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July/August 2010 Centerfold

Tonare by John Rais | Artscope Magazine
art: Tonare
artist: John Rais
medium: forged and fabricated steel, patina, paint

My work is about narrating transition. There is an inserted duality that plays somewhere between sensuality and pragmatism. Each piece evokes a curious tactile quality that, by equal measure, amplifies and subverts function. The result is a cross-breed where no dominant trait is recognized with the goal of experiencing something new. Steel has a unique relationship with recycling, where it is found in scrap heaps like factory fossils. My work originates from the re-emitted and reheated raw material, and is forged and fabricated to appear once manufactured, discarded, and now re-appropriated to a new life. Parts are often designed separately and assembled intuitively, while re-sketching with chalk on the studio floor. I feel not so much a designer or a craftsman, but rather a mediator between idea and technique. These mongrels of art are a piecing together of memory piles and thought fragments. As a memory fades, it rewrites itselfwith segments of the original fused back together. In a sense, I make the objects that I wish I could find, but the love of making prevents me from ever finding exactly what I am looking for or even knowing what it is.

More of Rais’s work may be seen at