Through a combination of performance, video, installation, and sculpture, I play devil’s advocate, challenging social norms and tradition.
Using body and identity as an entry point, my work pokes and prods at our relationship with the media, politics, and social expectations. Our identity is shaped by what we do and do not connect with, whether by explicit choice or by instinct, but do norms and the intention of tradition add to or diminish the development of our most honest self? Traditions carry the mentality of “this is how we have always done it” without considering how the world has changed over time. Although formed with good intentions (to pass down beliefs, customs, and ways of thinking), at what point do traditions hinder social development rather than simply aiding in its preservation?
These questions manifest physically in my work as I repurpose cultural objects and adopt stylistic cues from trends in culture and life. The familiarity of the materials I use creates a point of entry for my viewers. Their internal feelings (including social connotations, personal memories, and intuitive tastes) form a preexisting relationship to the objects included in my work and likewise serve as important elements in how they relate to and experience my artwork. Following the Pop Artists’ use of cultural objects to question what fine art is or can be, I use glitter, home insulation, found objects, projections, and my body to question systems that have been set in place to define our identity.
Our world likes to turn issues into trends. Sexual harassment has become a hashtag (#NastyWoman). Economic positioning is manifested as glitter and gold spray paint and knock off brands. My work calls attention to the social tendency to sugarcoat or camouflage what is really going on and prompts us to acknowledge the allure of the trend. Trendiness is not inherently bad, but it must be approached skeptically. My work is a skeptic look at how our society is constructed and a line of approach is drawn for us to negotiate our place within it.