Elizabeth Morisette

Domestic Helmet
curlers and cotton twine
7 x 14 x 5 in.

Collecting is part of the American culture. It is implicit within our society. The success of such television shows as the “Antique Road show” caters to this phenomenon. Somehow, we have equated ‘stuff’ with purpose. This is the basis for a series of work I call “Recollections-collections of a lifetime found on ebay”. For the past year I have been acquiring items on the online marketplace called ebay. Most of these items are collections individuals have acquired over time. I find it interesting that people spend such time and effort on collections and that they are willing to part with them so easily on ebay. Some of these items are intriguing because they cause you to ask why the stuff was collected in the first place, like the box full of white plastic rings. What were they for? How did this person end up with 5,000 of them and why sell it on ebay? With some of the materials the purpose is more obvious, like in the case of a swizzle stick collection. If you are on vacation, what better souvenir? Especially if you paid $5.00 for the drink, you might as well take the stir stick. But, what happens when grandma dies? We all might like the china, but the Stir Stick collection? These are just a few of the interesting questions you get when you try to guess why people collect things and what to do with them when they are done. These pieces each have many stories to tell. This series explores the human need to collect and explores what our collections say about us.

© Elizabeth Morisette