RYAN HAMMOND

Peripheral Arteries Interview

Artist Statement // 2013

It's so much easier to destroy things than to create them -- to create chaos and disorder than to create complexity. You're moving with the natural motion of the universe. In this sense, to imbue matter with information and organization means pushing against the motion of everything around you. A salmon swimming upstream. We are all attracted to each other because we follow this action in the world, to compile, to complex, to capture and preserve and collect and combine and compound. A minuscule, almost undetectable fraction of all that comprises the known physical universe pushing against the entirety of collapse and degradation, separation and isolation. We're all we have to look to when searching for relief. Everything outside life is dead, unconscious matter, being nothing, everything slowly leaving being. Life keeps itself. Life is a moment that perpetuates itself.


I want to engulf myself in new logic, non contextual logic, reactionary logic, mutated logic, logic that accepts accident and mistake as equal to conscious and calculative decision making. I want to cultivate a mind that decides to accept or believe that they come from the same place. As evolution moves, so will I.

EOE Publication

Harold - 1956

When I was young, I believed I could control the wind if I tried hard enough. I would push my fingers into the ground, and imagine that it opened up the cloud above me. It would collapse and the wind inside would spill out, spreading in all directions as it hit the ground. In my head it looked like a bucket of water pouring onto a flat surface. Sometimes I felt wind and the leaves on all the trees around me made a raucous sound. Other times there was no wind; I thought I wasn't trying hard enough.

written in Fall 2012 when making work as Harold Fisk

Missouri 1945 - by Sadie Wilson

The clouds fall from the sky and stick to the Mississippi as it slides into the sea. It saturates the land and the clouds saturate the air; everything is wet and it's all alive. At night the clouds gather in the fields, and mom sits in her chair breathing them in. Her skin is like the water and it moves outward with the same lightness. She's suspended in the dense swampy air, singing to the crops. Her legs hold her up and the soil holds them up as the immensity of the moon deforms the earth. As a rock it's lumpy and oddly shaped, hurtling around the earth - but from the field it's just a small circle of light. It moves silently over and the ground beneath it reaches up like plants reach for the sun. When it comes to the the space above my mother's head, it tugs at the ground beneath her feet and she is strung up close to it. Her back straight as a tall pine, her head resting above: For a moment her vertebrae separate and a small space opens up in-between each of them. As a woman, it's easy to get out of the basin. A thin road sits atop a levee beside the field and the people who pass through are lonely. The water droplets suspended above the road scatter their headlights and muffle their sound so that you can't see them until you're looking.
In the field, she pulls everything around her tight in her stomach and lungs. Her face looks like a wooden mask carved out by the moonlight. Her stomach contracts and the fog pours up from her lungs and out through her mouth, running like a river over the ground. A ring of flesh in her throat is shaken by the turbulence, and the vibration spreads throughout her body. A sound like a stomp is sharp and quick. When it moves through things, they are active in succession. When mom sings, she is shaken and everything moves with her.

All of my children, they've come out from me,
And I came from my mother.

We work and sleep, in the home that we keep,
We've found ourselves in each-other.

For many years, we've worked in the field,
on land made rich by the water.

A river that shakes, knows not what it takes,
a home, a son or a daughter.

It comes and it goes, and in us it flows,
holding the tides of our sorrow.

It comes and it goes, and none of us know,
when it takes back what we borrow.

She turns her head to look around without flitting her pupils. Everything's wet, and it all reflects her a million times. The light moving back and fourth draws lines between the land and her body. She strikes a wooden spoon against a black rock in her hand to keep the time. Kaun(k) -- Kaun(k) -- Kaun(k) -- KaunK. When she strikes the rock with the backside of the spoon it sounds high and sharp like a crack. When she turns the spoon over, it captures a pocket of air like a cupped hand clapping. In my sleep, this is the sound of a turtle's shell. In my dream, the people who live by the river are waiting for the water to come to their homes and fill them up. It comes in and swirls between the legs of the people and the furniture, and pushes them out of their places. The Wooden people float when the rivers rush in and they're carried wherever it goes. The Stone people stay unmoved by the force until the currents turn them to sand.

written in Fall 2012 when making work as Harold Fisk

Harold Norman Fisk - Missouri 1919

The river pulls the land with it like the lining of my intestines; dead flesh flushed out with my feces. The boundary between the land and the water is not like a line, but like the diffused edges of a cloud; there's no place where one surface meets the other. A gradient of silt and mud, rotting leaves and fish separating into smaller and smaller particles are trails of smoke rising upwards. They're streaming endlessly like the long dark hair of my mother bathing. Her hair has no buoyancy and no weight so that it moves only when the water moves. My mother is sitting in a wicker chair whose woven and dried plant fibers squeak in tension with each-other as she breaths. Her subservience to my father pulls the air around her body in through tightly flexed nostrils. Her chest presses into her spine and there's a silent wind. Empathy is to understand that what's good for you isn't always good for others. Discipline is deciding to act accordingly. My face looks just like hers, and my sister's too. Her life was split into three; three different instances of the same idea, all breathing in the same room. Mom's breath moved like this always -- the moist swampy air surrounding her, and filling her simultaneously. For 60 years it never stopped, and the river was always getting closer to the house. The boundary between the air and her body is not like a line, but like the ground in a dust storm, or the land around a river. The dirt goes into the river and the river seeps into the land. The plants gather around and sing in the rich silt from up north. As the water forces its way to the sea, it rips holes in the ground; irreverent to the buildings and peoples held up by it. The farmers knew this, as all of them had lost a home or a child or a season's crops to the floods. The water moves higher and lower every year, but it never comes in the same way.

written in Fall 2012 when making work as Harold Fisk

Artist Statement // 2012

"The post human subject is an amalgam, collection of heterogeneous components, a material-informational entity whose boundaries undergo continuous construction and reconstruction." -- Katherine Hayles

A revolution in the brain sciences -- behavioral psychology, cognitive neuroscience, evolutionary psychology, and systems theory is changing the way we understand the nature of the human self. The model of self established by these disciplines opposes American ideals of individualism, free will, and autonomy. From a post human vantage point, these traditional western views are flawed, and can be implicated in the ecological crisis we are faced with today. This crisis is manifest both inside, and outside our bodies.


invoking chaos // introducing noise


In my work I use readily available materials (cell phones, computer screens, music videos, scientific data) to explore our edges as bodies, and as conscious / unconscious beings. These materials, the objects that populate our existence, are simultaneously the most ubiquitous and the most invisible things in our lives. By editing and re-presenting images that pervade mass media and the devices that convey them, I attempt to illuminate or objectify the assumptions and ideologies embedded in them. When these cultural artifacts are put in relationship with scientific models that visualize human impact on environmental systems, conceptual boundaries between a person and their environment are agitated.

When physical transformation and thought are understood to be inseparable, the dualisms of mind and body - fantasy and reality - culture and biology are exploded.

Harold Fisk -- Statement

An organic form is not static but is continually undergoing change. Materials are constantly in flux. Because a river is simultaneously drained and replenished, it is never the same material but it's always the same spirit. As the water flows in, it's cradled into form and the particles are made to begin as echoes of their predecessors. Form is the result of a process."
Jack Willow

Memory is the structure of the past constraining the present; the remnants of actions and movements; the traces of being. Deer in the forest trod to the water and their activity is fixed in the compacted earth. As the path is traversed it becomes deeper, and the plants move away. The more pronounced the path becomes, the more it asks to be trodden. In this instance, a moment has become an echo in reverse. My work explores memory and understanding as physical phenomena. I work by spending time with and mirroring the world around me, by allowing my self to be absorbed into the environment and then pulling out : a cell splitting in two. The best reaction to reality I can imagine is to copy the world relentlessly watching closely as it mutates, and letting it wrap around to see itself.


:Memory is the interpretation of form, and understanding is the mirror that reflects it:

Harold Fisk was a scientist who, while working for the US Corps of Engineers in the 1940's, published a series of maps and writings recording his teams investigations of the Mississippi River. The publication was titled, "Geological Investigation of the Alluvial Valley of the Lower Mississippi River." For a period of time I took on his name in an attempt to explore a new mode of thinking and making art. Embodying new personlalities as a way to expand my practice was first introduced to me by Eve Andree Laramee

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Auto-Geography // 2013

Born in Cape Girardeau Missouri 1988, Ryan Hammond is a new media artist living and working in Baltimore MD. Often in the form of publications and video installations, his work examines the ways new technologies modify our experience of space and time in order to address a larger dialogue about human perception and consciousness. Materials that are ubiquitous in everyday life (pop music videos, cell phones, computer screens) become lenses used to examine interactions between culture and biology; technological progress and desire.

Heavily influenced by systems theory, neuroscience, evolutionary psychology, and cognitive science, Ryan is interested in the ways Art and Science explore the same questions, and how a stronger dialogue between the two could impact them. Along side his sculptural work he has worked as an editor and cameraman for multiple documentary films, a beekeeper and garden organizer for MICA's Buddha Garden, as well as a teacher and researcher for GGI (a nonprofit organization connecting scientists and artists to work on collaborative projects and workshops). He graduated from Maryland Institute College of Art in Spring 2012 with a major in interdisciplinary sculpture and a minor in sustainability and social practice.

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