Collection Artwork
A small wooden spool wrapped with colorful thread.
Dario Robleto (born San Antonio, Texas, 1972)
You Make My World a Better Place to Find
lint, thread, various debris and particles, the artist’s grandmother’s antique wooden spool
For the past two years I have been secretly collecting lint, thread, etc., from friends, acquaintances and strangers (for example a piece of lint on someone’s shoulder, a hair hanging on a forearm.) I have connected all this debris into one long thread which I then spooled. From this spool of debris I repaired a blanket, a tiny pair of mittens, sewn buttons back on, repaired tears in clothes and various other things.
object size: 1 1/4 x 1 x 1 in.
dimensions variable
Gift of Peter Norton
United States, North America

Object Label

If the “other side” of life is death (afterlife?), if the other side of physical human existence is burial, cremation, or another form of corporeal eradication … How do we create meaning from the things people leave behind?

Sally Mann’s photograph of the studio of her lifelong friend and fellow artist Cy Twombly, taken around the time of his death in 2011, asks: Does the artist’s imprint remain in his studio, or do we imprint ourselves, our sentiments, our longings onto the deceased’s belongings? What can the materials of lived existence tell us when the owners are no longer here to reveal their own stories?

Where Mann contemplates a single person, Dario Robleto offers a meditation on many. The work is an unapologetically romantic manifestation of our collective lives and of the unknown connections between strangers. What magic is contained in the discarded, valueless bits of our everyday lives? What can we use to sew ourselves together?

From the exhibition: Other Side:
Art, Object, Self (August 12, 2017 – January 3, 2018)

Ongoing Research

Research on our collection is ongoing. If you have resources you’d like to share, please contact Associate Curator Rebecca McNamara.
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