Map of the Self
I began this piece back when I was a wee tike of nine or so. My best friend at the time, Mandy and I had taken an interest in french knitting (I now call it cheater's knitting) and were both racing to who can make the longest rope (one is intended to sew the ropes into spirals to create potholders and rugs and things, but we were just thinking of our competition). After some time we both got bored with it and turned to other interests as children often do and mine got stuffed back in the closet.
Years later in college, we were asked to do a project based on a mapping of the self. For the first time in probably a decade I thought of this bazaar, yarn rope I had once began and seeked it out. The yarns used were a mishmash of different colors and lengths and when arranged as it is intended had the impression of tree rings. It was perfect (though I did feel a little funny about presenting a craft I had created as a child). To honor the project, I have continued adding on ever since. What was once maybe a dozen feet or so is now countless (I honestly have no idea how long it actually is). I would bring it along everywhere and knit while watching tv, while manning the garage sale, while at the park. I pick out yarns whenever I find something that strikes me whether at the thrift store or at a real yarn shop and I have received yarns as gifts from people that I can knit into my life. I began carrying it in a little heart shaped backpack and now it's grown to the point that my mother had to fashion me a new bag large enough to contain it. She keeps trying to get me to end this one and just begin a new one for portability reasons. As pragmatic as it would be, I don't foresee doing that. It's cumbersome and heavy but then again, what a perfect example of art imitating life!
Oh, and if you are reading this, Mandy... I think I won.
I had the opportunity to create an installation focused on my senior thesis, the color pink. I wanted to create an experience of emersion in the color to the point of overwhelming and forcing the eyes to compensate for the hyper saturation. To do this, I built a 4x4 room and painted the interior fluorescent pink. There was a single doorway where a white wall was standing a few feet away. After spending time in the pink room and the participant proceeded to exit, the eyes would have adjusted to correct the extreme so much that the wall outside would no longer appear white, but green (the opposite of pink/red). I am unfortunately not currently finding any photos of the full structure (which is frustrating), but the man in the photo on the right is my Uncle Mike.
If it were not for his assistance and his mastery of carpentry, my dream of bringing this work to life would never have been possible.