For close to two decades, media immersion placed the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan squarely in our sights. With the troop draw down beginning in 2010, media attention turned to the returning veterans. News of the shameful bureaucratic difficulties they encountered became more frequent, as were stories about the lasting emotional, psychological and social impact of war.
I felt compelled to portray these young men and women as the diverse individuals they are, deserving of our respect and recognition for their personal sacrifice, irrespective of our political views on the conflict. As the project began to take form, I discovered that their tattoos provided insight into their journeys, their personal experiences and their beliefs and I chose to expose their stories by translating them into a visible medium that would far outlast the individuals themselves: porcelain.
Who would have thought that a seemingly innocent pair of underpants could snowball into an exciting artistic opportunity? Well, admittedly, I did make them out of porcelain and yes, I did go further with this work to make a statement about the frightening increase of legislation in the US dictating what a woman can and cannot decide about her own body. It infuriates me. The finished work (below) incorporates a rusted lock (found in Mexico) all too reminiscent of the days of chastity belts…
This is one of two works that were selected by a very prestigious panel of judges to be exhibited at the International Ceramic Biennale in Cluj, Romania:
Unfortunately I had to withdraw my second work selected, an installation entitled If the Shoe Fits…Buy It because of the punishing shipping costs 😦
Thanks to some frequent flyer points, I will be attending the Museum’s grand opening on October 9th, as well as being an invited speaker during the three-day symposium following the Biennale’s opening. This is a very exciting opportunity; I intend to present a lecture entitled ‘The Balance of Concept and Aesthetics in Narrative Ceramic Installation’.
Cluj being the capital of Transylvania (!) I am sure I will come back with some great pix to share.