In my art practice, I map female identity, invisible labor performed by women, and the space they are asked not to consume. Paper-cut portraits of women are integrated with – and their bodies are colonized by – domestic motifs and patterns. Through photographic, mixed-media collage, I document my experience with in-vitro fertilization, an increasingly common but stigmatized procedure. This work is inspired by Mexican ex voto paintings; just as they are used to thank saints, I use this work to express boundless gratitude for my son.
In more recent work, paper-cut maps manifest as terrain suggesting weight and permanence in the tradition of masculine land art, but the ephemeral media used in the work contradict form with delicacy and an intentional lightness. In some pieces, historical maps collide with domestic patterns found in the home. In others, passages from cherished books are tucked deep within three-dimensional landforms that build themselves from the shape of the words. Basins echo bowls used for washing. A gold-and-white palette is reminiscent of my grandmother’s china as well as the crisp white slacks and bright jewelry she always wore while serving dinner. The work intentionally takes up space and gets in the way.