I’ve always been attracted to rituals: acts of complete devoted attention—deeming something special, granting acknowledgement, setting intentions, and invoking change through small manifestations. My multimedia installations incorporate sound, sculpture, performance, interaction and language; I magnify the ordinary, memorialize the mundane, and often use performance, involving repetition of body movements or gestures. Whether it’s setting the dinner table, sweeping the porch, or writing each evening, such commonplace rituals create an open invitation for ourselves and others to enter.
My work embodies sensitivity to the physical presence of surfaces, objects, space, sound and movement. Like rituals, the elements within the space radiate care, significance and purpose—each piece of handcrafted furniture elevates objects such as slips of paper, written text, keepsake boxes, and vessels. Tabletops and shelves are reminiscent of domestic spaces, but are also distilled, specific and altar-like. Their function is for specific gestures and happenings, such as collecting, arranging, clearing, and offering. For example, in the installation, “Unmaking Sense,” slender pine tables at face-height invite the viewer to acknowledge the offering of words, to touch them, and to their liking, choose which ones get placed upon a shelf, which is more than a display, it’s a precise niche; the shelves are built to hold these specific slips of paper—and nothing else. Throughout the performance this shelf is cleared, the words are recited following a musical score, and the shelves await the repeated actions: offering, arrangement, and clearing.
I translate these experiences and gestures by composing and invoking a space that resists the temptation to passively let simple moments go unnoticed. By dissecting, rearranging, and repeating these moments, I’m excavating meaning and purpose; in works that involve interaction, the viewer is unearthing this too.
Language and writing are very important to me and encompass a large portion of my recent work; writing allows me to carve out a space for myself—words begin to act as containers or reliquaries for reflection not only for myself, but for the viewer too. The writing ranges in form from the written word, to recorded audio sound, and live recitation. As these writings are used in installations, the language is rearranged, spliced, and fragmented in order to create more abstract thoughts. By doing this, that “container” of words invites the viewer to enter; they are able to shift inward.