CORA MEYER, TYNA ONTKO, SONIA RUSCOE, EMMY THELANDER, ALLISON WALSH
A N G E L S
A spirit without a body is taking the shape of a body for fun. A baby doesn’t actually belong to anyone.
I call them shadow drawings but I put paint on the spots of light.
If Jesus was here he’d say if those are the wings, where are the eyes?
My ideas are arriving here in angels and babies and sun patterns. I am interested in the human spirit and in how and why people interact with one another. After much reading and thinking about misogyny and how it relates to trans liberation and how these frameworks interact with an expected binary, I came to this time in Casa Lü to paint. I wanted to make a story about the way spirits connect in friendship or love or family or anger or hate, just about the collisions themselves somehow without centuries weight of gender roles to trap the characters.
We can take away the spirit and look just at the body as it exists in states where gender is classically avoided. Angels are sexless yet powerful beings who long ago experienced human life before ascending to a higher plane above humanity (dead). Babies are often blank canvases on which gender is projected without any performance at all. But what's the point of examining the interaction between newborns and dead people? The good stuff happens in between.
So I took away the body and decided to try thinking about myself interacting with spirit. I laid out paper on the ground under a flower bush and followed the sun as it changed, painting the moving spots. This exercise brought me closer with the other invisibles that move through us, air, heat, shadow and time.
In the end I made figures in paint and clay. The painted angel in Olympia’s pose, the ceramic reclining devil and the kneeling person with hands that are way too big for its body all bring details into a figure which allow them to have a fully rounded character.
And so the babies and angels are a joke, the shadows are an exercise and the figures are the beginning of a story.
A minimal upbringing set the stage for how I approach mediums and materials in my creative practice today, where I am often using that which can be found from my immediate surroundings to make meaning.
Searching can only be done through direct experience
Today we are having conversations across place
“the ultimate hidden truth of the world is that it is something we make and could just as easily make differently” – David Graeber
Place is an open ended term
The yellow cedar carvings at the center of the installations rely on a dedication to craft and labor, riffing on the folk tradition of chainsaw carving popular throughout the rural Pacific Northwest. The carvings are situated within a tiny cosmos of collected objects and materials, calling to attention the theme of Jane Bennett’s book, Vibrant Matter: “matter itself is lively.”
To entangle means “to involve in intricate paths or among obstacles” – Being entangled might offer a non-linear way towards creation “to twist, interlace, or mix up in such a manner that a separation cannot easily be made”
What brings me most joy in my creative practice is exploring the way animate and inanimate beings can touch and affect one another when they are freed from the performance of certainty.
In your opinion, what is a Maker
Form many pieces
I see something you do not see
So much and yet so quiet
A room full of flowers is full
Do I still have room ?
Running does not always help
And does fruit ripen while gathering ?
I am also just a flower
That is my heroic power though I am simple and observe
A poem inspired by the encounter with the class Preprimaria A of the school Colegio Suizo de México A.C.
(who explained to me things about Mexico) many thanks Marina Waibel
Impression, imagination, knowledge and feelings.
All very different but all have the component of being truly experienced.
A work that tells of a fragmentary collecting, which leads to something new and may remain in motion.
I need to grow up
Are they with me?
Did we fail?
Did I fail them?
Did they fail me?
Can I leave?
I don’t want to leave.
I want to stay!
¿Por qué no los dos?
An immensely complex frame with infinite sides and rotations, it defines what we see and understand. Maybe life without a frame is death.
My apartment right now? It’s alright. This year I made my own furniture by designing it on the computer and cutting pieces out of plywood with a CNC machine. I’m not sure how long I will fit (I meant to type “live”, but “fit” feels like the better word) in this apartment.
Last year when I saw the Sophie Taueber-Arp show at MoMA I was most excited about the homes she designed. I visited Casa Gilardi. It is so painterly. I thought: ooooohhh I get why some people want to be architects. I thought about how me and my friend Dani—both painters who spend a lot of time designing furniture and gardens—were maybe meant to be architects. But if I was an architect maybe I would have been meant to be a painter.
Textures are reaching out, communicating. Navigating the world through touch rather than knowledge. It’s a kind of trust in what is in front of you.