My primary artistic work is comprised of short video pieces that portray a cultural feminist perspective on historical and social issues, ranging from epidemic disease to domestic labor. The work is screened at film and video festivals and/or exhibited in a gallery or museum setting.
One objective of my work is to challenge existing media genres. Timeline explores nonlinear storytelling through a single channel video form. The intent was to replicate the workings of memory where one image or sound can trigger another. Talkcycle pushes the conventions of soap opera to tell a story of domestic conflict and resolution. Through the exclusive use of close-ups and medium close-ups, melodramatic vignettes are strung together to create the narrative. plague: a visitation and assuming risk explore the line between fiction and nonfiction.
Generally, I start with a topic that engages me. Then, through the research stage, the formal challenges emerge. With Proverbial Wisdom the form came first. I was interested in the possibilities of mobile video – creating message-sized videos that would work as visual messages. This led to thinking about proverbs or colloquial sayings as ways of communicating universal truths through metaphor.
My work often has an historical component. Parallels are drawn between a historical figure or event and a current reality. In plague: a visitation, the bubonic plague of the 17th century is explored from the three different perspectives. There is a firsthand historical narrative, drawn from Daniel Defoe’s A Journal of a Plague Year, retold by a current day “Chronicler.” Scientific explanations of cause and symptoms of the plague are delivered by the “Expert” in the mode of a news anchor. The more humanistic response is illustrated by the recitation of Psalm 91 from the Old Testament and by a young boy singing Ring Around the Rosy. In the day stalin's mother brought him home from the hospital the historical figure of Joseph Stalin is viewed through the subjective lens of history and questioning about the origin of evil.
The point of view that underlies all of my work is that of cultural feminism. I seek to validate a feminine perspective that derives from an undervalued domestic sphere.
The Housework Videos communicate ambivalence towards the activity of keeping house. On one hand, the activity of house cleaning is repetitive, even meditative, offering the satisfaction of accomplishing something uncomplicated and concrete. On the other hand, there is the frustration at the Sisyphusian nature of the task and feminist disdain for its unimportance.