Lost, Remain, Fracture
Lost, remain, fracture is a series of clay sculptures made by weaving pieces on a small floor loom, dipping them in clay slip, forming them as much as possible given the constraints of the material, and firing them so that the woven fibers burn out in the kiln. The process combines two of my material interests, clay, and fibers. I’m drawn to both media that are situated in culture and history as functional and expressive objects that, in working with them, connect me to a lineage of makers. Both media to me also connote my body– in fibers, especially woven cloth, the material is pliable, soft, able to be a mimetic link to skin, while the structure of ceramics mirrors bones, even to the point where clay can be used to help with mending bone. The pieces are arranged in an altar– one that is like my body, like other bodies, and like the body of the land.
The inherent aliveness of the pieces is deeply significant in working with
them. In the year plus since I started making the first experiments in what became the Lost, remain, fracture series, I have experimented with a myriad of ways to arrange the pieces. I have felt that in combining and recombining the pieces that
they have spoken to me, whispering “no” or “yes” in how they live in a space. They are a tool for exploring Mel Chen’s living/dead animacy hierarchy, and a site for inviting in magic in the way they speak. The process of weaving is an inherently animist project of touching and being touched back.
These pieces exist for me as a portal of connection, drawing invisible lines between themselves and my body, radiating outward. In the final installation I arrange them in the living medium of soil, collected (by butters) from the farm where I work, in an altar.