Deceptively simple, my work suggests a narrative by presenting a frozen moment in time. I aim to preserve and give authority to the everyday experience through a mix of art, architecture, design and science. Using appropriated images, film stills, magazine clippings, and staged photographs as a starting point, I depict banal scenes that have the potential to be spectacular and fantastic. I portray often-overinflated expectations of the way we live and how we try to better ourselves from previous generations. “Supernature” is how I look at nature in art, science, design and the future. Motivated by Margaret Atwood’s apocalyptic novels Oryx and Crake, Year of the Flood, and MaddAddam, I am interested in crossbred animals, plants and hybrid technology. The now-defunct SkyMall has often been a source for my work. The quarterly-published magazine contained a “broad selection of unique products, gifts and cool gadgets from catalog companies and specialty retailers.” The magazine appeals to the buyer’s need for simplicity, a need for new technology, and a need for consuming. Several items caught my eye year after year while passing time on the tarmac, the Real Rock Fake Rock Covers and the solar garden decorations. One caption read, “these glowing rocks could create a mysterious, otherworldly atmosphere.” After seeing a retrospective exhibition of Eadweard Muybridge at the Tate Britain, I was inspired to buy the catalog only to cut up as a series of sketches. I struggled finding inspired “otherworldly atmospheres” and was drawn to the true monumentality of his photographs of Yosemite National Park. Since working with the Muybridge photos, travel has become an integral part of my working process as I search for extremes in landscape and light. Naturally occurring spectacles, such as the red tide, the Northern Lights, or simply fields of fireflies have become a new focus and backdrop to create collaborations between nature, science and technology.
Dedee Shattuck Gallery | March 30 - May 1, 2016 | Works on Paper