Oh, and look out - I'm subversive too.
The word for today is: "biotechnonanogenomicology," brought to you by Joel Achenbach of the Washington Post.
And now, why plates?
My artwork is domestic in that it is meant to be seen in a living-space. It is also craft based. As it says at the top of the page, I make things. A lot of art that is popular now doesn't necessarily result in an object that one can hold in one's hands. I think that can be incredibly interesting and effective but that isn't what I do. I'm interested in the processes that go into creating objects that live in three dimensional spaces and that one can encounter in the course of ordinary life.
I'm also interested in how an art object changes perceptions in the viewer (I'm going to use the term "viewer" because it's shorter but what I mean is the "interactor" since there's a great deal of art that is more than just "viewed") Ideally when one interacts with art one's view of the world is shifted. The experience one has is noticeably different after one has been with art than it was before. I LOVE when this happens to me. I guess I'm greedy for mental transportation. It makes me feel like my brain has more space to run around in - one of my favorite sensations.
Since I love this feeling so much I think everyone ought to be able to feel it every day. The easiest way to accomplish this: domestic art, art for the home. Just little things here and there that can transport you to another reality for a small space of time.
One way to give a viewer a jolt in perception is to tweak their expectiations. Plates are commonly used as a decorative element to make a room feel more cozy. One might walk into a room where these plates were hung on the wall over the sideboard or sofa and think, "how quaint - decorative plates," if one bothered to think about it at all. But these plates aren't quaint. They spell out words that most people have troubling associations with and the designs on them are a little strange.
I hope the viewer then goes on to examine their thoughts about a number of things like: Why does my friend have those words up on her dining room wall? What do Mayhem, Lust and Greed mean? What is appropriate decor for a domestic space? Is art decor or something else? (Believe me, LOTS of people haven't thought about that at all) What is cozy? What is the function of coziness and how is it important? How would I feel if I lived with these plates on my wall? Would I enjoy looking at them?
Or maybe they don't think about any of that. Maybe they just add another question mark to the pile of puzzles in the back of their heads, think "that was weird," and go on with their day.
I guess I may also be trying to cajole the viewer into seeing things my way: "Plates are nice, ordinary, comforting. Maybe mayhem's not so bad?" Or maybe it's my version of an inspirational sampler but mine's for pirates. I'm trying to make mayhem, lust and greed into family values. And that I am because I secretly believe that if everybody thought adventurously then the world would be a better place. I've also got an idea for an afghan that says mayhem, lust, greed. Talk about cozy!