Imagined Interiors opened last night at C Space Gallery in the Frame Arts Warehouse, Winnipeg, MB. The body of work in the exhibition discusses my perspective on communication as a layperson recently treated for lymphatic cancer. Through a series of drawings and a sculpture, the work makes comment on how a variety of medical professionals communicate with patients who do not have a scientific or medical background (and the successes and failures of that communication). The show runs until August 1st.
My sculpture “Mass” is a representation of an imagined interior form inspired by my experience with the medical system. As a patient recently treated for lymphatic cancer, being able to visualize the internal forms that were causing my illness was an important part of gaining an understanding of my condition. Although my condition was described to me by various medical professionals throughout my treatment these descriptions varied greatly and there was little visual information available. Drawing on conversations with hospital staff, I created an abstracted form that represents the interior mass I imagined. By making my interpretation of these descriptions visible, the work evolved into a commentary on the way that the medical system communicates with individuals who do not have a scientific or medical background. The suspended form and taught woven contours illustrate the volume and weight I imagined. I stayed away from materials and colours that imitate and reference traditional medical illustration and models intending to invoke in viewers a curiosity about the form similar to the curiosity I felt about my condition.
Over the past few months I have been producing hand cast porcelain flasks and water bottles. The bottles are cast from the forms of antique glass bottles.
I began by pairing two materials which I have always had an affinity for – porcelain and leather – and constructing by hand a fitted casing for each individual bottle with a cross-body strap. I hope that this addition will make my hand made flasks and water bottles a practical fit for summer parties, barbecues, and music festivals.
Recently I have been working on functional ceramic pieces – some of which are traditionally glazed, and others which have ties to my work in drawing and painting. To access these new works click the “Ceramics” tab in the navigation bar on the home page. For more on my process and the creation of those pieces visit http://www.publicsketchbook.jux.com – here I share photographs and thoughts about my creative process.
Pictured above is a detail from a recent work titled Dissection IIII. New linocut embossings are now included under the “Print” heading. Check it out!
I am always interested in seeing the private processes and creative sanctuaries of other artists and creators – so I have decided to share mine. While this site is set up to showcase my work, I also keep a less formal blog of my process, current projects and the things that inspire me.
Check out my blog at: www.publicsketchbook.jux.com
Previous explorations lead me to become interested in ways of supplementing speech – particularly ways that are visual. I began to look at gesture and the way in which the negative space and invisible forms suggested become an informative visual. I studied my own hands as well as those of doctors and family members and documented their movement as well as the space between them.
Pictured above; Gesture I, II and III.
My most recent body of work discusses failures in communication and problems of knowledge and understanding. I first became interested in this subject matter as I navigated cancer treatment. Drawing on my own experience with Cancer Care Manitoba, this body of work discusses the evolution of how I understood my illness. I feel it is difficult to express this without the work also becoming a critique of this part of the medical system and discussing how the system communicates with patients without a scientific or medical background. I kept track of the different ways in which my condition was described to me by various medical professionals. I made drawings that reflected the form I imagined as each description changed my perception of what was inside me. Although they were all describing the same condition, the descriptions I was given varied greatly. I have titled the pieces with phrases spoken by medical professionals as they tried to guide me to an understanding of my condition. I hope that the viewer will be curious about the drawn forms, similar to the curiosity I felt as my condition was described to me.