Inspired in equal measure by meme culture and global calamity, Fine With This consists of a series of monumental, cast iron letters that spell out the title of the work. FWT is perpetually aflame, but the audience can command it to exude great bursts of fire via Twitch streaming video chat. Indeed, the work is designed to be experienced both physically and virtually, promoting a conversation about armchair activism and the ways in which internet culture can have a concrete impact on real world events (e.g. pizzagate, the Capitol insurrection, and r/wallstreetbets).
This work is a collaboration between Kay Dartt, Taylor Hokanson, and Stephen Lee, and has been financially supported by grants from Columbia College Chicago and the National Conference on Contemporary Cast Iron Art & Practices (NCCCIAP). Special thanks go out to Flaming Lotus Girls, The Department of Spontaneous Combustion, Poofersupply, and KC Green.
Kay Dartt is a sculptor with an interdisciplinary practice that combines craft, design, engineering, and philosophy. The work she makes reflects how consumer behavior in western cultures is forcing an imbalance between the natural, artificial and virtual environments we interact with. Her aesthetics synthesizes biomorphic forms, consumer language and parametric design elements. Through this work she challenges cultural philosophies of living by creating functional sculptures that exaggerate issues of environmental imbalance.
No material or processes is restricted in Kay’s practice, but she is always engaged with metal casting. This passion for craft is fueled by the intrinsic nature of iron and engagement with the iron casting community. Currently she uses her practice to foster socially minded innovators and collaboratively fabricate objects that generate dialogue about current issues.
Taylor Hokanson is an Associate Professor of Art at Columbia College Chicago. Hokanson’s creative practice problematizes the social and technological systems we take for granted, by creating artwork that employs functionality and absurdity to explore an uncertain future. He has exhibited at Ars Electronica, SIGGRAPH, ISEA, and Techfest Mumbai, and can also be found on new media platforms like Github, LinkedIn Learning, and the Opposable Thumbs podcast, which he co-hosts.
Stephen Lee is a designer and educator with experience in brand, motion, and interactive design. Past clients include AT&T, Gatorade, Google, IBM, and Nike. He has taught at a number of institutions both within the United States and abroad in India, Mexico, Spain, and Peru. He received an MFA in Graphic Design and Integrated Media from CalArts. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Graphic Design at Portland State University. His research focuses on incorporating XR (extended reality) and other creative technology into a contemporary design practice.