In 1967, Richard Serra, a prolific large-scale steel sculptor, began writing a list of verbs that would inspire his work in any medium. The handwritten list is now part of the Museum of Modern Art’s collection. On their website, they describe the piece:
In pencil on two sheets of paper, the artist lists the infinitives of 84 verbs—to roll, to crease, to fold, to store, etc.—and 24 possible contexts—of gravity, of entropy, of nature, etc.—in four columns of script. Serra described the list as a series of “actions to relate to oneself, material, place, and process,” and employed it as a kind of guide for his subsequent practice in multiple mediums.
Concepts and Skills: Drawing, modelmaking, concept development
Materials: Modeling materials (cardboard, chipboard, glue, tape), popsicle sticks, toothpicks, string, pens, paper
Time: Minimum of one class period, can be expanded up to 6-8 hours
Assignment: Choose a verb from the list. In drawn, modeled, and kinesthetic (body movement) form, represent that verb as a design concept. You must produce the following: