Artwork > Writing

The missing body of print — has it not always been the case? A material residue; a physical, yet vulnerable trace left behind — deposited in the wake of our own passing through the world? With the assumed authority of a fact, the act of imprinting speaks emphatically, ‘I am here’, in a manner that assures its immersion in a present reality and relationship to physical things, but also, almost immediately, speaks the uncertain and lingering ‘I no longer am’.

For the last decade my work has shown an exploration of material and perceptual threshold as related to the world of ordinary things (bowls, tape, rags, wire) and phenomena (weather, dust, gravity, light). Folding together elements of print, photography, and serial based structure, my work brings to bear the temporal and spatial dimension of the pictorial image and its contingent, often vulnerable, relationship to natural phenomena and lived experience. I am interested in a kind of “double-pull” at the heart of the image: pulled one way by poiesis, or “making”, generated through an attraction to and collaboration with the world of matter and aimed by human desire at carrying an image forward into the realm of the sensible; and, pulling the other way—as a nonhuman material phenomena—resisting language and revelation.

The world is a maker and collector of prints – the residual tracings of material encounter. My practice as an artist is motivated by a fundamental concern for being drawn toward what is – the desire for intimacy and encounter with the world, and the world’s capacity, despite language’s intending grasp, to remain something else and other.

Materiality cuts through language and human intention, facilitates its’ making and disrupts it as contingency and error. Like a fossil, formed under the pressure of time, or even the distressed, worn pages of a book, the printed trace is a shell, a lingering hollow shaped by the body’s passing (its mortality, transience, and physical displacement). In this regard, we might sense in these liminal traces of print a kind of memento mori — being drawn into an awareness of our own embodied uncertainty.

This heightened awareness, an attentiveness to what is and what is unbecoming in our worldly encounters points away from the purely utilitarian view of technology and language toward a critical vulnerability. Language is a shaping, a making, an act of resonance and reach, but also a tempering and quieting. Art seeks not a total dissolution of language, but it asks us to suspend language’s persistent regard for itself. We forget ourselves in art, if only for a moment, to instead regard the attraction, the pull of the other. I am interested in that hollow at the heart of the print which is forever seeking, gesturing outside of itself toward that which is other – its’ absent, yet erotic, body.

Artist Statement