Life: Expressions of Living

Project Statement

For this blog entry I’ve decided to include the project statement I’ve written for the painting on the left and the 14 small cut paper works that accompany it.  All of the pieces that inspired this piece of writing can be found on the 2010 Portfolio page

Today is the day our bioluminescent probes drill through the ice and bedrock to the caves below. Our infrared imagery is showing the possibility for life! These submerged Lovelies are living without oxygen. These permeable darlings reproduce in ways we can scarcely grasp…but what matters is they’re truly living.

As we slithered and probed with the help of our light-snakes, we discovered, as so many colonists discover, that we were not the first to probe these depths.  A garden of broken glass shards came in and out of view as our we wavered between excitation and confusion…

For the past year, I have been saturating my ears with science fiction podcasts as I work in the studio.  In my free time, I scour science magazines and watch documentaries about life that exists and could exist in such remote locations as the waters on Saturn’s moon, Titan.  When preparing my body of work for Life: Expressions of Living, I knew I wanted to pull from this pool of research as I set out to prepare humanity for a paradigm shift in our understanding of what life is and where it could exist.

As I gathered the elements for my imaginary expedition, my ongoing interest in human discards crept into my cave.  I began to remind myself how often in history have we assumed that our expedition to a new world is the first of it’s kind, but only to find the ruins of a previous presence.  I began to pull in subject-matter from my own visual archive to litter the cave to remind the viewer that our refuse often wanders into the unknown before our exploration even begins.

The small cut paper works that surround the central canvas function as emotional snapshots taken by the bioluminescent probes.  As the probes explore the cave, they illuminate microscopic societies immersed in mating rituals.  I started each of these works with the goal of using simple shapes and patterns to represent my “Lovelies” interacting with each other and their environment.  The abstract language that I’m building in my cut paper work is often inspired by a small section in my acrylic paintings I feel inclined to explore further. Through my work, I seek to use color and pattern as a means to pose questions and tell stories.

 

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