Brooklyn-based artist Kyle James Dunn creates magnificent sculptures where he transforms solid metal into delicate, lacy structures. This piece, entitled The Sun Never Sets, is built from plasma-cut steel, paint, and steel hardware.
Dunn states that this particular project is based around the American idea of vacation and the island getaway. The artist says, “Its tropes–the desert isle, the Aloha shirt–exist in a fantasy realm outside of a specific time or place. They create a seductive language of artifice and leisure that is both costly and escapist to uphold.” He believes that cultural references like books, movies, and art have created an ideal, fantasy world that does not truly exist and, as Americans seek out these places for a vacation, they trample on real and existing cultures and economies.
The sculpture plays with these ideas of illusion. The brightly colored paints, reminiscent of the patterns of an Aloha shirt, gradate across the surface of an old-fashioned car. From a distance, the surface of the sculpture appears shiny and smooth, but upon closer inspection, viewers can see that the surface is actually quite damaged and sharp due to the rough process of plasma-cutting. These contradictions work together to represent Dunn's commentary on the American dream vacation.