When I received a complete set of MRIs of my brain in 2011, it seemed like new terrain. Neuroscience became my entry into science, history, and culture, where I investigate a wide range of sources that speak to who we are, where we come from, and why we are the way we are. DNA, phytoplankton, and neurons: not only do these structures code for physical expression, supply the oxygen we breathe, and give rise to thought, but I am drawn to their pattern and symmetry. Maps, math, music, and machines: these cultural sources elucidate how we read, analyze, and interpret.
My work explores this collision of biology and culture.
Stampings of industrial products into clay are a metaphor for the imprint of technology onto human structures. My prints -- with neural mappings and multiple layers of data lost and accumulated -- underscore the cellular fragility of memory and mind.
BRAIN SCAPES series
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) allows scientists to safely peer into the living, thinking human brain. A deep interest in biology and structure drew me to human MRI slices taken from the axial direction, horizontal to the upright body. In this work, I’ve merged MRI scans with clay because clay, like the brain, is plastic and malleable. Into slabs of clay I’ve pressed tools and gadgets from industry and technology and heightened these impressions with pigment. Once fired to 2040 degrees Fahrenheit, the dented ceramic comes to resemble bio scapes marked by culture. The digital brain scans, combined with the scarred geologic material, become a metaphor for the plasticity and impressionability of mind.
URBAN FOSSIL series
Inspired by geometry and human proportion, these sculptures are formed through the curvature of two-dimensional planes. The work imagines an archeologist finding stately forms pocked with the tools and trash of everyday life. Pure ceramic pigments and an earthen palette evoke prehistory while the pressings of industrial waste elicit the flawed beauty of the contemporary moment. The series explores the themes of loss, stillness, and the passage of time.