Saturday, May 8, 2010
Below is my artist statement for the works I've been creating this year. Note- if you came to the show, this is a different artist statement than the one you saw there. As of right now, I like the following one better.
Ever since I was a small child, I have had intense physiological and emotional reactions in crowded public places. Until I spent a semester in Beijing, China in the Spring of 2009, I thought I had successfully dealt with these feelings. I arrived during the Chinese New Year and my first tourist excursion was to a Temple Festival. I have never in my life been someplace so densely packed with human bodies, bodies like a river or a stampede. I literally had to clutch my friends or risk being torn apart from them by the crowd. I was incredibly overwhelmed and needed to leave. The emotion I felt during that experience was the most intense of my entire five months in China.
Since returning to the United States, I have worked to visually express that emotion and the related thoughts it conjures up. I am investigating issues of human density, populations, and personal identity within a crowd. While drawing and sculpting literally thousands of people, it is impossible to not ponder issues of human consumption: the physical space we take up, the air we breathe, and the waste we leave behind.
Each of the pins were actually part of a 'pin ticket' (a tiny 11/2" by 2" card) that I had done drawings on and then pushed through to the outside of the box.
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
These pictures are from the two weeks prior to my show and show the installation process of the Tags piece. I first built a frame out of chicken wire and painstakingly tied 1,200 tags onto it. The hallway that you see was about 5 feet wide and 8 feet deep. I painted many of the tags (which are roughly the size of an index card) with portraits of people- some of them I painted while looking at pictures or people walking by my studio window, and others were just people I imagined.
More pictures of the final piece to come soon!