2016 - Ongoing
Brooklyn, New York, United States
Rose with Nails for Petals begins with photographs of women (vernacular nudes, portraits, catalog images, photographs from self defense and dance kinesiology books, images from the New York Public Library picture collection and digital archive, and from the Library of Congress archive) and textures (curtains, rugs, beds, often digitally manipulated). I place these in chaotic juxtapositions, with the figures in surreal, reimagined contexts. A dance of flatness and depth flows through this work, as the dimensionality expands and finally contracts back into the tight picture plane.
I am continually printing, rephotographing, and modifying. I lay images together on the studio floor or on large magnetic walls. Holes cut into images allow some pictures to become apertures and others to recede. I use gridded strobes to create dense shadows, and color gels and handmade cuculoris shapes to create areas of color and shadow. These elements give the photographs a deceptive depth – they are flat and yet pieces appear to rise from the photograph's substrate. Throughout the process I photograph and print, manipulate, re-photograph and re-print, with prints become part of the assemblage, sometimes in several iterations.
My work resists the inherent truthfulness and grounded representationality of photography while remaining rooted in the lens, the camera, and the photographic process, as well as the medium’s history and varied modes. Additionally, there are crucial connections between my work and poetry, most recently, of H.D., Robert Duncan, and Emily Dickinson. I often think about the “textual” aspects of images and the way images, like language, create veins of communication and conversation.
This work is not meant to be easy, either conceptually or aesthetically. It communicates its subjects and its subjectivity indirectly, without an obvious point of view. I resist my own strong opinions and the pointedness of my world critique to allow the work to exist in a more ambiguous, un-didactic space. It is my hope that, like that of the poets and artists with whom my practice converses, my work will transcend the immediate and the fleeting and speak to essential themes of memory, death, collapse, rebirth, fear, and the erotic, as well as the long history of feminist art and cultural critique, as it ultimately presents itself to the world, on its own, without me.
Final photographs are shot on 4x5 negative or digital. The prints vary in size and in medium, including large pigmented inkjet prints on Habotai silk and dye-sublimation prints on aluminum, as well as a series of handmade and digital offset artist books.