Particularly drawn to the home and its residents, I respond to found remnants of domestic culture for their associations with comfort and home. Regardless of the media, I make handmade marks by drawing, cutting and sewing that reveal flaws and display evidence of my imperfection, creating a tension between discomfort and familiarity. As timeless methods of mending and fixing, I use sewing and gluing as metaphors for “keeping it together” in a time when so many things are falling apart. Like social engagement and activism, much of my work employs small gestures, made over a long period of time, that culminate in a large result.
I seek out used clothes, found photographs, old magazines and discarded debris from thrift stores and yard sales across the country. This domestic detritus is handed-down, passed along, thrown away, stained, smelly, loved, torn, timeless and Someone Else’s. I use these materials as stand-ins for American families and individuals. They are familiar, aged, incongruous, disjointed, varied, nuanced and complex. In my quilts and collages, they become one harmonious form, and their unification can call to attention the magnitude of what is possible when we recognize that what binds us together is the very thing that distinguishes us from each other.
In a climate of polarized citizenry, civil unrest and stolen dreams, my work explores the physical and psychological implications of domestic artifacts, relationships, policies and systems on our society’s obsession with, and definition of, the American Dream.