I start with something found or captured or stolen (styrofoam, a root, a piece of tarmac, a plastic balloon, insurance photos, a view). To work is to excavate. To lay down layers and take them up again. To recreate blanks. The ‘operation’ of perception becomes synthesis, allegory, myth, talisman, transformation.
A magpie, I am hopeful, not vicious. I remember the cat dragging the preserved and desiccated corpse of a magpie from the chimney. She had been agitated for some time, but we didn’t know why. (The magpie was almost as big as she was.)
I am haunted by the potential of materials to reveal shared hopes, dreams, and nightmares. Grouped together the things I make/find are a gesture outward. An invitation into a house I do not own and will never live in.
My current project Casser Maison (breaking the house) refers to a French-Canadian end of life ritual of clearing a house. At the end of life, home is interchangeable; possessions transferable. Could this shift experienced by many help us to imagine a more sustainable way of living on our planet? Experimenting with a bricolage of observational drawing and painting, collecting and combining, Casser Maison considers ideas of home and nostalgia as expressed through the rituals of breaking or leaving a house.
A previous project Gyre came about from observing a mystery: the increasing number of cellophane balloons appearing on the same wild, and inaccessible ocean beach. I collected hundreds over years and with sculpture and automatic drawing, used these objects to explore melancholy, the persistence of desire, the seduction of nostalgia. Our ‘collective forgetting’ it turns out is the answer to this mystery, the end of the feedback loop that brings us back around to what we think we need.