Tara Donovan is a artist that I would put in the same category as Tom Friedman. She uses everyday manufactured materials to create large scale sculptures. Though, those last few words are what I think differentiates her from Friedman... most of Donovan's work is large scale. Her sculptures often have a biometric quality, but also mimic vast landscapes. Donovan says of her work, "It is not like I'm trying to simulate nature. It's more of a mimicking of the way of nature, the way things actually grow."
Another quality worth mentioning is that she chooses the material before she decides what can be done with it. This is exactly what we were told to do in class for our "Transformation" project. This is something that I really struggle with. I'm much more inclined to conceive the project in my head and then figure out what materials I need to make it happen. I guess that means I need to spend more time doing material studies and really understanding the medium before conceptualizing what I'm applying it to.
At any rate, here are a few of the most interesting Donovan pieces I was able to find online.
This should give you a sense of scale of Donovan's projects. This piece is on display at the Museum of Contemporary Art in San Diego and is made entirely from styrofoam cups and hot glue. Crazy. You can also see the biometric/organic influence I was talking about earlier here in this piece. Reminds me of sea coral, or something of a similar fashion.
Here's an example of a more landscape-esque piece. This one is also made of cups, but these are of the plastic variety.
Think stalactites and stalagmites. Soooo many buttons. I thought I used a lot of cotton swabs on my project... this makes me hide my head in shame.