Text Table acts 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.
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 recite 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.
This work originally stemmed from my own pitfalls with learning a new language (Spanish) and the miscommunications that ensued. While some moments are slightly humorous, the paired words might also become a metaphor for larger, more serious misunderstandings across borders.
Lines of Communication
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
Open Air Mattress Talks
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 associated with transition. 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).
An after school activity was conducted with the Boys & Girls Club of Baton Rouge, LA. Students were the space to reimagine a place they spend the majority of their day – school.
Planning Period Poems
During my first year of teaching middle school English, I wrote a small poem each day inspired by a moment, feeling, or observation.
Handmade Wasp Nests
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.
Found Mud Dauber Nests
Mud dauber wasps used slip and clay from our studio to build their homes. In an attempt to make their temporary constructions permanent, I fired and glazed them in a kiln. However, the process rendered them unlivable.