Installation, White Box Gallery, Connecticut College, Senior Thesis Show 2008 Slip-cast porcelain, porcelain paperclay, red earthenware, glaze, digital decals, gold luster, underglaze pencils and crayons, acrylic paint, epoxy, found objects
In his work Mythologies, Roland Barthes unpacks the cultural narratives that come to us by means of everyday experiences. According to Barthes, everything in the world, from the haircuts in films to the way laundry detergent is packaged, can be understood as a signifier of some sort. These signifiers, whether visual, aural, or linguistic, suggest different mythologies, or stories that we as a culture tell ourselves to help explain the world. Within these stories lie ideas about power, gender, race, and class relations, and how we as humans understand the world.
Following Barthes’ idea, the world can, if only momentarily, be reimagined as a large scale still life – a mass of objects, images, and words – arranged in a certain way to convey notions about contemporary human existence. By appropriating numerous objects, from plastic army men to discarded library books, casting them in porcelain, and then combining them with not only each other but also image and text, I hope to explore the relationships between these signifiers and the narratives they create. Specifically, I seek to explore the nature of gender relationships in contemporary American culture.