or belief that allows us to negotiate our experiences within the immanent present. Sponges, the cardboard box, signage and the like, elegant and abject, his sculptures embody the quotidian struggle of living. Examples of these would include the empty thank you, and religious iconography.
In using such referents the objects instill the viewer with a sense of familiarity and dislocation. The traditional use of the referent is emptied out, prioritizing a vacancy of definition and creating for the viewer a contingent opening with the opportunity for ad hoc interpretation. Feld’s work is not a critique but rather a distillation from observation and personal experience. He wants to both investigate and present how we navigate, sustain and at times re-evaluate the dissonant circumstances we confront every day