Ordinary Objects Sliced and Reborn as Fragmented Sculptures

Deconstructed Nike Cortez by Fabian Oefner

Sculptor Fabian Oefner is a master of deconstruction. Piece by piece, he dismantles ordinary objects and transforms them into high art by highlighting their inner workings. His newest set of work, The Heisenberg Series, sees him dissecting six objects that all help record our memories. Shoes, a clock, a tape recorder, a camera, and a black box were all filled with resin, sliced into pieces, and then carefully assembled into sculpture. The results are artworks that are familiar from a distance but begin to dissolve as viewers approach them.

Oefner's inspiration came from Werner Heisenberg's famous Uncertainty Principle. In quantum mechanics, this means that when you measure one property, such as momentum or energy, it's increasingly difficult to take an accurate reading of a second property like position or time. “I applied this idea to these six sculptures,” Oefner tells My Modern Met. “When you look at them from a distance, you can easily identify the object. However, if you start to get closer to observe the inside, the shape of the object starts to get distorted and vanishes completely. As an observer, you are never able to look at the object as a whole and its inner workings simultaneously. The more accurately we see one view, the less clearly we see the other. Your interaction with the sculpture ultimately determines its appearance.”

Each sculpture invites the viewer in to study its details and provides newfound intimacy with these familiar objects. The creative process is a painstaking one, as Oefner must create his own roadmap on how to dismantle each one, occasionally breaking them along the way. In fact, he needed to use two Leica cameras, as the first one was destroyed by the resin. As for how they were selected for the project, Oefner carefully considered the items he used and each one relates to the same theme—memory.

“They all record something,” Oefner shares. “With the camera, the tape recorder, and the black box it's obvious—they either record an image or a voice, a piece of music, etc. The clock keeps track of time or you could also say that it records it. The one thing a little less obvious is the sneakers. But to me, sneakers are like recording machines that keep track of our motion. The shoes used are 1985 Nike Cortez. I often wonder about all the different places around the world they were walked to…So, in a way, the series is about fragmentation or distortion of memory.”

Fabian Oefner deconstructed six ordinary objects and transformed them into fragmented resin sculptures.

Deconstructed Camera by Fabian Oefner

Camera

Deconstructed Alarm Clock

Alarm Clock

Deconstructed Sculpture by Fabian Oefner

Tape Recorder

Deconstructed Black Box

Black Box

Deconstructed Nike Sneakers

Sneakers

The sculptor weaves together the individual pieces of the objects to distort the way we see them.

Deconstructed Black Box

Black Box

Deconstructed Nike Sneakers

Sneaker

Each object was selected for the way it relates to recording human memories.

Fabian Oefner - The Heisenberg Series

Alarm Clock

Deconstructed Sculpture by Fabian Oefner

Tape Recorder

Deconstructed Leica by Fabian Oefner

Camera

Deconstructed Black Box

Black Box

This includes a pair of sneakers, which Oefner calls “recording machines, that keep track of our motion.”

Sculpture Made From Nike Sneaker

Sneaker

Shoe Transformed Into a Sculpture

Sneaker

Deconstructed Nike Sneakers

Sneaker

Fabian Oefner: Website |  Instagram

My Modern Met granted permission to feature photos by Fabian Oefner.

Related Articles:

Classic Cars Perfectly Explode Into Thousands of Tiny Pieces

Real Vintage Lamborghini Worth $2M “Explodes” into Thousands of Pieces

Artist Rearranges Photos Into “Exploding” Collages That Look Like They’ve Been Shot

Vintage Cameras Cut Up and Turned into Dissected Sculptures Display the Intricate Beauty of Old Tech

Jessica Stewart

Jessica Stewart is a Contributing Writer and Digital Media Specialist for My Modern Met, as well as a curator and art historian. She earned her MA in Renaissance Studies from University College London and now lives in Rome, Italy. She cultivated expertise in street art which led to the purchase of her photographic archive by the Treccani Italian Encyclopedia in 2014. When she’s not spending time with her three dogs, she also manages the studio of a successful street artist. In 2013, she authored the book 'Street Art Stories Roma' and most recently contributed to 'Crossroads: A Glimpse Into the Life of Alice Pasquini'. You can follow her adventures online at @romephotoblog.
Become a
My Modern Met Member
As a member, you'll join us in our effort to support the arts.

Sponsored Content