EXHIBITION STATEMENT: Sadness, Sleep, and Sanctity
In a US political season that has caused tremors in even the most ardent sleeper’s bedrooms, this installation is based on the negotiation of personal grief felt in the midst of a culture in conflict. As any insomniac may tell you, the state of tension spanning sleep and awake teeters between the mundane and a fantastical challenge of untangling threads of anxiety, contemplation, and resolve.
I once received a gift of brightly colored dishtowels with the seven days of the week embroidered on them. The trite predictability of such an object in such a complicated world surprised me and made me question the implicit narratives of domestic objects around me in new ways. In response, I cut them and reassembled their spelling to reflect a voice for those days that are not what we always wish them to be, “Disappointed Days Dishtowels.” Altering everyday objects like these towels allows me to explore narratives imbedded in the banal and challenging moments of life.
While I intend these impractical even harebrained scenarios to interrupt our normal reality, I hope that in the suspension they also offer new awareness, engender compassion, and prompt personal action into the unique challenges of this present moment.
Definition of idiom: an expression whose meanings cannot be inferred from the meanings of the words that makes it up
Playing Idioms is an ongoing artistic collaboration between Nathan Huff and Chris Rupp. Just as “a picture is worth a thousand words,” so too might the repetitions of grouped words inspire innumerable pictures? Huff and Rupp respond to various language idioms through sculptural interpretations placed inside an infinity-mirrored box. The artists’ sculptural assemblages are not literal translations of sayings, but are reconfigured maxims, which are submitted as an extension of malleable bits of language.
By creating new monthly sculptures within the space, the artists attempt to engage viewers with notions of cultural inclusion/exclusion, with the de-constructed vocabulary of a specific adage, or with the artists’ teasing humor based on the lingo of puns.