Academic Level at Time of Creation
Date of Creation
The sun is our grandest mother. No one really knows who our greatest grandmother is anyway. But we know that they rose and fell each day, just like our view of the sun. But some days, their lights completely disappear. Those days, dark clouds come carrying storms and rain always finds its way down. Other days our skin smolders with how bright the shine. Bright she burns, so bright we burn. I think that this heat will never slow down.
What I mean is, I’m a grounded space cadet. I’m extremely fascinated by the act of bewildering. I want to be a gardener when I grow up but I’ve never been able to keep my plants alive for long so I gift them before they go downhill. I love the sound of a pomegranate breaking open. I don’t mind that growing up in Western Kentucky has made me a classical country jukebox. I cried really hard the first time I drove through the mountains. And I’m really influenced by the folx who continually open up spaces for every identity imaginable.
The current political and social climate in the U.S. is a maelstrom to be creating within. I know that my work will expose my belief systems and psychic connections even if I don’t talk about it in this artist statement. Given how the work inherently exposes my own personal politics, I’m not sure the gallery is really on my side. But I’ll tell you this; in my work I transform traumatic or controversial subject matter into imagery that’s more palatable for the community and myself. I question the future of trans rights and reproductive rights, while promoting a space that celebrates representation. My making process is impacted by the existence and denial of the climate crisis, as seen in the Breathing Bag and the Artificial Ventilator. In each piece the forms are altered by visible pressures, mimicking the ability of oppressive systems to eclipse individuality. The tools and uniforms are laid out as a gesture of the nurture that it takes to keep this garden alive in spite of inescapable forces.
I think that until we nurture all mothers, the earth will go un-nurtured. I think that it takes a community to know what nurture is. I think that through creating, we are constantly performing with nature even if we’re not using “nature” itself.
It all goes back to how the sun is our grandest mother.
Michelle Burdine, Sarah Martin, John Utgaard, Mike Martin
AMSD Part B uses a wide variety of processes ranging from metal, fiber, ceramics, wood, video, and performance art. The largest sculpture has a length of 6 feet. Each process that's used stands as a link to metaphorical object exploration.
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Carlson, Kora, "Androgynous Mothers and Social Discomforts, Part B" (2019). B.F.A. Practicum Exhibition (ART 498). 50.