Rather than creating fictional worlds, my work calls attention to
real spaces – their history, uses, quirks and particularities. On
the one hand, I engage with a place in a spirit of play, drawing forth
its multiple identities and possibilities. On the other hand, I address
a site from a position of social responsibility, with a sense of the role
that art can play in laying bare problematic realities. More specifically,
my work addresses how negotiations of different sites of power form the
identity of spaces, and how that affects both the aesthetics of the space
and its function. I subsume both of these approaches within the idea of
"paying attention"– a state akin both to critical awareness
and to a more open-ended, meditative state of attention to and curiosity
about the present moment. By setting up situations that invite this kind
of attention, I aim to create a kind of demonstration project for paying
attention. “Start with this,” the work might say. "Now
imagine what it might be to look this way at everything."
By invoking these two forms of attention, the work aims to overcome an uncritical nostalgia about place. Critical thinking from philosophers, geographers, and architectural theorists have converged to suggest that places are not pre-existing entities with inherent or natural qualities, but are constantly being created anew by personal experience, economic forces, and social context. I am interested in mining these multiple realities of place and constructing layered responses that offer new views that question and celebrate them.