In my long-running figurative series, I examine aspects of growing old: isolation, loneliness, privacy and dignity. I reflect on solitude and issues of being elderly, including invisibility. My imagery is chosen to portray the effects of age and wisdom, and how experience enables people to cope with the often-overwhelming world they navigate. Working with the theme of aging and specifically old age leads me to question concepts of what is beautiful – or not. Often narrative, my quilt art focuses on relationships between the individual and society. My themes reference the concept of control: who or what is in control and the struggle to maintain control in the face of external conditions. The notions of borders, edges and margins intrigue me, as well as ideas of what is within.
My work examines presence and absence. A special concern for me currently is migration and displacement: being included or excluded. I think about people dispersed and their reactions to change; reading cultures other than one’s own; resident, native or migrant; refugee, expat, exile. A migrant’s identity is often reduced to a number on an identity card or passport: a numeric code, a cypher.
In a related series about natural and manmade environments, I explore how change impacts perceptions. I look for parallels and metaphors that cross between rural and urban; natural spaces and populated constructed places; human characteristics and nature.
I have a long interest in history told through marks and wear on walls. On my travels, I sought out walls with visible signs of their past to photograph. While the immediate impetus for my newest series is a response to recent predominance of wall-talk in the media; the concept of borders, barriers and border crossing corresponds to my longer-term interest in migration.
In all of my art, I balance the information I present with what I leave unstated; thus letting the viewer continue the stories I begin. I love a walk in the fog – mist starts my mind working to see more than eyes reveal, to fill in blanks and imagine the obscured.