This body of work is informed by my own experience of constant migration. My practice is grounded in the photographic images of my current ‘home’ where the iconic silos and rice dryers of Texas dominate the landscape. The actions of hunting, shooting, dissecting, cutting, folding and concealing these images mimic the migrants vilification. What is hidden between the folds are the unjust truths. Utilizing a hands on meditative approach leads to a transformation of folded and constructed imagery. My interest is in the materiality and physicality of the photograph which becomes an object in itself.
My 1-1 today with Wendy was really helpful. I now have a really clear idea of the way forward with this series of silo folds. I aim to work initially on refining my CRoP. Wendy said would really help to inform the work and pave the way for FMP submission. I aim to set up gallery shots and have prepared work for plotter prints to be made. This will help me to visualize a gallery setting. This will also let me see what some different print sizes could bring to this series.
Despite having imposter syndrome, I now feel a bit more confident in my direction.
Date of Supervision Meeting
14 July 2021
Start time of Meeting
Length of Meeting in minutes
Meeting Notes & Action Points
Great meeting today with Wendy. Current work is in a good place. Things to look at, refining messaging in CRoP, this will help with FMP descriptor. Reshoot images in gallery context for Sawyer Yards. Experiment with different background space within each silo portrait. Look at Sarah Charlesworth and Rafael Dallaporta.
Date of Next Proposed Meeting
Next meeting either Wednesday 4th at 3.30 GMT, or Tuesday 10th at 3.30 GMT. TBD depending on work flow.
Vigilante militia and treacherous journeys in excessive temperatures are just the beginning for some migrants. The Rio Grande looks calm, but it is wide and has dangerous undercurrents. Many migrants choose this route, not all make it. They are known disparagingly as ‘wetbacks’. Some migrants choose to make their way to the US through the desert. Good people will leave water in a hope they find it, and are able to keep hydrated.
If they cross the border safely, there could have many more problems ahead. Some of the things that have been documented are forced sterilization and hysterectomies, women are made to sign papers that are written in a language that they do not understand. Children are moved away from their parents into hotels, or transported to isolated asylum camps where they speak of unsanitary conditions, abuse and neglect.
Entering the country as an illegal immigrant puts extra pressure on those individuals. One case where Cristhian Bahena Rivera a Hispanic man who was sentenced for the first degree murder of Iowa college student Mollie Tibbetts in 2018. New evidence suggests that Rivera was threatened with the murder of his former girlfriend and child if he did not confess to Tibbetts murder. Rivera was targeted because he had entered the US illegally.
This body of work is informed by my own experience of constant migration. My practice is grounded in the photographic images of my current ‘home’ where the iconic silos and rice dryers of Texas dominate the landscape. These silos are metaphors for migrants. The actions of hunting, dissecting, cutting, folding and concealing, these images mimic the migrants vilification, what is hidden between the folds are the unjust truths. Utilizing a hands on meditative approach leads to a transformation of folded and constructed imagery. My interest is in the materiality and physicality of the photograph, which becomes an object in itself.
The aim is to invite the viewer in while gently touching upon very sensitive issues relating to all migrants.
The silos and rice dryers are metaphors for migrants and their unjust truths.
My silent protest is in making art that is a reflection upon those truths. Paper has a memory, you can work with it, which is very satisfying. However, you have the ability to work against it, to push it’s boundary, to make it do what you want, to fold and bend it to your will. This is when it becomes really engaging, when we hunt the image, dissect, remove, and fold.
These pieces are vastly reduced in size once folded, they can be quite complicated to construct. The hands on meditative approach is important, the folds conceal the difficulties, the hardships the vilification of our fellow humans. My thoughts are of all the things that I want to be revealed, which crack in the silo wall, which doorway, bridge, light or walkway.
“My hands intervene with each work manually, and through this intimate, performatic ritual, the embodiment of the photograph becomes the common ground where the familiar and the foreign meet, as an individual attempt to blur the lines between the internal and external spaces of the body. The construction of these mental maps evokes diverse psychological states and emotions with meanings that are in constant flux, never fixed, just like our identities.” Marina Font.
This hands on approach is so important in my work. Marina Font shares the importance of it in her work too. I have always thought of what I do as performative and meditative, a ritual of sorts, a way to engage with my surroundings in a new and unknown space. Emotions and meanings are in flux here, but unlike Font my work has little to do with identity. Fonts quote definitely hits many similar notes when I compare how we work. Unique state is important to me as I currently wrestle with object and photograph of object. Is the object more interesting, more important? Do these objects help inform the folds?
At my last 1-1 meeting with Colin Pantall we discussed making a short run of books. We also talked about making a dummy book of images. These past few weeks have been about collecting images, and writing text for the dummy. The covers were made using paper made for packing belongings. The image is a transfer of a silo photograph on cotton fabric. The fabric is hand torn to the correct size to fit the book. The ‘well handled’ look is exactly what I was aiming for, it adds to the well travelled feeling of the object. The spine is open with a combination of kettle and long stitch.
After my 1-1 meeting with Colin where we discussed a potential short run of books. I gathered images and stuck them to the studio wall. They will be rearranged frequently so that I can make the best selections for the book. I aim to make a dummy first, this is the best way for me to imagine a final outcome.