"Public Image": This new series was started in late December 2020 and is still in process. It was started in part in response to retiring from my arts administration job and the shedding of persona necessitated by the role.
This is text-based work for which I have chosen labels that have been applied to me throughout my life by others. Unlike those who suffer/ed from labelling and accompanying bullying, while feeling like a "freak" most of the time, I also felt empowered by being labelled "different". Therefore, this is not work that addresses trauma, hurt or bullying but rather embraces and shines a light on "freakiness". It is more of a celebration of the truth about me, which is not to say that I am ignoring the socio-political act of reclaiming language. I am very much taking these labels and saying, Yes! That's me! I hope that others recognize the humour in the works while perhaps finding comfort through them for their own freakiness.
As an artist I respond to the materiality of various media and for this series chose punch-hook rugmaking, although the works are intended only as wall pieces and not floor mats. This choice of media is aligned with the feminist art practice (started the 1970s) of elevating traditional female crafts to Art - especially for making political statements about erasure, exclusion and representation. So in keeping with that art history, I am using rugmaking to amplify my conceptual intentions.