I wrote the following project statement to accompany four of my works that I’m submitting to a show titled “Centering the Margins.” I don’t know if the work will be accepted, but I’m sure excited about the themes I’ve touched upon here. Hopefully, this line of inquiry will develop more throughout my 2012 work!
This group of cut paper paintings is inspired by a short-story titled “Cruciger” by Erin Cashier. In this story, a massive and autonomous ship named Duxa visits a liquid planet inhabited by beings that communicate with glyphs on the surface of their skeleton-free bodies. Duxa arrives programmed with the task of refashioning this liquid world to ready it for human life. Duxa explores the native beings by treating them as play things as she experiments with them until they expire. However, after learning the creature’s glyph language, she communicates with them and becomes aware how complex they are and that her experiments are causing them great pain. Duxa experienced a shift in focus from seeing the liquid planet as a zone in need of refashioning, to a realm teeming with intelligent and important beings.
My works are color and surface abstractions that contemplate how we use machines to intervene, irritate and injure in order to learn about life we don’t understand. I’m troubled by humanity’s assumption that life must not be intelligent if we can’t communicate with it. In these works, I’m bringing focus to invisible subject matter in an iconic way. Inspired by the microscopic world that appears to be free from the horizon and forces of gravity, these images represent a tranquility that is being interrupted by human instruments. With this series, I present fragile forms displaying pride and bucking back against the poking and prodding of the experimenter.