Fair questions, both. As for the latter, it’s ‘Ah-sem-BLAZH,’ as in rhymes with … well, nothing. It’s a French word and in the art world, it really has to do with sculpture made from found objects or unusual material. Or, to think it another way, assemblage is a three-dimensional collage.
Of course, the concept of both terms will become clearer in focus for those who check out the new show “Assemblage + Collage + Construction,” taking place at the Museum of Art and History (MAH) in Santa Cruz and more than a dozen of other sites across the county as well.
It’s an amazing collection of artistic imaginations working in the detritus of popular American society, and really has to be seen to believed. A motorcycle made from vacuum cleaner parts? The “Last Supper” made from billiard balls and other throwaway items? It’s all here.
You can read my story on the exhibit, and experience yourself in venues around the county. It may be the most ambitious single art show in Santa Cruz County history, and events that spin off the main show will continue to open across the county. Go see it, then make something yourself.