Ruben Millares (USA)
October 26, 2012 § Leave a comment
The Number Field series challenges our understanding of numbers as well as the traditional formats in which they are encountered. By printing multiple passes of collaged numbers one on top of each other, figures that once had a very specific meaning and relevance are stripped of this value and re-imagined. The artist, who is also a CPA, spent hours hand plucking numbers from actual financial documents and gathering them into intricate patchwork collages. Each number is greater than 75,000, taken from personal financial statements, investment results, business proposals, projections, net worth, stock holdings, etc. The amounts, size of numbers, and multi-layered saturation cause the eye to constantly change focus in an attempt to understand, inducing an over-stimulating effect. What do these numbers mean? Is there a hidden formula?
The tedious process becomes a meditative practice removing all original significance from the numbers and allowing for their reinterpretation by the viewer. The intricate multicolor patchwork initially appears pleasant, but once approached closely, intensifies as the numbers begin to take meaning through the viewer’s relationship to them. Are they deaths? Births? Unaccounted for or evaporated disaster recovery funds? Gallons of oil consumed or spilled? Bailout funds? People? Numbers define everything around us, but in this case, the viewer’s relationship to these figures creates new meaning. The series serves as a mirror into our own lives, where numbers become a pixilation of everything that makes up the world around us – the NOW ever present, alive and in flux.