Installation: Figge Museum of Art 2022


The electricity is still on. There must be life. But things seem to be slowly falling apart. It is difficult to know if these are ruins or works in progress.

Breakfast on Pluto (The Figge Museum of Art, October 2021 – February, 2022) is an installation juxtaposing found notes embossed on metal foil with repurposed art and studio detritus, all activated by video, movement, and light. The viewer experiences islands of light in a dark gallery, fragments of the familiar among the strange, and an uncanny sense of past and present simultaneously.

In the midst of a pandemic and the chaos of current international politics and geophysical destruction, this installation considers the fluidity of self, dislocation, and border crossings: presence/absence, public/private, poverty/privilege, colonized/colonizer. In these layered worlds of chance encounters, I look for those slippages of
language, materiality and visual experience through which we might re-locate our own identity.

catalog downloadable pdf




In workshops throughout the area participants were asked to visualize or write about a personal space where they took refuge during quarantines – it could real, imaginary, or it could be “on Pluto”. Working on sheets of metal foil, nearly a hundred of images were then attached to the walls of a 13-foot domed shrine-like structure. A monument to the lived pandemic experiences of this community. The dark interior is punctuated by a pattern of lights coming through tiny dark holes piercing the domed room. Like a night sky, it creates a space for contemplation, perhaps to imagine a universe without pandemics and dire planetary emergencies. Pandemic Planet help the community share and process it’s experiences. Thank you to all our participants!

This project was conceptualized by the artist but then fully developed by Vanessa Sage, Figge Associate Curator, and Laura Wright, Brian Allen and the entire staff of the Figge Education and Outreach Departments, along with Terry Rathje and Rod Bradley, who assisted in the design and construction the structure.

In Conversation: Jane Gilmor and art historian Joy Sperling