"I was always torn by the dilemma of whether to abstract or not to abstract, and after about 10 or 12 years, I decided to venture off in a new direction."

So says Rogelio Maxwell, a man committed to artistic realism. The Brooklyn-bred artist has put out a broadside calling for bankers, stockbrokers, ad persons, journalists and other assorted inhabitants of this city's glass gullies and concrete canyons to participate in his "living sculpture."

The work, titled "What I Feel," will be presented in three parts, accompanied by a musical composition for electronic instruments. Those selected by the artist will arrive dressed as they wish to be viewed, and will stand in place while a tape -- recorded by the person -- describes how he or she wishes to be known. And because Maxwell has seen some of his living sculptures end on an anarchic note -- as spectators began asking questions and participants shot back with a melange of explanations and motivations -- he will set a few rules as to the length of time each tableau may be scrutinized.

"I think where realism is going, this is the next logical step," Maxwell predicts. His latest endeavor is a personal answer to the "perennial" argument, fostered by artists such as Dwayne Hanson and Richard Estes, over realism's natural limits.

People interested in helping Maxwell with "What I Feel" should call him at 234-0001, evenings.