Ingrid Goldbloom Blochs fascination with alternative art materials began as a little girl when shed follow her dad around hardware stores inspecting bins of nuts and bolts. Over the years, the Needham, Mass., self-taught artist and mother of two has found ways to combine hardware with traditional art materials such as beads and yarn for one-of-a-kind teapots, urns, and lingerie.
Bloch, 45, has fabricated bras and bustiers out of everything from welded metal to stainless steel mesh, detailed with rivets, grommets, and hooks.
When I tried on sexy push-up bras, I realized just how uncomfortable they were. I started thinking about the cost of beauty over comfort and became interested in using hard materials for something thats supposed to be soft and feminine, Bloch explains.
Her Trashy Lingerie ensemble bustier, garter, and underpants cleverly combines recycled soda cans and hardware materials. Why Coke and not Pepsi? I thought the red Coke cans looked hot for a lingerie series, Bloch replies.
On one of her weekly trips to the local hardware store, Bloch came across Gutter Guard, an aluminum mesh material designed to keep leaves and other debris from clogging rain gutters. Using the Gutter Guard as backing, Bloch wove ¼"-wide strips cut from the cans into the mesh, then used a drill press and rivets to hold everything together.
I love the challenge of construction, and putting both materials and objects in a new light. I do this by either changing the expected construction of the object or using materials for something other than their intended use, she says.
In this spirit, bustier straps are made from a strand of soda can pull tabs, panty edges are finished with dryer vent rings, and hose clamps are refashioned as garter straps.
The family tradition continues with Blochs two boys, ages 5 and 7, who follow the artist around the hardware store making their own mini-sculptures.
— Katie Kurtz
Blochs creations: flickr.com/photos/ingridgoldbloombloch
Photography by Dean Powell