Falsework is a temporary scaffold-like architectural support which is used to hold elements in place during construction and until they become self supporting.
Paul Cullen’s Falsework sculptures are makeshift constructions in which items of furniture are inverted and supported off the floor and against the ceiling. These sculptures could be said to model the unlikely situation in which gravity is suspended and objects are able to float free from their usual restraints. Or they could be regarded as modelling a situation in which the inverse of the everyday, in which objects sit upon the floor, is presented. The do-it-yourself aesthetic of these sculptures has a basis in the drawings of Heath Robinson and Rube Goldberg. Both men drew complex, makeshift and illogical devices designed to perform simple tasks by indirect means and to represent the application of irrational principles to the pursuit of rational outcomes.
The Falsework sculptures are improvised constructions of relationships between ordinary objects reliant, like the whimsies of Goldberg and Robinson, on impractical and makeshift means. Although they are model-like, the Falsework sculptures only imitate the act of representation up to a certain point; they serve no real purpose and instead refer insistently to the processes of their own making and materiality.