My work is defined by the physical space within which it is created, namely the dining room table. The space at the end of the dining room table functions as a surface for sewing, an art studio, a knitting nook, a writing desk and a dining room table. It is the framework for pieces that are conceived and made within a finite physical structure and in the interstitial moments found between folding the laundry, packing lunch for the kids and job site meetings. Shaped by constraints of time and space, I am interested in the cumulative nature of small-scale makings.
Like the heroines of literature of domestic ambivalence, as coined by Kimberly Brooks in her article “A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Mom”, the conflict between the need to create and the demands of parenthood drives my work. Moving between drawing, sewing and writing, I incorporate everyday imagery into the art as I examine the ordinary details of daily living. In writing, the stories follow the ways in which we intimately inhabit the city and the manner in which we interact with the environment. Working with fabric and thread, I design and hand-sew constructs that shape everyday life into a more refined and useful world, facilitating the relationship between the practicalities of a working mother and a desire for beauty. Using pen and ink, I draw landscapes of objects found in my kitchen. Transported to the dining room table, the ingredients of evening meals become immortalized on paper, a lasting image of the transitory memory of food.
Impossible to separate the immediacy of the world surrounding me from my work, the view of the artist as solo creator, siloed in his ivory tower, is an image we might safely confine to the past. As evidenced by shows such as Brooklyn Museum’s recent “Georgia O’Keeffe: Living Modern” or “David Bowie is”, that present us with artists whose life is as much a work of art as his/her art itself, my work is inextricably tied to my life as an immigrant, a practicing architect, a woman and a mother.
Living art, my work addresses the ordinariness of a woman’s life. The drawings, stories and sewn creations elevate the menial labor that makes up a mother’s life and remain on as a permanent reminder of the endless, repetitive tasks that fill our every living day. Made through the repetition of intimate gestures and defined by the space at the end of the dining room table, my work crosses media to remind us that the act of creation can be found in fragments of stolen time.