Artist Edward Mayer lectures on influences

Mayer spoke about his artistic process and how it shapes his vision.  (Photo provided by
Mayer spoke about his artistic process and how it shapes his vision. (Photo provided by

On April 15, students and professors filled the campus center to listen to Edward Mayer speak about his art. Mayer is a visiting artist             to Oswego.

Mayer started talking about himself and his art, saying he likes making art that looks like you can buy from a store. Some of his works still exists, others in document form, or as he says in his memory also.

He had a PowerPoint of all of his work; starting off simple and working his way to more complex pieces of art.

“I wanted to think of a way to make art that could be arranged in different ways,” Mayer said.

The beginning of his slides had art that kind of all looked the same. They all had a style to them where he tried to add ‘T’s’ and plus signs. They were all made out of steel with painting over them. He made variations of work that could be formed and stand in different ways. For every piece of art he showed, there would be a couple slides after that showing different ways it could stand and be showed off in a different way.

“Art that stands in different ways show off different relationships,” he said.

He explained that he could change the whole exhibition from one day to the next by refiguring every piece.

At his art exhibitions, he has a real piece of artwork, then a model piece that is much smaller. This way, he explained, observers can make different variations of the model and then he can see what they did with it.

Mayer explained to us how he had pieces that he would brain storm, draw out, make a model and then enlarge it. For some specific pieces, he told the audience he designs on the spot. Mayer said he made formica circles in the water; we also saw a picture of it. Right before he showed us the picture, he said that everything is made to last forever, but only if people take care of it. Unfortunately, a storm came through and destroyed his formica circles. “I made a piece that I intended to last, but it didn’t make it,” he said.

He said that was a sign for him that he didn’t have to hold on to everything. “Drawing is sometimes like looking down and just seeing something you didn’t expect to see,” he said.

Mayer was very enthusiastic about his artwork and answered questions at the end of his talk.

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