Daniel Mack



Imagination Matters

January 20, 2007 – A four-week encounter in making

Artist/author Daniel Mack works with a group of 15 other Makers for a 4-week period to create a body of sculptural work from similar shared collections of materials and joineries.. Mack assembles the collections and sends them to each of the group and lightly directs the making. This is an exercise in active imagination through the process of making objects. No special experience is needed. Everybody is already a Maker.

Group is limited to 15 people $225 + $35 materials Characteristics needed for this course event:

Before/As the Course Starts:

  1. Makers explore the Wayward Artist pages of Daniel Mack's website: www.danielmack.com/wayward/index.html
  2. Makers explore www.poemhunter.com and www.aras.org
  3. Makers create a Profile of themselves, set-up a Journal Page.
  4. Each maker identifies an area of attention where s/he will be the course keeper of information. Such knowledge/experience areas may include: animals, woods, bugs, dreams, mythologies, alchemy, flowers. This is an area where you are already knowledgeable or keenly interested. Several people may choose the same area.

Week One

  1. Everyone uploads their Maker Profile onto Moodle.
  2. Everybody collects about 30-40 pieces of multiple local common found natural materials which might include: 30-40 nuts, 30-40 shells, 30-40 leaves, pods, sticks, soil, sand, bones, feathers. Themes: containers, aromatics, colors, textures, exotics, shapes, Elements (4" max in any one direction. think small) They fill a USPS Priority Mail carton ($8.10 Flat Rate Box) with this collection and send it to Daniel Mack, The Bricoleur. (To arrive by no later than Thursday).
  3. They upload a story of its selection and collection onto Moodle.
  4. The Bricoleur assembles 15 similar collections of materials from all this. Various methods of joinery (wire, string, glue, etc) are included in the package. He creates a series of exercises or moves with these particular materials.( themes, sizes, etc) He includes these in the package The Bricoleur gets this into Priority Mail by Satyrday Everybody Waits. Ho Hum

Week Two

  1. Everybody waits for the Mail. hey! It arrives, on-time, a day late. Boy, am I mad!
  2. Everybody starts to work with the similar collections of shared materials. They work both inside and outside the guidelines/themes, edges given by The Bricoleur (What does he know!)
  3. Photos and comments, journal entries are exchanged via Moodle By Friday, everybody has put up at least three images for others to see and written about the experience and the progressions-regressions of the week. The Bricoleur moderates and provokes the exchanges.

Week Three

  1. The Bricoleur issues a new set of directives. All groan in delight or agony. More whooshing of emails and photos. A small splinter of the group wants to kill The Bricoleur. They are restrained by the other splinter group who thinks he is channeling Chi. More work, more exchange. Makers have made at least 8-10 objects by this time. Pictures of all work are posted and the journaling continues. with emphasis on responding to the work (in objects and words) of Others. (The move from the I to the You.and the Us)
  2. On Wednesday, The Bricoleur issues the Secret Makers List. He tells each of the Makers to make something for a specified Other in the group (Bricoleur choses) and Priority Mail to it to them by Saturday.
  3. On Satyrday everybody gets Gifts into Priority Mail.

Week Four

  1. Waiting, waiting. Moodle discussions continue. All are encouraged to ponder their own work and the works of others. The visual library at ARAS might be helpful.
  2. Bricoleur starts summarizing the weeks' works.


One purpose of this Gathering of Makers (Remember, Everybody's a Maker. automatically issued at birth) is for all of us to move vertically from where we are. Many of us see value in not just broadening, but deepening and soaring in our handling of materials.

Vertical movements are rhythmic, surprising, alarming and invigorating. Moving vertically usually means bumping into things, encountering resistances. The spiral is the guiding geometry. It is an inviting circular movement which stays connected and returns towards itself while always moving vertically, sometimes in both directions at once. The connected part is important. This is not done in brutal lurches. It is done by honoring where we are, and discovering the direction of our spiral path. The spiral, unlike the circle, quadrangle or triangle, never closes in on itself. It doesn't end. In that way it is like the Line, but it reflects a complexity of movement.