Using both natural and industrial materials, Mark Baugh-Sasaki creates fantastical sculptures which examine the relationship between humans and the environment. In an effort to make viewers more aware of their relationship to the natural world, his sculptures highlight the impact of the industrial and man-made domain on the environment, and vice versa. His sculptures exist as inhabitants and products of the meeting of the two forces and their impact upon one another.
Baugh-Sasaki’s sculptures are abstract and made primarily of wood and metal. They are formed into both geometric and organic shapes. Within Baugh-Sasaki’s work, a hint of struggle can be felt as the materials interact within space. Despite this conflict, the works achieve a harmonious state as materials from the natural world, fallen branches, rocks, and materials from the industrialized world, such as metal, exist within an ongoing interaction.
Baugh-Sasaki leaves much up to the viewer. The more powerful of the two forces, having a greater influence on the other, is not made explicitly clear within the sculptures. The natural and manmade materials in the work echo one another in shape and movement as they interact. While the sculptures illustrate the correspondence of both types of materials, they inspire the viewer to consider the effect of the natural environment upon what is man-made, and the influence of the made environment on nature.
Baugh-Sasaki, a San Francisco native, earned a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, studying Sculpture and Photography. Baugh-Sasaki has exhibited work throughout the U.S. and abroad, including the Islip Art Museum, New York; Geumgang International Art Center, Chungcheongnam-do, Korea; Headlands Center for the Arts, Sausalito; and Intersection for the Arts, San Francisco. He was recently awarded an Honorary James Irvine Foundation Fellowship for his work at the Djerassi Resident Artist Program in Woodside, CA. His public art sculpture Adaptations was commissioned and installed at Patricia’s Green in Hayes Valley, San Francisco, from July 2009 through January 2010. His most recent solo exhibition, The Civilized Wild, was presented by Krowswork in Oakland. Baugh-Sasaki’s work was also included in a group show at A Simple Collective in San Francisco from March 16 through May 18, 2013. He lives and works in San Francisco, California.
— Article by Alicia Cox, 2013