By the mid-80’s I wanted to undermine the precious quality of the embossed metal surfaces, so I began to use found materials and old roofing metal with increasingly smaller amounts of the metal repoussé. My concepts remained an investigation of shrine like vernacular architecture and the construction of the self, particularly as related to women in contemporary culture. During a residency In Cortona, Italy in 1986, I found new forms to reference while working in an abandoned grade school studio. Forms either began much smaller or much larger than I had been working. Many of the cross-like forms became so large I could almost inhabit them. They began to take on my proportions as well. I now feel like this was a beginning for my containers for the self series fifteen years later. I continued to combine the distressed metal with video, film and photo documentation of more recent performance tableaux in Italy, Egypt, Asia, and Iowa.
8 min. (1538 words)