Portfolio > Material Drift: Speculative Collage for an Uncertain Future

Material Drift: Speculative Collage for an Uncertain Future.

These mixed media collisions verge on haphazard material explosions but are in fact self-contained eddies of content and form, culled from a diverse material drift, brimming with ideas and empathy. Gritty, hybrid forms, they protrude from the wall unevenly to reveal moments of intrigue, material innovation, unexpected craft and visual poetry, as well as anxiety and dissolution. My obsessive iterative-ness opens the studio to a physical state of entropy (material breakdown and drift) that I employ in my efforts to compose finished works. My material choices are not random, nor reasoned, but speak to larger patterns and systems that act around, within and upon us. Painting and drawing anchor my creative efforts but shards and fragments of commercial packaging play a key role in my work. As a ‘future artifact’, I turn to commercial packaging as a ubiquitous, information-filled material source with readymade optic range that rivals the palettes of Hilma af Klint, Kerry James Marshall and Massacio, combined! I appropriate (discover) text fragments, fonts, graphics, corporate and cultural signage embedded in the process that seem relevant to the course of the work.

My approach to these works, which I call, 'Smash Collage', builds on a range of influences that include Kurt Schwitters' Merz pictures (collages), speculative fiction (Octavia Butler, William Gibson), and scientific advances like, CRISPER-Cas9, the controversial gene-editing tool. CRISPR is an apt metaphor. I cut and splice materials to propagate idiosyncratic, hybrid forms. All active edges and complex layering, each piece is equal parts composition and decomposition. Scraps and fragments of commercial packaging (text, printed graphics, coded corporate icons) often cycle back into the work as cultural signifiers or strange haiku moored in the subsurface.