The White Columns Curated Artist Registry is an online catalog of digital images documenting the work of artists who are not affiliated with a commercial gallery in New York City. Each submission is reviewed by our curatorial staff; in order to be considered for the registry, one must submit work digitally via this website.
Taking imagery from newspapers and magazines, I deconstruct the icons of power that populate the printed media, such as soldiers, athletes, celebrities and politicians. When their forms are isolated, they become stripped of identifiable cues of influence or fame, and reduced to ghost-like apparitions. Yet still, they retain their posture of authority. Here, soldiers and politicians evoke the two-pronged waging of war from the metaphorical halls of power and the trenches, each isolated from the realities of the other. Athletes and celebrities invoke social hierarchies in which entertainers are cultural idols, and sports matches provide endless dramatizations of heroized men gearing up and going into battle.
The public platform of the newspaper shows us our own fascination not just with glory, but also shame and self-loathing. The shamed figure is remarkably similar in it’s media depiction, and it is clear that public shaming can bring one fame as well. What are the differences between glory and dishonor? Even suffering loss is celebrated in the media, and we can pin our fears on that person, andâ€Żhope that they will help assuage our own guilt. When we see the president bow his head in shame for a crisis, he carries that weight for us.
As a medium that is becoming near obsolete, I view the newspaper as a found object that I can edit and transform with cuts, tears, stitching, color, plaster - changing contemporary artifacts into raw and makeshift future relics. Some pieces are some crumpled and spray-painted, as if they are carefully constructed trash. And then some are reprinted like this to create another layer of construction. Other imagery is cut up and sunk into plaster and hydrocal, evoking fossils or fragments of sculptures.
I approach this work with a punk DIY ethos; using craft and everyday materials, I alter not only the shape, but also the context. While aggressively eradicating these figures in their current mass-reproduced form, I am changing them into otherworldly silhouettes that distract from their socially constructed masculinity and allow us to see the whole of them.