"How bring you then the time through" aka: Gas Can Piece.
gas cans, earth, moss, cement casting tray, 29 x 60 x 24 inches, appx. 150 lbs. 
1990 -- Tracy Ann Essoglou

"How bring you then..." is a literal English translation of "what's up?" in Dutch. The phrasing makes explicit an inquiry into the physicality of time's passing, our (possible) role in its passage, and our inter-human dependency – 'I' ask 'you' that 'you' may tell 'me'. These cans came from the dump at the center of Vinalhaven, an island off the coast of Maine. I was permitted to enter the site during off-hours because I was “… the only off-islander that takes garbage away." This web of status and signification haunts and often undermines efforts at land and resource preservation.

Beneath the cans lies a bed of moss (or grass), which requires intermittent watering. The scent of gasoline interrupts the scent of wetness. Both cans and moss rest on approximately 120 lbs. of earth, which has been poured into a cement-casting tray found on a back street in Brooklyn. I needed something to rest the cans on, the tray appeared; its proportions perfect. As a vessel, its 'container-ness' established the piece. It became a territory– albeit a limited one. Even as refuse, the cans are made entitled to a place of their own where use-value is not their only reason-for-being. The small white wooden staves mark the limits of the gas cans’ environ but are unable to contain the drifting cross scents of the damp growth and the remaining petroleum.


EXHIBITION NOTES for "How bring you then the time through...", aka Gas Can Piece, 1990.

▪ Exhibited: February – March 1991:
“Shenge Ka Pharoah & Tracy Ann Essoglou”, Vrej Baghoomian Gallery, NYC.

▪ Exhibited: May 1991:
“Lost & Found”, Sculpture Center, NYC.
Curated by Judd Tully
Citation: “Lost & Found,” Exhibit Booklet, Introduction by Judd Tully, Sculpture Center, NYC.
Photo of installation: “How bring you then the time through.”

▪ Exhibited: August – September 1994:
“Ruination”, Wake Forest University, Fine Arts Gallery, Winston-Salem, NC.
Curated by Leah Durner
Citation: "9 Artists Examine Land Use & Abuse in Wake Forest University Art Exhibit." in the column EYE ON ART, Sunday, September 18, 1994, by Tom Patterson, Winston Salem Journal, Winston Salem, N.C.: C-6.
Photo of installation: “How bring you then the time through.”