ASCENCION OF THE BRAND
T-shirts collected and preserved between the years 2001-2011 in various regions of America showcase a trend that represents the ultimate deification of either a well-known detergent or coffee company, or else hints at how thin the line has become between commodity and religion.
ANIMAL SNACK KINGDOM
By way of taxonomically surveying the existing variation of phyla and species in the animal snack kingdom, this work takes the role of the museum into the realm of chewy nature and its "natural flavors," "strong, satisfying sours," and yellow #5, with the idea of pop culture as a catalyst to an evolution of species. This series continues to explore curiosity and a scientific wonder, though devoid of really any nature or natural substance, and with determination of cataloguing new discovery and nomenclature in this unknown world of glucosic, preserved natural forms that have befuddled scientists for generations.
PRODUCT DISSECTIONS, PART I
This project is an ongoing exploration of the roles of art, science, nature, the consumer, the institution, product, fabrication, reality, taxonomy, and our relationships with seemingly insignificant objects and materials that affect us daily. It approaches issues of anatomy and the figure, psychology, the nature of science, and archaeology, while offering a revealed view within the plastic skins of what we consume, as the delicate tension between death, health, and hygiene collide with the extremities of marketing, with bold, impractical, purposeless colors sometimes reminiscent of expressionist painting. I am interested in the notions of foundation, institution, and the nature of art as commercial product. I am continually inspired by the function and treatment of both nature and the unnatural in our environment, and I continue to explore our understanding of their roles, and the inherent beauty, humor, and horror that lies within them.
I continue to explore the museology of our lives, and how we immortalize, categorize, and organize our visual artifacts, physical memories and histories. I am particularly fascinated by the historical museum and diorama, whose paused, poetic moments resemble those of photographs, only premeditated and cautiously assembled, yet blatantly artificial and static. One might argue that we have a part in creating our own dioramas throughout our lives, assembling pleasing objects in spaces to teach and remind us of history, family, landscape. Our real landscape is changing, upgrading to granite counters, and the line between diorama and an overlook at a national park is becoming increasingly blurred. I am interested in fakery and artificiality and how human society reacts to, confronts, and controls its relationship with history, natural surroundings, and human society itself...then often presenting it to us lit by tungsten lights. Meanwhile I continue to probe the relationship between landscape and the wooded wallpaper in the diner. To paraphrase Mark Dion, this work is not about nature, but rather about ideas about nature, and humanity.
GOD FOR DUMMIES
These images represent a longtime facscination with evangelical music, and this series focuses on the small but boisterous vein of evangelical ventriloquists. The layers upon layers of function within phonography and ethnography and performance and fundamental religion vibrate the soul of this audiophile. Most interesting to me are the levels of channeling, a term used both in audio and religion, as God flows through the chosen human vessel, through the puppet or dummy, and through the phonograph, culminating often in a recorded religious artifact. Also important is the function of the puppet as a channel from the heavens to children. Some subjects have stardom in their histories and even involvements with Jim Henson, some are active still today, and some are focused on other arts. Some have taken even more extreme paths with belief. But all are recording legends in their field, and all have an interesting residence in obscurity. This is an ethnomusicological pursuit in its essence, and pays tribute to obscure musicians who play an important role in our culture…and what makes it interesting.