Existence is no more than the precarious attainment of relevance in an intensely mobile flux of past, present, and future.
- Susan Sontag
My work is interdisciplinary, utilizing drawing, collage, sculpture, digital media, video and installation, combined with my ongoing research in politics, ecology, media, psychology, gender studies and semiotics. My personal history and influences compel me to be most concerned with violence, war, environmental disaster and inequality. My work is informed by the autobiographical with a strong desire to communicate about social, political and environmental issues that are pervasive but somehow made invisible in everyday life.
Reflected in both the content and the process of making my work, is the inherent impossibility of articulating experience, the collapse of certainty and the illusion of familiarity. I investigate a flux of meaning, and materiality. Objects, images and language in my work are ordered by shifting differences and are experienced as ephemeral or transitory. Ordinary places become strange or threatening, inanimate objects are animated, and what is repressed in one instant may become evident in the next.
My work has been described as hypnogogic or related to “the uncanny”, and is sometimes unsettling as it confronts the viewer with conflicting thoughts and feelings revealed in banal objects and familiar materials and places. My images and installations are both dream-like and nightmare-ish and it is my full intent to lure and repulse audiences at the same time. I desire for the viewer to experience a collapse of boundaries in material and/or language and to perhaps be awakened, even if momentarily, from social and political apathy.
Always fascinating to me was that prior to the introduction of the gothic novel, It was mostly female characters and non-heroic male characters who dream in eighteenth-century English fiction. It was an accepted notion that women at this time were viewed as inward thinkers, less capable of taking action and control over their environment and therefore their lives were simulations of a dream. This idea of the human condition and particularly female experience articulated as a horrific dream, is a theme often utilized in my work, but the passive nature of a dream is also subverted by the physical, and laborious process of actively un-making and re-making the work.
My drawings and installations play between poetic and intentionally literal gestures, and have often involved the active transformation or destruction of an object or image in order create something new, and more compelling, from the debris. The nature of my labor-intensive installation work, in particular, requires that I remake drawings of string each time I install the work. It is it is the ephemeral quality of these works that most intrigues me. I can change the images, re-define the narrative, and re-adapt the work to each new exhibition space, mirroring my desire for the dynamic 'act' rather than static object. Particularly in my earlier video work, and now in my current installation work, I am more interested in my thoughts in motion than in any single thought itself and I believe there is an inherent “violence” involved in limiting possibilities of a work for the sake of preservation.