At Home

In this body of work, I explored the concept of home and searched for a Heideggerian sense of being-in-the-world through the visual study of my studio, Pendleton West 321. Adopting the idea of the space-place-home continuum as put forth by geographer Yi-Fu Tuan, I thought of painting as a means to thoroughly familiarize myself with the space and turn it into a place. Aiming to minimize movement and to encourage a state of contemplation, I reduced the room into flat shapes but preserved representative impulses; I had a formal interest in color and overlapping surfaces but welcomed moments of recognition and comfort, too. First, I dwelt on small canvas on wood surfaces, which at as small as 6x6″ became miniature objects. According to philosopher Gaston Bachelard’s The Poetics of Space, miniatures are gates which open up new worlds. I entered these worlds by taking Bachelard’s metaphorical magnifying glass: I enlarged small segments of my paintings onto large canvases stretched directly on studio walls. Painting from painting, with composition and color already determined, I reduced my process to re-mixing color and applying paint. In this familiar process and in the environment of large canvases, I was at home.

In May 2012, my project culminated in the three-woman exhibition "Here and Now" at the Jewett Gallery of Art and my essay "At Home: Explorations in Painting," published online in the Wellesley College Digital Scholarship and Archive. My work was supported by the Wellesley College Art Department and the Pamela Daniels Fellowship.