early model cede
This is the first, rough model I constructed for this project; I am in the process of constructing the final model now. I often will construct prototypes or concept models, which can be pretty crude - this is by far the most accurate I've done. The accuracy has been useful, especially for such a large-scale piece; building the model breaks down the process of construction and helps to answer a lot of process/design questions that come up. Being able to take measurements off the model is great, too.
Models also do a terrific job of helping to explain the concept/design/physicality to people. This particular model (or its images) has been used to describe the project to the other IN:SITE artists and coordinators, county officials, Milwaukee city officials, state representatives, business owners and other interested parties. At times, describing the project verbally or in writing can make the project seem huge, impossible, confusing, or maybe even threatening. Yet the model, with its scale and physicality, transcribes much of that information, refocusing the conversation to from the 'hows' to the 'whys', in a sense, serving as a conceptual ambassador for the project.
In spite of all this accuracy, I will not know exactly how the light will respond to the perforations in the billboards until the piece is installed. This is what makes installation work exciting to me - I can only speculate on exactly how it will appear until it is constructed, then I get a chance to rediscover my work. I love the surprises.