The boundary between public and private is socially and politically maintained through the regulation of behavior. This boundary weaponizes shame, as a tool of a surveillance culture, to silence divergent narratives and maintain dominant social frameworks. I find thin places where the border between personal and communal is less clearly defined. I investigate this boundary by juxtaposing people’s voyeuristic desire to peek into someone else’s intimate information against their expectations of how they are supposed to occupy public space. I interrogate the value of the delineation between intimate and public, and question who benefits from its construction.
Collection of Self, Dead skin, hair, and nail cells collected over seven days, 2019
I acknowledge my constant death through the collection of the parts of myself that slough off my body throughout the day. For seven days, I collected all the skin, hair and nail cells that fell from my body using a personal collection method and daily cleaning ritual. Each daily collection of cells is stored in a correspondingly dated manilla envelope.
Collective Grief, A variety of personal and communal grief, 2019
Participants were asked to place different materials into a communal vessel; allowing those materials to serve as a metaphor for their personal experiences with grief in its many forms. In return for their participation, each person was given a vial of Communal Grief. This grief was concentrated from the collective grief additions of previous participants.
Vessel, Bronze, 8” x 8” x 2½”, 2019
People consistently are used as vessels for the concerns, secrets, and confessions of others. Sharing private information is a necessary tool for processing information, understanding emotions, and considering possible actions. In order to question both the way in which we use others as tools for confiding and the political and socially determined value exchange that goes along with it, I have created a tool that replaces humans as the vessel for confession.
Yours, Ours, Mine, Curtains and abandoned windows, 2019-present
In this ongoing project, I explore how curtains demarcate a specific point in physical space that separates the two theoretical realms of private and public. In a series of performative gestures, curtains are installed in different abandoned locations. A division between private and public narratives no longer exists within these spaces, yet they still hold the remnants of personal human experience within them. Through decay and vitiation, the external environment has begun to take over the interior. By installing curtains within these overlooked sites, the separation between public and private is temporarily restored.
Marking Trauma, 61 events, one community, 2018
Marking Trauma uses Harris Lines; transverse, mineralized lines found on the body’s long bones associated with temporary growth arrest from pathological levels of stress or trauma, to map the accumulation of trauma over the lifetime of fourteen individuals.
The Gift of Death, ciphered letters of everything I’ve wanted to say, 2020
In my thesis project, I reveal the intimate details of my life to everyone I know by name before my inevitable death. Encoded and written by hand using a simple substitution cipher, this collection of letters reveals deeply private information about my intimate relationships, secrets, and fears. A thin barrier exists between the content of these letters, and public consumption as the cipher renders these letters unreadable. The only obstacle preventing you from reaching the secrets of the intimate is a line drawn in the sand - easily destroyed with a simple application of force.