Human beings are complex creatures, full of odd habits, perceptions, and instincts that make us unique amongst all other animals. One of our habits that I find particularly fascinating is the need for humanity to process its surroundings. Beginning with the agricultural revolution, and the transition from roaming tribes of hunter/gatherers we began to cultivate and adapt our surroundings to suite our needs. We changed the land and its resources into tools, shelter, and fuel. We turned our natural surroundings into something other than itself, and then . . . inexplicably we label these objects to identify them as natural once again. We call them organic, fresh, green, sustainable, or any of the plethora of marketing spin words to help the unnatural feel natural.
This peculiar drive to process our surroundings is the common theme in all of my work, be it the the processing of raw materials into products, the process of reproduction, or the way these transformations influence our perceptions. I've investigated this subject using food imagery, since the topic of processed foods is so relevant in the United States today, as well as, an extremely important part of my personal history. I spent years prior to making this work struggling with a misdiagnosed digestive illness, which transformed the way I viewed my surroundings. The way foods were processed, their source, and how my body would transform them became all encompassing. This became my native tongue, and now my observations speak in a language of food.
I am interested in both natural and manufactured processes, and how they degrade or uplift an object. The cycles of decay and rebirth, and the decaying of the printed plate walk along the same trajectory in the creation of my prints. Each plate is gradually destroyed, but is then reunited on the page with its previous impressions to create something greater than the individual parts. There is beauty in the destruction and deterioration that fascinates me, and compels me to continue investigating this relationship visually.
I've become inextricably connected to my fascination with the distance between source and product. The cycles of growth and decay. Humanity's drive to process its surroundings into something other than itself. The marks created by acid biting into a metal surface while etching a photogravure, and the perception of relative value that is born through the recreation of an image. I don't just make this work for myself; I create it so that others can share in my observations, and can look beyond the visible surface they are presented with day to day. Perhaps, when my viewers leave they too can see their world for the processed reconstruction that it is, and not the labels by which it is identified.