heirloom |ˈe(ə)rˌloōm|


a valuable object that has belonged to a family for several generations.

This of course is the simplest of definitions. The heirloom can be an object, but can also be associated with tradition and heritage. It is our connection to these objects and the circumstances surrounding them that reveal emotional attachments as well as tangible ones. I am exploring material and cultural value, the affirmation of labor, and the role of the artist’s hand in the production of these objects. But more broadly, I use the context of “handing down” objects as a reflection of what we will leave behind for the next generations and more specifically, my daughters.

My work presents juxtapositions across material, form, and subject matter. I view my work as typifying the underrepresented, discarded, disregarded, and domestic by showing relationships between the historical and the contemporary and elude to the destructive patterns of human behavior that repeat themselves over time.Most recently my work explores the concept of the heirloom through attachments to objects, imagery and processes. I incorporate traditional methods of craft such as crochet, as well as materials from the home that are often overlooked or discarded, including silk flowers, plastic plates, and plastic household recyclables to emphasize this topic. My use of a variety of media calls for an examination of the perception of materials and the meaning and hierarchies of value often associated with them. Throughout my exploration of materials I often enlist the use of the flower as metaphor, representing femininity, feminism, birth and mortality. Making my artist’s mark with these materials also embraces the positive aspects of women’s history as makers and references the domestic sphere. My material and conceptual choices often involve women’s issues and their perceived value in society.

Through my use of craft I am reinforcing the position that there are important connections between how society views women and the underclass and how it treats the natural environment. I hope to explore this interconnectedness of American habits of resource consumption and the consequences that arise with this practice. I will also continue to combine historical research and material experimentation to further my creative investigation into women’s issues.