Casts of the artist's tongue are made out of chalk – a fragile, pedagogical material. Viewers are invited to use the tongues as writing tools, reorienting the relationship between speech and writing.
A pair of speakers recites a list of Spanish and English false friends back and forth as if in conversation. False friends are words that sound and look alike in both languages but have completely different meanings. These words often share similar origins, however over time have gradually drifted apart. In this way, language begins to tell a history of both similarity and difference.
Juggling string becomes a metaphor for navigating spaces between languages. Using experience as a starting point, I interviewed my mother about her use of Spanish and English as a person who was born and raised in Panama, then later moved to the United States. As the performance progresses, these (blood) lines become tangled, crossed, and inevitably bound to one another.
Multi channel HD video.
Lines of Communication
A soft and intimate part of the body, the tongue, is cast out of bronze. Viewers are invited to touch the tongues. By doing so, a vocal sound is triggered. Each tongue elicits the sound of syllables from different languages.
A Collective Text
A table as a platform for viewers to build words with tactile letter tiles. Once a word is assembled and placed on a slither of green felt, the participant pushes a shiny red button that will capture it with a photo and enter it into a database. Words are then pulled at random and placed into a text that is projected on an adjacent wall.
The words are constantly being scrambled by chance, creating a collective portrait of those that participated.
Video coming soon.
Open Air Mattress Talks
An ongoing series of intimate conversations between students, professors, and the general public on various sites around the Arizona State University campus to talk about sexual wellness.
Participants sit on air mattresses, as a partial nod to Emma Sulkowicz’s mattress-lugging durational performance on Columbia’s campus, but also as a metaphor for the intimacy and relative innocence of student life and sexual exploration.
The mattresses are arranged in a circle and a stack of collectively written questions are passed around, encouraging the group to open up about topics related to sexual wellness. “What does a healthy relationship look like to you?” reads one. “What was your sexual education like?” reads another. Some are more personal, “Will you tell me about your first kiss?” or “What’s one piece of sex-related advice you would give to your 15-year-old self?”
381 Foreclosures in Vermont
There were 381 foreclosures in Vermont during the month I lived there. I built the same amount of houses using cardboard, an ephemeral material. Fellow artists and writers at the Vermont Studio Center were invited to assist in construction. The houses were a little larger than monopoly game pieces.
Upon completion, all houses were put up for sale. Each had a corresponding deed card that listed the price, mortgage rate, and a statistic about foreclosures in the United States.
Viewers could purchase a house by simply removing it from the table. In doing so, they entered an agreement to mail the mortgager (me) small monthly payments of $.75 per house.
If their payments were late or not received, I forwarded foreclosure notices asking that they return their house(s).
A wasp nest was used as a metaphor for home. Fifteen were created by hand out of clay and paper. Upon running one's hand across the top of each nest, a zip code could be read in braille – connecting each to a specific place. Having had a relatively nomadic upbringing, all zip codes corresponded to locations of my childhood homes.
An ad was also placed in the Houses for Rent section of the local newspaper, inviting prospective renters to the gallery for a tour of their potential new home.