The Divine Comedy (2011-2012) reimagines the seven levels of purgatory (limbo, lust, gluttony, greed, anger, heresy, violence and fraud) described in Dante's 14th c. poem as a series of manmade, architectural landscapes
At the most basic level, I destroy “original” material things (print books or collections of photographs) in order to see them again. I work with different kinds of visual histories—photographic genealogies, published documentary evidence, 19th century illustrations—and am interested in visual representations that have come to stand in for history itself in our contemporary imagination. My practice consists of shuffling through the multiple layers that exist in any narrative and reflecting on the story and its possibilities in contemporary visual terms.
“Untitled (Divine Comedy 1905)” is a seven-part reworking of Dante’s Purgatorio, imagined as manmade architectural spaces rendered in volumes of dark and light, peopled with motion. My collages emerge from a tug between different storytelling instincts: representation and abstraction, the fragment and the sense of wholeness, the making of illusionistic spaces and the physical construction of actual stuff, actual surfaces. These visual dialogues are activated in the process of trying to find my way through the fuzzy contours of formalized histories.
My recent work of large-scale collages are constructed from small fragments of printed matter. Their scale and image is in dialogue, through gesture or mimicry, with the human body. The work appears as painted or inked surfaces from a distance and the work asserts it's materiality, and the slow time and the labor of making, as the viewer approaches. Up close the holes, the fingerprints, the artifacts of the printing process and fragments of recognizable photographs appear.