I work with objects. Any object, whether new or old, has a history and is situated within a context. A process created it. Intent was embedded in it. It has a use or it lost its use.

It is sometimes the object itself that I am interested in exploring, or that I am attracted to, but more often it is a combination of its existing and possible context that I investigate. Intent on my part is both unavoidable and desirable.

Wherever an object is situated, layers of meaning are embedded in it. By recontextualizing - by creating an installation or a scenario - new meaning is established. This new meaning, or significance, is always based on what was already latent in the object itself.

 

By taking an object and bringing it into a situation - which always entails bringing it into contact with another object and an environment - the object, and now objects, are allowed to perform in a way they might not, or could not, have done before.

I am rarely interested in working with just one object. Somehow the repeated statement, the slight variations within an ensemble or a field, is important for the meanings I need to access. Most often this is combined with a need to transform, or restate, an existing physical space.

Multiple objects engage in time differently, allowing the viewer to observe and contemplate, freeing attention from its reliance on customary, or ordinary, webs of associations.

The written language usually comes into play at one or another stage of the development of a piece. The way I search for, or investigate, objects, I search for, and investigate, ways of formulating thoughts, ways of perceiving, ways of reflecting; especially thoughts related to reflections within the fields of natural history and anthropology where they move into philosophy.

For quite some time my focus has been on the writings of Henry David Thoreau, Jean-Baptiste Lamarck, Bruno Schulz, Victor Segalen and Lefcadio Hearn. I often place actual writing in my installations, providing the viewer text fragments as well as visual information. Ultimately my work is about language; language as it weaves into nostalgia, beauty, celebration, death.

Detail of "Connecticut Yucca Cabinet (for Susan Hamlet), 2009

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