Over the past four years, I have been so excited to exhibit my work but was also scared that I wouldn’t “find my style” by the time I would show my work as a senior. This was an unsaid pressure that I put on myself. As I worked through what it meant to have a style and the importance (or unimportance) of that, I was told by multiple professors to “just keep making!”. At the time, I would nod and smile but secretly be confused and tired because I was making and showing up to the studio. Showing up is a huge part of being an artist, but another part is gently setting aside worries consisting of what will come of the art. I was afraid to make something that people I respected didn’t like. Once I started putting in long studio hours, setting aside worries, reflecting on what I made and continuing to make more, I gained confidence not solely in my artwork but in myself as an artist. This installation is something I am truly proud of because of the process it took to get here. I stayed true, accepted my mistakes along the way, and continuously checked in with myself in my making. I was made to make. This installation is me stepping into this identity.
In My Space is about quarantine this Fall in my home with my college roomies. This installation is directly inspired by my printed and embroidered piece, Quarantined. So, like Quarantined, it is my diary of the months of slowing down and being present to myself, my space and my relationships with my housemates. There was a heightened awareness of the physical space around me as well as the emotional and spiritual space within and around me. My world was put under a microscope due to external circumstances. I was able to notice bobby pins stuck in the carpet, and how quickly I went through a gallon of milk, and words printed on the bread tie. I learned so much about what it means to slow down with a community. It is very intimate. I already considered myself to be very close with my housemates, but this strange time has pushed us to a new level of closeness. Unlike Quarantined, this installation is 8×10 feet. The abstract symbols and shapes that are embroidered on my fabric in Quarantined, are painted on the gallery wall in In My Space. For the objects being represented, I use wood cutouts that I was able to make throughout the semester with a laser cutter. Shoutout to my Professor, Rob Fifield for spending hours helping me cut every single piece at least a few times. Mounting these wood cutouts in my installation created a representation of the peculiar but sacred space I had experienced this Fall.