The prints in this gallery are from the 2nd Law Portfolio.
The “2nd Law” refers to the second law of thermodynamics, also known as the “entropy law.” The relevance of the entropy law extends beyond the world of physics. As social critic Jeremy Rifkin wrote, “The Entropy Law states that matter and energy can only be changed in one direction, that is…from ordered to disordered. In essence, the law says that everything in the entire universe began with structure and value and is irrevocably moving in the direction of random chaos and waste. For our grandchildren’s generation the entropic world view will be like second nature…” Bear in mind that Rifkin’s prophetic words were written around 35 years ago, before the many “entropic” events - social, climatic, environmental, economic, terroristic, etc. - of the new millennium.
This ongoing series, begun around 1990, consists of small prints, most measuring around 3 ¼” square. The prints have incorporated a variety of techniques: etching, silk screen, collagraph, drypoint, monotype, ImagOn, and Solarplate. When the portfolio began, the prints were intended as nothing more than technical experiments, attempts at establishing a formal vocabulary that I could apply to my larger, “more important” printmaking efforts. Over time, however, the series began to take on a life – and title – of its own. Instead of serving as preparatory work for other prints, the “2nd Law Portfolio” began to parallel those other prints in intent and importance.
I have no idea how many hundreds of images I’ve produced as part of this series over the years; most have been periodically sold off. Still, the project endures, with a number of fresh prints added every year. Given the portfolio’s status as an ongoing project, I never write a date on individual new prints…As long as I’m alive and immersed in studio work, I don’t foresee an ending to the series.