Caroline Austin

Rock, Paper, Scissors 

Rock, Paper, Scissors is a work that takes its name from one of the oldest hand games in the world.  A simultaneous, zero-sum game, it has three possible outcomes: a draw, a win or a loss.  In game theory, a zero-sum game is a mathematical representation of a situation involving at least two sides. The result is an advantage for one side and an equivalent loss for the other. The game theory tree diagram pattern is etched into the work, representing the three outcomes of play.  The zero-sum game represented in this work is an attempt to undo the pervasive conceptions of temporality that take progress as inevitable and, ultimately, a zero-sum game between nature and humans.  The action of cutting attempts to orchestrate space and movement into this rule-bound game, asking viewers to attune to the intricacies of our entanglement with human, nonhuman and elemental forces. The cutting of the paper also deliberately deconstructs the physical and conceptual boundaries between sculpture and photography, suggesting new associations and narratives.