Fingers Crossed (2018)
yarn, faux fur, vinyl, and organza
60 x 42 x 48 in.
In my sculptures, visceral scenes are entangled with cartoon-inspired visuals, displaying a tragic sense of humor. Creatures that are being flayed, tarred and feathered, or molting are symbols of not being comfortable in my own skin.
Saturated colors and furry textures are juxtaposed with taxidermy jaws and gore, in my work. Delicate, sheer fabrics and faux fur “soften the blow,” making anxieties easier to confront. The response of attraction/repulsion that we have to this imagery relates to the emotional complexity inherent in our relationships, fantasies, and anxieties.
Iconic works from art history, such as the Capitoline She-Wolf, the Laocoön Group, the Arnolfini Portrait, etc., often serve as a starting point for my work. An expressive mark-making is formed from my sewing aggressively by hand. The unrefined stitches of red thread flow throughout the work. After an exhibition, I reuse my materials by cutting up my old sculptures to make new work. This creates a layered history in the materials, similar to pentimenti (the subtle evidence of corrections in a painting, originating from “repentance”).
© Kelly Boehmer