I investigate found microstructures that mimic organic and non-organic forms. In the process of creating Trace, a variety of artistic strategies most commonly associated with Surrealism are used. This includes the de-contextualization of signs, the appropriation of found objects, and the contortion of mimicry.
Trace signifies both an elusiveness of form as well as a metaphor of desire. The title Trace implies both the action of drawing/copying, and a physical impression or remnant of what was. The process of Trace lends itself to an emerging environmental consciousness that includes research in ecology, environmental philosophy, and systems theory.
My grandparent’s relationship to the environment was dictated by their work and recreation. One of these activities for my grandmother was building scenes by both making and staging taxidermy animals in front of painted backgrounds-or dioramas. Thus my first exposure to dioramas was in the eccentric home of my grandparents. From the interior of my grandparents home were two windows; one a literal window in which I looked out onto the white, snowy slopes of Mt. Hood, the second, a fabricated illusion, which was simultaneously an exploitation and celebration of the natural world.
I am interested in photographing dioramas as a way of honoring and exploring both the illusions of my childhood and the unique culture of the diorama. I am interested in investigating ideas of perception and how these constructed ways of viewing and seeing inform our ideas about reality and nature. There is a lot to be learned about ourselves, and our perceptions of nature by looking through these “scenes.” This is an ongoing body of work that I began in the winter of 2003. The included dioramas were taken from the American Natural History Museum in New York City, The Royal British Museum, Victoria, BC, Buffalo Science Museum, Buffalo, New York, and the Wildlife Museum, Tucson, Arizona.